My girls! My besties… The ones that give me all the fun of travel, without the headache of parenting! Planning a girls trip doesn’t have to be difficult and might be exactly what you need right now.
I really love a good girls trip & I’m grateful to get to go on at least 1 or 2 a year.
They’re always a wonderful time to step away from the everyday, have fun and deeply connect to my ladies.
I’m about to head off for one this coming week, and thought it would be fun to share a little about my planning process along the way. How I go about planning a weekend trip away with my girlfriends and how I manage to leave the family at home.
Tip: Planning always helps!
Coming back filled, rested & refreshed and ready for a new season of parenting is worth the hassle every time!
Three Things To Think About Before You Start Planning
Here are three things important things I’ve learned to think about before planning a girls trip that always impact our locations, ideas & final plans.
Money can be a sensitive topic, and it’s important to consider everyone’s budget before planning a trip. Make sure everyone is comfortable with the cost of the destination, accommodations, activities, and any other expenses that may come up. If some friends have tighter budgets than others, consider finding ways to split costs or choose a more affordable destination.
Talking ahead about this can really help one friend not feel like they are being backed into something they honestly can’t handle committing to.
It’s important to consider everyone’s schedules and availability when planning a girls trip. Make sure everyone has enough time off work or other commitments to fully enjoy the trip. If some friends have more restrictions than others, consider finding a compromise that works for everyone, such as a shorter trip or a destination closer to home so some friends can come and go.
While it’s great to have a diverse group of friends, it’s important to consider everyone’s interests when planning a trip. Make sure there are activities and attractions that appeal to everyone, and don’t force anyone to participate in something they’re not comfortable with. Not everyone loves wine? Maybe split up and have a couple friends go wine tasting, while others check out a museum!
If there are conflicting interests, consider finding ways to split up or compromise, so everyone gets to do something they enjoy.
Girls Trip Pitfalls To Avoid
Well, let me tell you, taking a girls trip with your besties can be a blast, but it’s not without its pitfalls. For starters, there’s always that one friend who insists on overpacking and taking up half the suitcase space with unnecessary items (Ha! Hi… I’m the problem here;).
And then there’s the friend who can never make up her mind about what to do, leaving everyone else frustrated and bored.
But the real danger comes when you mix alcohol and late nights. Suddenly, everyone thinks they’re the funniest person in the room, and the group become a chaotic mess of inside jokes and blurry selfies. And don’t even get me started on the morning after, when everyone is nursing a hangover and trying to piece together the events of the night before.
But despite all these potential pitfalls, a girls trip with your friends is still totally worth it… and SO MUCH FUN!
After all, who else will understand your obsession with taking Instagram-worthy photos of your brunch or your need to hit up every cute souvenir shop in town?
So grab your squad, pack your bags, and get ready for an adventure. Just don’t forget to bring plenty of snacks and a good sense of humor to help with that hangover.
My 5-step process for planning a girls’ trip
1. Choose the destination
The first step is to decide where to go. You can brainstorm a list of potential destinations with your friends and narrow down based on your preferences. Some things to consider when choosing a destination include travel time, cost, activities, and overall vibe.
- Supplies needed: A notepad and pen or a group chat to share ideas. Plus a computer to look up your options.
- How it helps: By choosing a destination that everyone agrees on, it can set the tone for a fun and enjoyable trip.
- Watch out for: Be sure to consider everyone’s budget when choosing a destination, and make sure it’s a place that everyone is excited to visit.
2. Decide on dates
Once you have a destination in mind, the next step is to decide on the dates for the trip. You’ll need to consider everyone’s schedules and availability, as well as any events or activities you want to attend at the destination. A few of my favorites that we have done for girls trips are Austin, Nashville, a quick trip to Chicago, Napa, Palm Springs & a Cruise to the Bahamas.
- Supplies needed: A shared calendar or scheduling app.
- How it helps: By agreeing on dates early, everyone can make sure they have the time off work or other commitments and can plan accordingly.
- Watch out for: Be mindful of any major events, school breaks & holidays that may affect travel or accommodations.
3. Book accommodations
With the destination and dates set, it’s time to book accommodations. You’ll want to find a place that is comfortable, convenient, and within your budget, but also totally instagram worthy obviously! I like to start by using a booking app to begin research.
Another great way to find fresh & fun accommodations is taking to social media. You can search by location and check out what others are sharing. Follow up searching the hotel name online and reading both the positive and negative reviews. You’ll also want to decide early if you’re looking for a hotel or a house. I almost always choose a home accommodation when with my girls. Room to spread out and chill together is very important!
- Supplies needed: A laptop or smartphone to search for accommodations online.
- How it helps: Having comfortable and convenient accommodations can make the trip more enjoyable, and booking early can ensure you get the best deals.
- Watch out for: Be sure to read (both 5 star and 1 star) reviews carefully before booking, and consider factors such as location, amenities, and overall cleanliness.
4. Plan activities
No girls’ trip is complete without fun activities to do together! You can research local attractions, events, or tours, or come up with your own itinerary based on your interests. I love to start this search with Pinterest, as you can tell from my intense travel boards. Explore what others have done and know that you can search really specifically. Search for something like “girls trip to Austin that doesn’t involve concerts” – and see what you find!
- Supplies needed: A laptop or smartphone to search for activities online, and a Google Doc or spreadsheet to keep track of plans.
- How it helps: Having a plan for activities can keep the group engaged and ensure that everyone has a good time.
- Watch out for: Be sure to consider everyone’s interests and budget when planning activities, and don’t over schedule to the point of exhaustion. One big activity & One big meal a day is perfect for any trip.
5. Pack and prepare
The final step is to pack and prepare for the trip. Make sure you have all the necessary essentials and consider any special items needed for the destination or activities. Think about bringing along gifts for your girlfriends and snacks to share obviously!
- Supplies needed: A packing list, suitcase, and travel essentials such as passports, tickets, and reservations.
- How it helps: Being prepared can minimize stress and ensure a smooth travel experience.
- Watch out for: Be sure to check the weather and pack accordingly, and don’t forget any important items such as medications or travel documents.
4 Tips for Leaving Your Family Well On A Girls Trip
One of the hardest things about going on a girls trip is leaving your family behind. Even for the most involved and helpful husband, it can be a challenge to solo parent, or difficult to find childcare if you don’t have a partner to help at home. Here are a few tips that make my exit and re-entry easier every time.
Leave a trail of snacks
We all know how important snacks are, especially when you’re dealing with a hungry family. So, before you leave, make sure to leave a trail of your family’s favorite snacks throughout the house. This will not only keep them well-fed while you’re away, but it will also provide a fun scavenger hunt for the kids!
Create a schedule chart
Let’s face it, your people are going to struggle without you. But you can make their lives a little easier by creating a schedule chart for them to follow while you’re gone. Be sure to include all the important activities, food plans and fun ideas as well to keep everyone on track (and to make sure they don’t burn down the house while you’re away).
Send daily postcards
Who doesn’t love getting mail? While you’re away, send your family a daily postcard from your travels. Not only will it give them a glimpse into your adventures, but it will also remind them that you’re thinking of them (even if you’re having way more fun without them;).
Set up a virtual assistant
Finally, to make sure your family doesn’t completely fall apart while you’re away, consider setting up a virtual assistant to help them out. This doesn’t even need to be a person. Before you leave you can
- Set alarms on their phones reminding them of appointments
- Place an online grocery order
- Make a reservation for them at a favorite family restaurant
- Buy a new fun board game and leave it on the table to play
Setting up your family for a smooth transistion will help them have a great time without you. Plus, it will make you look like a superhero when you return home to a smoothly running household!
Happy time away with your girls! I hope it’s just the best.