Written by Victoria Philpott
What will your New Year’s resolution 2013 be? If I know you, and I think I do, I’m guessing you’ll just roll out the same one as last year. Well, in the spirit of the time of year here’s a few motivational words from yours truly to help your usually doomed-by-now resolutions become reality, using the incentive of more travel…
1. Quit smoking
Come on, this year YOU CAN DO IT! Stop saying you will and just put those cigarettes down, stay away from people who do smoke and let everyone know you’re giving up so they can help you too. A 20-pack costs around €8 so if you smoke 20 a day you’ll have set €2,920 in a year up in smoke. 10-a-day is obviously half, which is €1,460. DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOU COULD TRAVEL FOR THAT?!
- You could fly to Bangkok from London (€640 return in March 2013) and stay in a private room at the 95.1% rated Khaosan Baan Thai hotel for 5 nights (€5.82pppn x 5 = €29.10) before heading down to Koh Samui on the train first class (€30) and staying for 5 nights at the 90.7% rated Hutcha Resort on Maenam Beach (€14.87pppn x 5 = €74.35). You’ll get your own villa connected by narrow footpaths and bridges to the mainland. You can take your included breakfast on the waterfront veranda before taking a rain shower in your private bathroom. Then you could either explore the islands such as Koh Phangan, or head up to Chang Mai – either way, you’ve still got a massive €686.55 to spend.
- Or you could fly to Budapest (€60) and stay for 100 nights at the Hostel Goodmo (€9pppn x 100 = €900) and you’ll still have €500 leftover for food and drink while you’re there.
2. Join a gym
At this fat and over-indulgent time of year you might feel like you want to sign the next year of your life over to the gym in a quest for that super-toned body you’ve always wanted. I wouldn’t bother if I was you. Take up running, cycling, dancing, walking – anything that gives you a bit of fresh air rather than slaving away on a treadmill for that impossible dream. Gym membership costs around €60 per month, plus a joining fee. Take a run around Regent’s Park instead, and you could enjoy the following for the cost of a yearly (€720) gym membership. QUIT THE GYM AND TRAVEL!
- Fly to New York City (€450) and stay in a double private room at The Sohotel (rated 85%) for ten days at €16.52pppn (€16.52pppn x 10= €162.50) and still have €107.50 left over for food and drink. Run around Central Park anyone?
- Or fly into Venice (€90) and stay for two weeks at the Frari Apartment 2 (rated 97.1%) for two weeks (€35pppn x 14 = €490) and still have €140 leftover for food and drink while there.
3. Eat less and lose weight
Yes do! It will save you money for your travels, and hopefully avoid feeling the need to do number 2 (see above). Only eat when you’re hungry, cut down on meals out and always choose the cheapest option and I bet you could slash a quarter off your yearly eating budget. A Benenden Healthcare Society survey says the average Brit buys 46 takeaways a year, costing around £460 (€566)- so you can get rid of them for starters. YOU COULD GO ON HOLIDAY TO…
- Fly to Berlin (€50) and stay at the Generator Hostel Berlin for €9pppn. Stay for a week (€9pppn x 7 = €63) and you’ll still have €453 to blitz in the city.
- Or fly from London to Amsterdam (€55) and stay at the MEININGER Hotel Amsterdam City West for just €13pppn. Stay for a week (€13pppn x 7 = €91pppn) and you’ll still have €420 to spend in the coffee shops.
4. Spend more time with family and friends
Aww, that’s a nice resolution. Everybody knows the best way to spend good, quality time with family and friends is when you’re on holiday. Just a snaffled night here and there is never enough to unearth everything that could be bothering someone and to really reconnect. Book a few days away with your favourite people for the price that it would cost the group of you to actually visit each other, and you’ll get a memorable holiday out of it too. DO YOU KNOW HOW CHEAP HOLIDAYS CAN BE?
- Book the private 12-bed dorm at Momotown Hostel in Krakow for just €8.59pppn and you’ve already got a cheap holiday there. Private doubles and triple ate also available from €13.50pppn, if anyone needs a bit of peace from the rabble. Flights start at just €50pppn in February.
5. Cut down on drinking
I’ve just checked out some research that says the average Brit between the ages of 21 and 38 spends 60 days a year drunk, and consequently hungover. Woah, that is a lot. I’d say I’m probably a bigger partier than the average too. Hmm worrying. In London a night out will easily rush you €30 on average too, so €30 x 60 = €1,800, oops. I DON’T KNOW WHERE I COULD TRAVEL FOR THAT?
- I could fly to Buenos Aires (€780 in May) and stay in a private room at Hostel Suites Florida for ten days at €17.06pppn (€17.06pppn x 10 = €170.60). And I’d still have €849.40 left for food and drink along the way. Woah, I could have a great time in Argentina on that!
- Or, I could fly to Athens in Greece (€90) and stay at the Athens Backpackers in a deluxe 1 bedroom apartment for 30 nights at €36.50pppn (30 x €.36.50 = €1,095). And I would still have €6155 to splash over the month. Wow, that would be cool.
Argh, I really want to go to Buenos Aires, and I haven’t even been to Athens yet, but I do love the odd Jagerbomb on a night out, this is going to be a tough decision. New Year’s resolutions are hard…
Thanks to Ody5iu5, tboothhk, luis perez, etagwerker, tgraham, pepsiline and Arian Zwegers for the images from Flickr. Please note, all images were used under the Creative Commons License at the time of posting.