During the planning and taking of many trips, I’ve discovered some useful acronyms, words and phrases that pop-up with frequency. They are worthy of explanation for other like-minded or hopeful wanderers in search of a travel tip, deal or destination inspiration.
PVD (Post Vacation Depression) The best way to reduce PVD is to start planning the next trip on the plane or car ride home of the current. Keep the perpetual carrot of travel always dangling in reach.
This is a condition that occurs about 3-6 weeks prior to departure. Symptoms include lack of concentration at your place of work, excessive internet searches on your destination, lodging, restaurants, etc. and complete loss of focus for all other important life tasks.
Low-Season (shoulder season)
Travel off-season and save a bundle of cash. Most people are on a budget so try Ireland in November or Provence in May for example. Airfare and lodging are discounted plus you don’t have to battle in lines with irritating and demanding tourists.
VRBO (Vacation Rental By Owner) or Airbnb
Staying in a chain hotel is decidedly old school, unfulfilling and expensive. I’ve traded in high prices and crappy continental breakfasts for unique overnight stays at privately owned condos, homes or studios. The individual owners list their properties and amenities on VRBO or Airbnb websites, where filters are set up based on price, rooms, dates, location and other criteria. The owners in many cases are available onsite, ready with local suggestions and tips.
DMO (Destination Marketing Organization)
aka CVB (Convention & Visitors Bureau)
Most destinations and cities have offices dedicated to purveying tourist info, maps and deals at local attractions, restaurants, entertainment and more. Check with the DMO or CVB before you leave, request a Visitors Guide or search on their websites for events happening during your stay. A local example: www.visitmuskegon.com
FOMO (Fear of missing out)
Avoid this syndrome while in the midst of a trip. Less is more. Rather than notching cities from the windows of a car or bus, get out and plant your two feet on the ground in a lake, at a pub or in museum. Pick two cities instead of five and reward your soul with less stress and apprehension.
PWDS (People who don’t suck)
Choose your travel partners wisely as their true character is revealed on the road. My bunch of friends (travel buddies) garnered the nickname after a recreational kickball victory. My opponent accused me of stacking our team full of ringers. I politely informed him, “Well, I generally don’t hangout with people who suck.”
PTO (Paid time off)
An important benefit available at workplaces where the boss pays you not to work. Most companies provide an average of 10-14 days per year of vacation and PTO combined. The gut-wrencher is that many of us leave 2-3 days unused and on the table. Studies show how important a get-away is for mental health and wellness.
BLD (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Many adventure itineraries or outfitters use abbreviations to clue patrons in on what’s included. Be sure to calculate in meals and related costs if your trip plan does not include BLD. Also, most DO NOT include airfare so budget accordingly.
Hangry (also widely known in my travel circle as a bitch-attack)
A deadly condition where hunger collides head on with over exertion, extreme physical exercise or adverse travel conditions. A person becomes so hungry it causes erratic behavior, like extreme violent outbursts and inappropriate language leaving companions and onlookers shocked. Tip: Always carry protein bars in your carry-on or purse.
Summary: Call the DMO for ideas, take your PTO, start peaking, pick a few PWDS to join you and bunk in at a VRBO pushing aside FOMO. Enjoy BLD to avoid getting hangry then start thinking about the next vacation to ward off PVD.