How to plan a staycation
Updated 17th May 2021 - We recommend the coronavirus page on the NHS website for more up to date information.
Lockdown in England has ended, although there are still travel restrictions in place especially on international travel. Which means what you can do and who you can see is still limited. It's also not clear when the restrictions will end completely, allowing international travel to fully resume.
Many of us are facing the sad prospect of cancelled flights and hotel bookings. If you’ve had to cancel a trip away, and you’re wondering how to make the most of some time off later in the year, why not arrange a staycation?
This is where you enjoy holiday activities within or near to your house, without always sleeping away from home. It’s a great way for families to make the most of time off – and, as an added bonus, it’s a lot more affordable than a regular holiday.
For more inspiration, read on for some tips on planning that perfect staycation.
Please note: guidance is designed for people living in England. If you are living in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland you should follow local guidance.
Check the local guidelines on outdoor excursions
The first step is to be clear on local restrictions to make sure you won’t be breaking any rules.
In England, you should travel safely. If you can you should try to avoid using public transport to travel; instead you should drive, cycle or walk to get to your destination.
Start planning outdoor excursions
Once you’re clear on the rules, you can start researching some fun outdoor excursions for later in the year. If you have a car you can plan a visit to he seaside or a national park where you can swim, hike, cycle and have a picnic – providing there aren’t too many people around and can maintain social distancing.
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Use public facilities closer to home
You can also research activities within your hometown including organised sports. You can visit any open green spaces to walk, exercise or have picnics – just bear in mind restrictions.
Organise activities in your house
Who says you need to leave the house to enjoy your staycation? If you have a garden you can organise all kinds of fun activities. On the hottest days, setting up a paddling pool and a barbecue is a great way to channel those holiday vibes. You can even set up a tent in your garden for some at-home camping.
If you don’t have a garden you can still make your staycation special. Fun family activities to enjoy inside the house include:
- Board game tournaments
- Arts and crafts projects
- Baking competitions
- Talent shows
- Movie nights
Have family and friends over to sit in the garden
Currently restrictions in England mean that groups of six people from any number of households or two households can meet up outdoors and indoors. Having a garden may mean you can safely invite over friends and family.
If you’re having people over, set out a dedicated area where they can sit at a safe distance, and make sure if they do come inside that you can continue to socially distance, wash your hands and wear a face mask.
Keep healthy on your staycation
Holidays are often about over-indulging, and while there’s nothing wrong with treating yourself, it’s important that you keep your health in mind during your staycation. In short: avoid eating too much junk food, drinking too much alcohol, and staying out in the sun for long periods.
If you’re going to have a barbecue, throw some veggies and lean protein on the grill (along with the steaks), and make sure you’ve stocked up on indigestion medication if you experience heartburn.
If you’re going to be out in the sun all day – whether you’re on an excursion to the seaside, or simply in your back garden – take the necessary steps to prevent sunburn and sunstroke. Stay hydrated, wear sunglasses, and cover up with hats and long clothing when you’re in direct sunlight for long periods. Most importantly, use a sunscreen that offers UVA and UVB protection, such as the LloydsPharmacy Solero suncare range, which is tailored towards all ages and skincare types.
Summer season is also allergy season, so if you have hay fever or you’re allergic to insect bites, make sure you stock up on any medication you’ll need.
Take plenty of photos
Last but not least, make sure you properly document your staycation with lots of photos and videos. It may not be a regular holiday, but it’s definitely a special one.