Romantic beach getaways are one of the best vacations for couples.

Traveling is something I do very often. Those closest to me would even say I “live out of a suitcase most of the time.”

I get a lot of questions but mostly it’s “how do you do it?”

The short answer: strategic planning.

Beautiful blue skies and seas are always a blessing on vacation.

I love traveling for the new experiences it offers. We get to see other parts of the country… and sometimes the world. Our vacations give us a new appreciation each time we visit somewhere different. It’s truly a blessing to be able to visit and witness such beautiful places.

I am the one planning our family vacations: the things we do, where we’ll eat and where to stay.

Vacations are the perfect time to expand your horizons and learn.

Over the years, I’ve gone through lots of trial and error when it comes to vacation planning. Not so great for us… but now I think I’m at the point where I can give you some insight from our lessons learned.

Here are my top tips for planning your next great vacation:

  1. Time of Year: We like to consider the season we’re planning our vacations in and what kind of weather we want to travel in to… or AWAY FROM!
  2. Do Your Homework: Once you decide where your dream destination is, it’s time to hop on Google, travel blogs, YouTube, etc. to research your ass off. Follow hashtags, like #ParisFrance, to see where to best areas are to stay and what there is to do in that area. Then start thinking of some dates that will work for you and your party so you can begin looking up flights right away. Typically, the earlier you book, the more reasonable the flights will be financially.
  3. Find Your Accommodations: Next, you’ll want to determine if the town or city you chose is more of a hotel or Airbnb type of place. Both offer incredible perks but you should take into consideration: the group you’re traveling with, distance to things you want to do and amenities you think you’ll need.
  4. Plan Your Fun: Don’t wait until you’re already there to book activities and excursions. So many times they are reserved in advance and showing up the day of to do it without a reservation will likely have you leaving in disappointment. Instead, book all of your fun ahead of time… and save a little wiggle room for downtime, too. Just remember to double check their reviews because you don’t want to book with a company that can’t deliver on the fun.
  5. Consider Transportation: Take into consideration if you’ll need to find full-time transportation, like renting a car, or if Uber or walking will work. Remember, where you choose to go has a lot to do with this part of the trip, too.
  6. Keep It Organized: To help keep everyone on the same page and eliminate the constant back and forth questions, I like to make an itinerary for the day by day events. Of course, everything must be scheduled and confirmed to do this—hotel, flights, activities, etc.—but it makes it such a stress-free experience in the end.
  7. PACK IT UP: Finally, it’s time to pack. With everything planned, this is the last thing you have to do before enjoying whatever vacation awaits. Making a checklist always helps me. You can read some of my other travel tips from the time we went to Paris for our 2-year anniversary. Or, you can read all about my girls trip to Turks and Caicos last year that was SO AMAZING that I knew I had to take Mike back to show him how beautiful it was for himself!

Relaxing poolside on vacation is my idea of fun.

Of course, it’s fun every now and then to wing your vacations and just adventure… but especially with young kids, that’s not always possible. Make sure you dot your I’s and cross your T’s if you want to have vacations that end with nothing but incredible, life-long memories for everyone.

Vacations with my husband Mike Evans never get old.