The end of the year is nigh – which, between school and work break-ups, Christmas prep and the general feeling that time is flying by far too quickly, means a tonne of craziness. Give yourself a rest with a much-needed weekend getaway! Here’s how you can get started on the planning…

Think about the ‘who’
Are you in need of a girls’ getaway? A family vacay? A solo escape? Narrow down your guest list to determing which kind of weekend you’re going to be planning for. If you’re unsure, consider this: the more people, the harder it will be to find a date that suits you all – especially in the hectic downhill slide to the Silly Season. If you’re leaving the kids behind, make sure you lock in childcare for the time you’re away. Will your partner stay behind? Do you have extended family willing to host your rugrats in your absence? Brainstorm all of the possiblities and then pick your best option. Remember: the aim of the game is a stress-free escape, so don’t feel bad about taking the path of least resistance!

Think about the ‘what’ + ‘where’
Whether you’re bringing the family along or getting away with your BFFs, you’ll need to plan a few activities. For a mini-break with friends, why not choose somewhere that does the planning for you – like a stay-cation at a lush hotel, or a hinterland health retreat? You can do the same for your family holiday by choosing the most family-friendly accommodation with built-in kids’ activities (we’re looking at you, Paradise Resort!) or opting to go bush – you’ll be amazed at what creativity can be sparked by time in the outback. Ultimately, you’ll want to choose somewhere that covers most bases for you. Between Christmas presents, end of year celebrations and all of those loose ends you need to tie up before 2019 comes to a close, the last thing you need to be planning is a jam-packed weekend agenda!

Think about the ‘when’
This one will likely be your biggest hurdle – December fills up fast, and we’re flying head first towards Christmas! Start a group chat NOW with your chosen guests, and make sure you block out the dates in the family calendar. Nothing (and no one) can get between you and this well-deserved weekend away. Try your hardest to avoid making alterations and accommodations to fit other things in. If you’ve decided on a weekend, stick to it – the sports break-ups and Christmas parties will happen again next year!

Think about the ‘how’
To ensure a stress-free weekend, you’ll need to do a little bit of organizing yourself. Who is bringing what when it comes to food? How will you get there? When will everyone arrive? This is where the group chat comes in handy once again! Make use of handy apps like Booking.com and AirBnB to plan your trip (did you know that you can book experiences with locals through the AirBnB app?!) and Tricount to sort out the funds if you’re travelling with a group – and don’t forget handy TripAdvisor for the best local recommendations for restaurants, sights and more.

Think about the ‘why’
What is driving your weekend away? Quality family time? A much-needed catch-up with friends? An extended family reunion, or a day or two of uninterrupted peace and quiet? Whatever it is, make sure your ‘why’ stays front and centre throughout your weekend. Switch off your phone, indulge in deep conversation or simply enjoy time spent with loved ones without having to stress over which presents you need to buy and who will sit where on Christmas day. Don’t let unnecessary drama or the stresses of your daily routine interrupt your well-deserved weekend away – this is your time!



haven is all about family, life and style in Brisbane's inner city suburbs, the Gold Coast, south to Byron Bay. We have been keeping parents in the know for over eight years, with fun, fresh and helpful stories that they can take tips from or treasure in their own library.