n. Also: stay-cation. – staycationer n. 1. A stay-at-home vacation. 2. A neologism for a period of time in which an individual or family stays at home and relaxes at home or takes day trips from their home to area attractions. 3. Staying at home during your vacation instead of traveling to a pleasure destination. These have achieved high popularity in current hard economic times in which unemployment levels and gas prices are high. 4. When you’re too po’ to go anywhere on vacation so you stay home. 5. A dream vacation right at your doorstep.
After schlepping your bags through airport security or spending hours in the car, sometimes you need a vacation from your vacation. Enter the staycation, which not only saves you the trouble of long travel, but saves the Benjamins as well.
You might have never heard of a staycation, but the premise is simple– getting away from it all without going away. Instead of traveling, you stay in or near your hometown. You can become a hometown tourist, plan fun activities at home, take classes, check into a nearby hotel for some pampering, discover local color or even go on a GPS adventure.
Since we here at EU love the First Coast and all it has to offer, it’s only natural that we’d don cheerleader outfits and yell “GO STAYCATIONS!,” if only figuratively. Our feature articles cover the outdoors, what to do with the kids on your staycation, romantic staycations and more. Even if you aren’t planning a full blown staycation, if you’re looking for some things to do this weekend, this issue is a fantastic place to start.
1. Designate a start and end date. That way you’ll be less likely to simply treat the time as a time to vegetate, and more likely that you’ll get a chance to relax and indulge in staycation activities.
2. Let people know you’ll be unavailable. For at least some of the time, turn off your phone and don’t check your email.
3. Plan out a budget and stick to it. Part of a staycation is saving money, or least spending what you can afford. To save money you can visit attractions during the week, getting in for a reduced cost or even for free. The Cummer, for example, is free on Tuesdays.
4. If you must do projects around the house, make sure that they don’t become the only thing you do. Some people might find tiling their bathroom relaxing. For those people, a staycation devoted to home improvement might be viable, unless you have a spouse who doesn’t feel the same way.
5. Document your adventures. As you would on a regular vacation, take photos to commemorate your activities.
6. Schedule your staycation with local events in mind. Take a look at upcoming local happenings, classes and concerts. If there’s a particular one that strikes your fancy, then plan your time off around that.
7. Hire a maid or a cleaning service. Because a vacation just isn’t fun if you’ve got a pile of dirty dishes to do, and you’d be surprised how inexpensive maid service can be.
8. Don’t do ordinary things. Plan activities and have fun. If you don’t, you risk falling into the trap of watching Judge Judy and Jerry Springer for your whole staycation. While it may be fun to do this for a day or two, it will feel more like a unique experience if you use the time wisely.