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From Dreams to Reality: Making 2023 Our Best Year of Travel Yet

From Dreams to Reality: Making 2023 Our Best Year of Travel Yet

From the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic to changes in the global economy, the past few years have uncovered many obstacles for travelers. For many of us, these factors have made planning trips a challenge. As we move forward into an optimistically brighter future, it’s important that we think about our travel goals and begin making plans for what’s next on our itineraries. 

Travel is about more than just the destination. It’s about the memories we make and lessons we learn as we immerse ourselves in different cultures, explore new corners of the world, and make lasting friendships along the way. 

We don’t know about you, but we feel more ready than ever to set new goals, and conquer them this year! With the right planning and preparation, the possibilities for 2023 travel are endless.

So let’s make a plan for transforming our goals from dreams into reality! Here’s what we are doing to make sure 2023 is our best year of travel yet.


Setting SMART Goals!

It’s easy to daydream all day long, but the hard part is figuring out what exactly is standing between us and our goals. Setting SMART goals is our favorite way to bridge the gap between where we are and where we want to be.

So what makes a goal “SMART?”

Specific: Each goal should be clear and well-defined so that you can focus clearly on what you must do to accomplish it. 

Ask yourself: Who, what, where, when and why?

Measurable: Each goal should be easily measurable as you lay out the checkpoints and individual tasks necessary to achieve it. As you measure your progress, you can stay motivated with each step you take closer to your objective.

Ask yourself: How will I know when I have reached this goal?

Achievable: The goal should challenge you but not be entirely out of reach. It should be realistic and attainable to be successful.

Ask yourself: Do I have the resources and capabilities to achieve the goal? If not, what am I missing?

Relevant: This step is about ensuring that your goal is important to you and that it also aligns with your other life goals.

Ask yourself: How much does this matter to me and is it worth the time and effort? Is it significant to my life?

Time-bound: Your goal should have a clearly defined timeline, including not only your travel dates, but also the stages of saving, planning and booking your trip and milestones for each. This step helps to prevent everyday tasks from taking priority over your longer-term goals.

Ask yourself: Is my timeline realistic while also creating urgency?

Once we can answer all of these questions and feel confident about our plan of action, we can stay organized and start taking the necessary steps to turn these goals from dreams into reality!


Getting our priorities straight!

Once we have narrowed down our goals and gotten SMART about them, we can choose what to prioritize the most! It’s okay if some of the goals we analyze don’t quite make the cut. That’s what our “someday” lists are for!

We should consider how many trips we want to take this year. Do we want to prioritize visiting more places on shorter trips, or taking longer trips to our most important destinations? Do we want to take advantage of the weekends to take as many getaways as possible, or do we want to block off all of our PTO for an excursion across many states or countries at once?

Beyond destinations, we can prioritize experiences, too. Maybe we want to travel abroad for the first time, or we want to try out skydiving this year! It can be a tough task to decide which adventures are most important to us, but once we figure it out, we are on track to our best year of travel ever!


Working out our budgets early!

When it comes to overcoming our travel challenges, money and budgeting is the obstacle that comes up the most. By working out our travel budget for the year now (and saving early!), we can cut out one of the biggest factors standing between us and turning our dreams into reality!

Here are a few steps we can take now to create and manage our budget throughout the year:

  • Identify the biggest expenses first.
  • Start saving for the next trip as early as possible.
  • Leave room in the budget for any emergency expenses.
  • Take advantage of credit card rewards, travel discount sites, and travel clubs for the best deals.
  • Use an app like Mint or Nerdwallet to help manage the budget. 
  • Consider off-season trips to lower costs. 

Whether it’s big or small, any amount we can put toward our budgets each week or month brings us that much closer to experiencing all that we set out to do!


Check out our free guide to creating your perfect travel budget!


Networking with fellow travelers!

If there’s one thing to be said about travel lovers like ourselves, it’s that we love talking about and sharing our experiences almost as much as we love exploring!

In the virtual world we live in today, it’s easier than ever to connect with our fellow travelers. We can join online travel communities, attend virtual and in-person travel-related events, and join travel clubs (that often include discounts and deals on flights, hotels, activities, and more!) 

These groups give us the opportunity to share our travel stories, hear about other people’s adventures, and get advice on resolving any bumps in the road along the way. Facebook is a great source of travel-related groups, but we can find travel enthusiasts in all corners of the web!


Join our travel Facebook group, For The Love of Travel!


There’s also nothing stopping us from creating our own travel networking groups with our most adventurous friends and loved ones. By setting aside time to discuss our 2023 travel goals, we can hold each other accountable and become even more likely to accomplish them!


Holding ourselves accountable!

If we are going to make 2023 our best year of travel yet, we have to hold ourselves accountable to turning our own plans from dreams into reality. Here are a few of our favorite ways to do so:

  • Revisit our travel goals and plans often and reevaluate when needed.
  • Create a visual representation of our goals and update it often.
    • This could be a spreadsheet, a vision board, or our personal favorite: a push pin map!
  • Share our goals with others – whether we tell our friends and family about our dreams, post them on social media, or start our own travel blogs.


So what are we waiting for? Let’s get to work and make our 2023 travels our greatest so far! If you need any support or advice along the way, we are always here for you. Check out our blog, The Compass, for more helpful advice and travel tips. Or email us at yourfriends@conquestmaps.com – we are here to help in any way that we can!
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