The Travel Power of the 3 Day Weekend
Three day micro trips have become a staple of our travel plan. With limited vacation days, I had to get creative with how do more travel with less time. The travel bug cannot be limited by American paid-time-off! By taking one day off in exchange for a three day trip, you now only get to check more destinations of your travel list but also feel refreshed going back to work on Monday morning that you had a fabulous weekend.
Where to go?
We pick destinations that are focused on one city or area that are usually within a few hour flight or drive. This means three day destinations for me may not be three day destinations for you depending on where you are traveling from. Major cities are a great choices when picking places to go as not only will there be lots of things to do but also gives easy accessibility. Major cities mean there are more options for flights and therefore, more competition between airlines and cheaper flights prices for you.
Start on Thursday
I always leave on Thursday evening after work so we have the full three days exploring, returning on the last flight out on Sunday. Leaving on the last flight out on Sunday has its risks – yes we have been delayed so late where I had to go straight into work on Monday – but more times that not it works out and it is always worth losing a bit of sleep. Small sacrifice for the satisfaction of travel. And honestly, I feel more refreshed going back to work knowing I just came back from a vacation. It really makes the weekend feel a lot longer and that I was gone for more than just three days.
Is three days enough?
Definitely! Recall why you are visiting and prioritize those activities while you are there. Whether it is a more relaxing trip or an adventurous one, having at least two and a half days if not more to comfortably explore is a lot more time than you think. The biggest struggle for me is there are never enough meals to eat all the food I want to try!
Use this template to help plan your trip! Find two or three “big” activities that can fill in one per day and make sure to leave time to simply explore.
Another reason to incorporate three day weekends into your travel plan is that they require far less planning and allow for more spontaneous, last minute trips. I have Google flights always tracking desired destinations for arrival on Thursday evening and departure on Sunday night and when one hits a price I am excited about, we go! In 2019 we ended up going to Nashville and Charleston because the flights were just too good to pass up – and were great three day weekend destinations.
While we started traveling in three day weekends as a necessity to travel, it has been a great way to break up the regular routine, pushing the reset button. One vacation day ends up transforming into some of our favorite trips and memories.