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Microcations: The Busy Millennial’s Guide to Quick Trips

Kylie Stine | Mar 8, 2022

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Times just aren’t like they used to be. 

I think most of us can agree that the line between work life and personal life blurs more than we’d like it to. In fact, they’ve become so blended that there’s now a word to describe the combination of business and leisure: bleisure.

Bleisure travel certainly has its benefits, like not needing to use all your vacation time or worry about missing project deadlines. But if you struggle to find work-life balance, it can sometimes feel like your vacation has passed you by. Never able to truly disconnect, you end your trip still craving that escape from daily life.

This is why we love microcations. You get that much needed break from all the obligations of home without a major time commitment you might not even be able to make in the first place.

Microcation is the term for a leisure trip that lasts less than five nights, and its appeal is growing. In addition to being a more budget-friendly form of travel, microcations allow us to get out of the office, the house, and our otherwise mundane day-to-day lives for a few days without falling behind to the same degree we would during an extended vacation.

Here are five tips for how to plan a short trip. They might not have built Rome in a day, but you can still see the hot spots in four and make the most out of a microcation.

1. Plan a long weekend.

Traveling during the week can sometimes get you better deals on flights and lodging, but it does cut into your paid vacation time. Instead, consider going Friday through Monday or Thursday through Sunday. You still take a four-day trip, but you only miss two days of work or picking the kids up from school. Sometimes simple weekend trips mean you have to get more creative, but the upfront effort is worth it.

2. Take the red eye.

When you’re in a hurry to leave an airport, the only thing worse than waiting for your luggage is finding out it’s delayed or lost. Since your trip isn’t even a week long, pack all of what you need in a carry on and a personal item. This combination can be a duffle bag and a backpack, a backpack and a large purse, etc.

Worried you have too much stuff? Try packing clothes that are diversifiable so that you can wear them multiple days as pieces of different outfits. Also, don’t forget to use travel-size containers for liquid toiletries!

3. Pack items in a carry-on bag.

Packing for studying abroad.

When you’re in a hurry to leave an airport, the only thing worse than waiting for your luggage is finding out it’s delayed or lost. Since your trip isn’t even a week long, limit your risk and pack everything in a carry-on.

Worried you have too much stuff? Use this simple packing checklist for your next weekend trip. One of our favorite hacks is packing clothes you can wear multiple days as pieces of different outfits. You get more options without taking up more space.

4. Make an itinerary before you go.

If you’re like me, the pressure of a time crunch causes my brain to rapid fire in tons of different directions. It’s hard to decide what to do when I don’t have a set schedule with time constraints. Channel your innermost Type A and make an itinerary so you don’t get overwhelmed when you arrive.

Your itinerary will do three things. First, you’re less likely to miss out on something you really wanted to do. With so many options and no strategy, it’s easy to forget or miscalculate and run out of time for something high on your wish list. Second, planning can help you create an accurate estimate of each activity’s time, including transportation time to and from that activity. It’s a great way to beat FOMO (fear of missing out) and even planning other activities if you notice large gaps in your itinerary. And finally, it will help you make reservations to guarantee your spot at a coveted restaurant, event, or tour.

If you’re struggling to narrow down what to do on a microcation, find some focus with these tips on how to see the best of any city in 48 hours.

5. Stay at a hotel in a central location.


I recently traveled to New York City, and the hotel I stayed in was right off Times Square. While the cost per night may have been a bit more expensive than a room in a different borough, almost everything I wanted to do and see was within walking distance.

Plus, staying in midtown meant it took roughly the same amount of time to get to the upper and lower east and west villages. Time is money, people, and I saved a lot of it by staying in a central location.

Overall, a mini vacation can be a fun way to cross something off your bucket list without leaving behind your family, job, and other responsibilities of everyday life for too long.

Just in case something does go wrong, like a delayed or  canceled flight, be sure to purchase a trip protection plan for your microcation. Travel safely and get a quote for your next getaway.

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