Written by Victoria McEwan
Alcohol and traveling go hand in hand. Think about it. You’re gearing up for a well-earned trip away and it usually goes something like this. Last day of work, head to the pub to start the holiday early with a few cold ones. Get to the airport, check in, and grab a drink to celebrate the official start of your holiday. Jump on the plane, another celebratory beer as you head off into the clouds. Arrive at your hotel to be greeted with welcome drinks. Well it would be rude not to right?!
So what happens when you decide to take a break from the booze or cut it out altogether?
As travel bloggers, the scenario above was all too familiar. At the beginning of 2015, we decided to make a lifestyle change and kick the grog for 12 months. One of our biggest challenges to date has been changing the way we associate our traveling lifestyle with drinking.
It wasn’t easy at first. In fact, it was pretty challenging. However, we’re glad to report that our travels have become even more incredible without the champagne than they ever were with it!
So, with that in mind, here’s what we’ve discovered to be our top 5 benefits of traveling sober!
1 :: You’re much less likely to miss your flight
I don’t know about you, but we’ve missed a fair few flights in our time (about 20-30 in total!). The majority of them as a direct result of feeling a little worse for wear from a boozy ‘last night’ out on the town. No booze means less chance of oversleeping and missing your flight!
2 :: Your holiday dollars go further
Yep, it’s true. No booze equals more money. This is awesome when traveling as you’ll have more cash to spend on epic activities like bungy jumping, skydiving, white water rafting or even a spot of shopping. Better yet, use the cash you’ve saved to extend your trip! You’ll also be surprised how cheap your dinner bill is without all the booze on top. Bonus!
3 :: More time to enjoy your holiday
Saying goodbye to hangovers means saying hello to early mornings. This means you’ve just scored yourself a few extra hours each day to enjoy on your holiday.
Our first trip away without drinking was to New Zealand, camper vanning around the South Island. Initially we didn’t think two weeks would be enough time there but waking up hangover free every morning meant we had way more hours to get out and explore. Two weeks ended up feeling like two months!
4 :: Less excess holiday kilos
Swapping your wine for soda water means saying goodbye to a few kilos, without much effort at all. Overindulging is the norm on holiday and we all know that hangovers equal high calorie greasy food the next day.
Not drinking can help you make massive improvements in what you’re eating and drinking, not to mention how great your skin will start to look. Plus, the added bonus of being more active on your travels means you’ll be much more likely to keep those extra holiday kilos at bay!
5 :: You’ll make awesome friends…and be able to remember their names
One of the best things about traveling is the people you meet along the way. Take drinking out of the equation and some may think it’s harder to make friends. Not having a beer or two to relax with might freak you out when it comes to chatting to new people but it’s amazing how many other people are on the same path.
When it comes down to it, it’s actually pretty easy and enjoyable to talk to people sober! Another great benefit of making new friends without added alcohol is that you can have great conversations and remember everything the next day…including their name!