Have you ever felt overwhelmed on a long vacation? Or even like you crammed in too much on your trip away, that you did not even get time to relax? Or you just need a quick break from all the work stress. 

Well here is a new travel trend that is catching on. First of all, one should never cram relaxation. With the whole point of a travelling associated with relaxation, destressing and exploring the 24 hour vacation is giving us a chance to experience our favourite tourists’ spots for that quick fix to help boost our relaxation vibes that is long overdue. 

Back view woman relaxing looking outside through a window sitting on a sofa in the coffee shop with a warm light

With most of us having limited days of vacation per year, carving out time for an overdue vacation seems like quite a long process which is furthered by an itinerary that is neither relaxing nor satisfying. Take America, The average American worker takes just eight days a year according to the US Department of Labor for Holidays. Indians on average, get twelve paid vacations days, excluding paid public holidays. In rapidly growing companies with long vacation or even short ones practically becoming non-existent, Stay-cations and 24-hour vacations have become a reality. 

What is 24- Hour vacation? 

As the name suggests it is the vacation that lasts for a total of 24 hours. Might it be a transit period on a longer vacation, or staying within the vicinity of your current location for 24- hours, this trend is largely focused on allowing travellers to relax, destress and experience a city on a smaller scale, without all the elaborate planning or grand vacationing plans. Smaller breaks are easier to take than one long vacation. Thus, 24 hours trips are essentially smaller trips for a shorter period of time, on a smaller budget and closer to home that reaps a rather larger benefit for your overall well-being. 

Two friends jumping with their arms in the air off the end of a jetty at a lake together.

 

It is an experience where one can dip their toes in a lot of destinations, just to get a taste of what it holds. It induces a sense of spontaneity in one allowing for you to plan a vacation later in the future based on a micro-macro system. Talking about spontaneity, smaller vacation like the 24-hour travel trend allows one little time to plan out the day. And hey we all know where there is spontaneity, there is definitely a great adventure story. With lesser time on hand, there is a higher chance that you will feel rather relaxed as there is no need to worry about the next day’s itinerary, or your travel plans or even the weird gut feeling where you’re anticipating all that work that awaits you at home. 

Benefits of Shorter Vacations: How 24 Hours can change your life.

One of the biggest benefits of travelling on shorter vacations is the fact that now you have the chance to travel more often. According to Inc., This style of travelling opens up the possibility for you to travel more often(you now don’t have to limit to a once a year-long vacation). Paid time off (PTO)- can be put to alternative use. If you are travelling and exploring cities close to you, you don’t need to take PTO. You can save it for those long vacation in the future. 

Indian surfer girl with long hair sitting on the beach in lotus pose embracing last sunset.

By taking frequent, smaller vacations, you also eliminate the mourning of a long trip that often occurs and also have something to look forward to sooner rather than later. it also becomes very easy for you to disconnect with the world on a shorter trip. Your “Vacation Mode” becomes an instant turn on as you have more control over returning back to the daily grind of your job and professional responsibilities.

While the 24- Hour vacation is no substitute for an actual vacation, it does help one clear their head and give them a small break. Everything works again even after you unplug it for a while. And sometimes unplugging even for a short period can make you feel happier thus increasing your productivity.

Let Experience Speak:

Annie P., a writer for Travel & Leisure talks about how taking these teeny 24-hour vacations have helped her rejuvenated quick and on a lower budget than a longer trip. She believed that as its a shorter trip, her mind was set to jump-start the process of vacation without all the fuss, as she knew she had to make most of every minute. She believes that the “acute awareness of the passage of time makes me more awake. The significance of this is not lost on me”. Concluding that this is why “Micro-cations” are becoming popular with millennials. 

Speaking from personal experience, 24-hour vacations do instil a sense of calm and remove the anxiety that is anticipated while planning a rather longer hectic vacation. My recent expedition to Australia revealed the same. After completing my masters in the Aussie Town of Wollongong, I decided it was time for me to leave the country and head home. So I quit my job and packed up and was ready to leave the sunny, Aussieland for the pleasant chill mood of Bangalore. If you have ever had to pack your whole life up and move, you know the stress you go through. With great stress and three massive suitcases, I journeyed back to Sydney from Wollongong to catch an early flight back the next day. 

My 24- Hours in Sydney was Better than the Whole Trip:

Given that I had 23 hours in Sydney, I thought it would be great to turn this oh so stress filled expedition into a fun relaxing mini-vacation. So I deposited my bags at the local hotel I was crashing at. Walked down to the quayside for a quick lunch at hungry jacks, while basking in the sun right outside the opera house. After spending some time at the Opera House, I caught a ferry from Circular Quay to Manly, a beachy suburb of northern Sydney, where I met a dear friend for a picnic lunch by the beach. The relaxation of knowing that I had only 24 hours in Sydney made me feel rather calm, and I had a sense of spontaneity that I never expected.  

Credit: Srushti Shivaraj

Post lunch I headed back to Sydney for a quick walk around the city as the Vivid festival was underway. There is something amazing about walking around cold gloomy Sydney in the late afternoons, as the vivid venues lit up. After grabbing a quick beer with another friend at the opera bar, I headed back to my hotel for some fantastic room service while overlooking the harbour bridge and the opera house, ending my 24-hour vacation, de-stressing me completely. 

As Annie points out, there is a sense of spontaneity that comes into effect when you know you have to make every minute count. Having been to Sydney before as a tourist, comparing both my long vacation and the micro-cation, they do completely fall on two sides of the spectrum. While I enjoyed the long vacation I took to Sydney previously, most of my vacation was spent being on a rather tight schedule which made me quite anxious. But this on the spur moment where I spent on a 24 hour vacation was surprisingly relaxing and very very fun. 

Freshwater bay, Sydney, Australia on a sunny day

Guess my 24-hours was Up:

So, to conclude on my experience, I believe that given the destination, 24-Hour vacations are amazing. Yes if you are travelling to Europe may be a long, planned vacation is necessary, but say you have a long weekend coming up, instead of sitting at home and doing nothing, get out and go on a quick 24 hour vacation to a place close to you. All you need is a low budget, maybe a car (if you prefer to drive yourself) and a bit of spontaneity.

A 24 hour vacation does allow you to dip your toes in a destination before a long journey, while also helping you relax without having to anticipate the dreaded workload siting for you at the end of your vacation. This style of macro-vacations are amazing and probably something all overworked, tired millennials should look into.

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