A Jet Set Lifestyle: How long to stay in any one destination

It’s Friday I know you want to get out there and enjoy your weekend so here’s a quick one for you!

Yesterday I discussed how long one needs to see Monaco. After thinking about it for a moment, I realized, most cities, I spend the same amount of time in when it’s my first time there. Rome, Florence, Nice, London, Cinque Terre, etc were all scheduled for a 3 night stay on my first time there.

I am the type of person who likes to do A LOT while I’m away. Most of the time I care more about getting out there and seeing the city rather than being inside of museums. I can understand needing more than 3 nights , if you really want to go in depth in the Uffizi or the Tate, and so forth. Me personally? I’ll check out the highlights and move on, unless something really catches my eye. (If you’re in a beach destination and you want to spend all day by the beach I can see adding an extra night there as well)

Now to see London or Rome in 3 days can seem a bit overwhelming. But it can be done. It just takes some careful planning. In the future I’ll share with you my route planning tips and a sample itinerary for one of my past trips. But for now let’s discuss why 3 nights is a good jumping off point for a new city.

So you get to a new city, there can be issues that delay your arrival and you may get in a bit late, or you may get in early in the AM and have plenty of time to see things. (bonus day!) Get a couple of close sites checked off your list, and try to talk to some locals and see where they say they go. (But depending on travel, and possible delays, I wouldn’t suggest two nights or less for most cities)

Start off bright and early on your first full day in that city. Have a route mapped out of everything you want to hit and in an order that takes the least amount of time to get from one site to the next. Really be a tourist that day. Stay out late, see all you can see.

The next day, you can do any of the items that over flowed from the previous day, but you can be a little more relaxed about it, and give yourself time to immerse yourself in the local culture this day. It’s a great time to try to check out the suggestions you received from the locals.

Finally the next day, when it’s time to leave, you should feel pretty accomplished.

By the end of your first full day you probably can tell if you need longer in that city or not. Sometimes, you know you’re done after that day, and may choose to leave that city early, or do a day trip excursion to a nearby area. If you decide you need more time you have two options:

1. If you booked on hostelworld and you did the flexible deposit that I’ve spoken about check the cancellation policy for your next location and see if you can cancel (before you do, make sure you can extend your stay in your current city) Or, if you can’t cancel, see if you can change the arrival date and push it out a bit. If you didn’t do the flexible deposit you can still check the cancellation policy and go forth, you would just loose your deposit instead of being able to use that deposit on another hostel booking. (Some hotels have 24 hour notice, others 48.)

2. If 1 fails, you have items to look forward to for your next trip back!

I can say, I did extend my stay by 2 nights in Cinque Terre, it is beautiful there! You know I also only did day trips to Monaco and I also only did one night in Pisa.

When you are researching before you leave, again, keep that 3 nights stay as a general rule, but if you’re seeing that there isn’t much you want to really do and you don’t want to spend a lot of time in a museum or on a beach, cut down your stay by a night or two. And if you feel your schedule is too packed, add a night or two. Just you 3 as your average, and as you plan you can take it from there.


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