Planning a trip makes you happy

(As if we didn’t know this already!)… the benefits of planning an adventure is official – scientists even say so! 

I read an article recently on a well known blog site about 10 simple things you can do today that will make you happier… Along with the usual, ‘exercise more’ (Apparently 7 minutes a day could be enough!) and ‘sleep more’ etc. …  ‘planning a trip‘ featured as a key way to increase happiness.

Actually going on the trip or being on the trip isn’t the point, it’s the planning part that increases our happiness.The anticipation and excitement surpass any negative feelings that might arise from other daily struggles.

I am currently planning a trip to Vietnam in December/ January and I can confirm the enormous rise in happiness every time I pick up the travel guide or click onto a good blog post. Reading about white beaches, tasty street food, views of rice fields from trains and bia hoy guarantees a smile on my face every day.

It’s my first time as a planner – I didn’t plan anything for my year long trip. I arrived in Guatemala with a couple of pieces of paper, with instructions on how to find my friend in Antigua (which I left in the taxi!) and that was about it.  I made it up as I went along – ‘I quite fancy Ecuador’ I thought, and hopped on a bus.

The feeling of freedom this creates in incredible and addictive.  I’ll always crave a morning waking up not knowing what could happen that day or where I might sleep that night.

However, with only 3 weeks in Vietnam  and a lot of miles to get through, a spot of planning is unavoidable this time…

Other travel guides are available…!


I never thought I could get so much joy from researching hostels, or looking at train timetables. Budget spreadsheets should make me shudder, but instead its filling me with excited butterflies and an intense sense of challenge to keep the costs down. I don’t know the best way to plan, but I do know that I love every minute of trying to do it!

Are you planning a trip? How much do you do in advance? I’d love to hear some top tips please. (Vietnam tips also welcome 🙂 )


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