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Why Planning your Trip is Important

Updated: Jul 16, 2023

We get it: the notion of just packing your bags and setting off into the sunset - no plans, free as a bird, letting the road take you where it will - seems incredibly romantic and adventurous. And it might just be that if you've got no or little time limitations.

But let's be honest: for many, this simply isn't reality (anymore) - demanding jobs with limited time off, commitments at home that don't allow us to be away for too long, or a budget that simply doesn't accommodate weeks or even months on the road. Planning your trip, to a certain degree at least, ensures you'll make the most of the time you have, not miss out on the things that are important to you and you're not surprised with expenses that stretch your budget.

This has never been as true as in current times. Many tourism and hospitality businesses had to modify their services and business hours throughout the pandemic, but as we're navigating back to normal now, the travel demand has come back "with a revenge" (ever heard of the term "revenge tourism"?). Many accommodations and services can't keep up with this new demand, have staff shortages and/or are booked solid months in advance. Walk-ins simply don't stand a chance for a lot of experiences or hot-spot accommodations anymore!

Traveling during the off-season often comes with lower prices and less crowds, but also with limited tour offerings or early, unexpected season closures. When you have limited time and allocate certain days to certain experiences and don't have a chance to simply "do it another day", planning ahead is extra important.

This is what happened to Mandy, an acquaintance of mine I recently went for coffee with to catch up. Last October, she flew across the country to visit friends and decided to do a little impromptu road trip through the Maritime provinces to "just get an idea of the vibe there" and enjoy the fall colours. As she learned more and more about experiences from locals that she "just couldn't possibly miss out on" while there, one disappointment after the next crept into her trip - she missed the kayaking tour of the red sea caves on the Fundy Trail by two days after they shut down for the season, every single must-eat-at lobster roll shack at the wharf in Shediac was boarded up and closed for the season even though many showed as open on Google, wasting two hours of driving time that could have been spent checking out a spot elsewhere that was actually open.

After hearing about the famous and incredibly scenic Cabot Trail on Cape Breton Island in northern Nova Scotia, she spontaneously decided to squeeze in a day to drive it before heading back home from Halifax the next day. An avid hiker, she selected a couple of hikes along the way that she was particularly looking forward to doing. The morning she was about to head out from the remote location where she had spent the previous night, she discovered her rental car had a flat tire and most of her day was consumed by being on the phone with the rental agency and getting to a shop to get it fixed (you can't drive the Cabot Trail with a spare tire on). Needless to say, the Cabot Trail did not happen and she didn't have another chance to do it.

It wasn't all doom and gloom - she found some hidden gem restaurants along the way, satisfying her inner foodie with yummy Maritime fare, met interesting people and immensely enjoyed driving the backroads of Nova Scotia, ablaze in red, orange and yellow leaves in the autumn sun. But she could have had all that - and then some!

Researching and planning a trip can be frustrating and tiresome, hence the appeal of just "winging it" and seeing where we end up. Endless blogs and online reviews are annoying and can get really confusing - especially with polar mixed reviews. Who has the time?! And booking a completely organized, inflexible and often overpriced vacation package is not appealing to those of us who don't want to be locked in completely.

Maximizing your time and experiencing what makes a trip exciting to you is well worth the relatively small investment of paying for professional trip planning. It doesn't mean you're not capable or that you're giving up control when you choose to ask for some help. Nor does it mean that every day has to be planned out. We work with you and dive deep into what gets you excited and looking forward to your trip. There's always room for spontaneity, but it's important to have the "make or breaks" taken care of.

Don't be Mandy. Plan your trip with us.

Happy exploring,


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1 Comment

Nov 05, 2023

Great work

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