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Enjoy spring break with proper planning

By Staff Editorial
On March 15, 2019

Clocks have moved forward and the official start of spring is just a few weeks away. After the long, harsh winter we’ve all endured, it would be safe to say most are looking forward to the longer days and warmer temperatures that are to come. 

For college students nationwide, the transition into the new season is accompanied by a week off for Spring Break. 

Some will travel to warmer places that are known for catering to college students escaping home to let loose while others stay home to work or catch up on schoolwork. 

Regardless of what you do with your time off, here are some reminders and pointers for making the most of the rest and relaxation period so you can enjoy it and come back to finish out the semester on a strong foot.

Make sure to do research if you plan to travel: Due to constantly changing policies regarding travel, make sure to find out what identification requirements you will need for where you are going. Also, inquire about what is and is not included in the costs and in package offerings. 

Plan in advance - don’t wait until the last minute: This one seems like a no-brainer and sometimes a spontaneous trip can be fun however, like other “holiday” travel seasons, the longer you wait the more expensive the experience is and you also run the risk of not being able to go where you want due to capacity limits.

Have a budget and stick to it: When on break or traveling, it can be tempting to buy trinkets and souvenirs as well as take part in activities but it can also be easy to overspend so make a budget ahead of time, save up and hold yourself accountable for sticking to what you can reasonably afford. Avoid using credit unless it is an emergency.

Make sure people know how to reach you: Technology makes it easier than ever to stay in touch but when traveling, phone service and internet or data can be spotty and sometimes expensive. Make sure at least one if not a few people back home know the who, what, when, where and how details of your trip just in case something goes wrong. 

Never underestimate the power of a “Staycation”: This is a term that describes staying at home or close to home but still planning outings and such. We are fortunate here in Iowa that we are not too far from several major cities so if you can’t make it to the beach, that doesn’t mean your hopes of getting away are ruined. 

Also, staying home and enjoying the time off is no additional cost over what is already paid for living expenses and you can catch up on sleep, binge on your favorite shows without feeling guilty and meet up with friends and family. 

Take care of your responsibilities: This one is for everyone, whether there is travel planned or not. In addition to budget planning, make sure to use the time off in the most advantageous way. Get homework and assignments done before you leave, know what you have coming up when you get back and don’t procrastinate. If you are staying home, keep yourself on track while on break and it may even be a good way to get ahead on an assignment or project. 

All work and no play can make anyone dull but too much play and not enough work can make for a difficult situation later. Everyone needs respite time and a break is not supposed to be a hassle but it can also be easy to push off tasks until the last minute. Make a plan in advance, stick to it and enjoy the time off without worry. 

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