5 Steps to Plan the Perfect Summer Trip

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Ready to plan the perfect summer trip?  I know I’m ready for ours!!!

Do you plan your vacation down to specific details?  Or just wing it?

Through our years of traveling, I’ve done both, and I’ve discovered that the most successful trips are in-between the extremes.  Too much planning and you’re setting yourself up for disappointment when something doesn’t go exactly as planned (which WILL happen).  Too little planning and you waste time trying to figure out what to do – and who wants to waste vacation time?  Not me.

Top 5 Steps to Plan the Perfect Summer Trip

Once you’ve decided on a location, follow these 5 steps and you’ll be well on your way to planning the perfect summer vacation with your family.

Plan your perfect summer trip with these tips.

1. Research the locations you are visiting

Spend a few minutes Googling the locations you are visiting.  Check on TripAdvisor for restaurants, hotels, and things to do suggestions. Next, request visitor guides.  This gives you a strong start on understanding your options.

👉 You can find lots of fun and unique activities on Viator too! Do a search on the location you are going to and see what you can find.

2. Involve the whole family

Once the visitor guides arrive (or when you’ve found your list of things to do online), ask each family member to pick at least one thing they definitely want to do on vacation. 

Not only is it a good starting point for planning, but it also ensures everyone is invested and excited about the upcoming trip.

Try a museum on vacation

3. Consider the dates of your trip

Once you have a starting list of things to do (from steps 1 and 2) take a look at when you will be there.  If it’s a Sunday or Monday, make sure shops are open if you plan on checking out a small town.  Look for museums or other attraction hours. 

Think about what would fit best on each day – this doesn’t have to be set in stone, but it’s nice to know “on Thursday we’ll probably go to the amusement park.”  Consider leaving a day or so free to hang out at the resort.

Related post: Make the Most of Your 2023 Travel

4. Create a list of alternative ideas

That way if something doesn’t work out, or you’re not in the mood for the plan for the day you have something to fall back on – saves tons of time scrambling if circumstances change.


5. Think about the journey

If you are driving, get out your map and look for fun stops along the way.  Instead of stopping for fast food, how about touring a dairy factory?  Or check out the world’s largest wind chime. 

These types of stops and other roadside attractions are memorable and help you feel like vacation starts before you even arrive at your destination.

roadside attractions can be a fun way to break up the journey

Be flexible when you plan your summer vacation

If you don’t get to everything, be okay with it.  If something different and interesting comes along, no reason why you can’t check it out! 

However, having a loose plan like this, and a feel for what is available where you are going ensures you won’t waste time each morning researching and deciding what to do.

How do you plan vacations?  To the minute?  Or fly by the seat of your pants?  Either way, give these steps a try and see what happens!


Starting your summer vacation planning? Here are five steps to help you plan the perfect summer trip. Have fun this summer! #summervacation #travel #vacationplanning
Starting your summer vacation planning? Here are five steps to help you plan the perfect summer trip. Have fun this summer! #summervacation #travel #vacationplanning