Feel free to quit smoking. And, by all means, sign back up to the gym for the third time. But if you’re looking for a New Year’s Resolution guaranteed to make 2019 the year of living differently: travel more!
Travel is one of the few activities that genuinely changes you as a person – exposing you to new ways of living and thinking about the world as well as taking you firmly out of your comfort zone.
That’s why – to mark the end of 2018 – we’ve compiled a list of travel-themed resolutions to inspire you and ensure the next 12 months are packed with adventures, new friends and breathtaking experiences.
Whether it’s solo exploring for the first time or heading somewhere you never would’ve dreamed possible, these resolutions are all about pushing yourself that little bit further – and reaping the rewards.
So, take inspiration from the list below or decide on your own personal travel resolution – but leap into 2019 with your passport in your hand and your backpack at the door.
Throw a dart at a map
We’ve all imagined it doing it but who’s actually given it a go? And then followed through?
Letting fate decide your next destination is the ultimate in devil-may-care travel decisions with the potential to throw you into one of the most unique experiences you’ll ever have – or leave you sat on a hastily-arranged dinghy in the middle of the North Atlantic.
Ditch the luggage
Travelling with enough clothes to rival Milan Fashion Week is cool. But to really get a sense of freedom, ditch the luggage for a small carry-on and just the absolute essentials.
Sure, you’re not going to be dressed for the smartest restaurant in town and you’re going to end up washing a couple of t-shirts in a sink somewhere, but travelling ultra-light really shows you how little you need.
Just remember the roll-on deodorant.
Live with a local
Hotels are great. Hostels are fun. But if you really want to experience a new city like a local – trying bunking with one.
This might mean staying in an Airbnb (y’know, one which isn’t just an unlicensed hotel) or it might mean using one of the numerous platforms aimed at getting travellers and locals to share languages and experiences, such as Couchsurfing, Talktalkbnb or cycle touring-focused Warmshowers.
If you’ve never travelled alone before, you may be missing out.
Although viewed with trepidation by some (the loneliness!), in fact solo travel is an amazing opportunity to pit yourself against the challenges the world has to offer – and prove you can overcome them alone.
It also means every decision – what to do, where to eat, how long to stay in one place – is all entirely up to you. A beautiful thing for anyone who has ever spent hours negotiating plans with a travel partner.
Set foot on a new continent
So, you’ve done Asia. And South America. Europe’s also in the bag. Well, that still leaves four pristine, untouched continents for you to explore.
Setting foot on a continent you’ve never visited before is an exciting moment – like unlocking a whole new level in a video game, full of undiscovered landscapes, strange customs and colourful characters.
So, what are you waiting for?