This weeks post is courtesy of Scott Keyes, owner of https://scottscheapflights.com/. He expresses a common feeling that frequent travelers know well—but have been missing.
The Happiness Hack of Booking Flights
few weeks ago I booked my first international trip since the pandemic
began—Madrid in late February 2021. Every time I book a flight, I’m reminded
again of how wonderful it is to have a trip to look forward to. (That’s
especially the case this cursed year.)
fact, one of the most overlooked benefits of travel is that having a trip to
look forward to—even one 10 months from now—can do wonders for your happiness
Tomorrow's Trip is Today's Treat
all, nobody books a trip to Tokyo and then doesn’t think about it again until
they board the plane. If you’re anything like me, the entire interim is spent
dreaming of sushi and researching hidden gems I want to see while I’m there.
can always daydream about future travels, but where the true excitement comes
is when it’s about an actual planned trip, not just a someday/maybe idea. And
what takes a trip from a mere idea to something real? When you’ve booked the
Studies Show Anticipation is One of The
Best Parts of Travel
researchers have examined which parts of vacation bring us the most joy, it
turns out that the period before a trip may be even more important than the trip
itself. Study after study has shown how
much happiness the anticipation of a trip can bring.
not just that planning trips gives us joy today; it also makes travel more
possible. According to one study, people who plan
trips well in advance took 50% more time off from work to travel than
non-planners. One big reason why: bosses are far more likely to approve time
off when it’s requested months in advance.
Free Changes on All New Bookings
now, airlines are offering free changes on all new bookings, even basic
economy. As a result, if come February 2021 it’s still not possible or wise to
take that trip to Spain I booked, I can just push the trip back to the summer
without having to pay any change fee. Remember though: free changes aren’t the
same as free cancellations, and you’re still responsible if there’s a fare
difference with the new flight you choose.
I can book flights and still have flexibility is, personally, the linchpin that
gives me confidence to plan future travel amidst so much uncertainty today.
Think of it as booking in pencil, not in pen.
the past month, I’ve heard over and over from people how excited they are to
make up for lost time once they feel safe and comfortable traveling again. And
many of them have already started making 2021 travel plans as a treat for both
their future selves and their current selves.
Photos from free sources.