Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Mininimalist's Vacation

Vacations are an area of concern for those who practice a minimal lifestyle. Minimalism implies that one does without; therefore, vacations, being a “luxury” should be eschewed. That is a convoluted approach and a misperception of the minimalist’s way of living. Living simply is, in essence, living in such a manner that the individual, less obtrusive items and actions become more central to the lifestyle. Simple living requires that one looks at life as an ongoing series of snapshots and vignettes, instead of as a continual accumulation and hoarding of material goods. That means that living in a simple, uncluttered manner enables the advocate of that style of life to savor impressions, feelings, memories and interactions, in the place of things. In turn, that makes vacations and leisure time significantly more critical than for those who are on the acquisition train.
There are numerous options for the individual looking for a great vacation at minimal cost and minimized impact or consumption.
The first, and that requiring the least energy, is to rent travelogue DVDs. Most libraries also offer these videos through their lending programs, ,making the enjoyment of the videos truly cost effective. The internet offers exceptional avenues by which you can explore the world, at no cost. By combining Internet surfing for exotic and unique adventures and locales with outreach efforts, you will be able to connect with people from around the world, who can share your experiences.
There are many intriguing opportunities that tie in with Internet connections. The Woofer program matches people who are willing to Work on organic farms with those agricultural undertakings. In exchange for your free labour, the farmer provides you with room and board, as well as a peek into that way of living. This adventure opens another door for the true environmentalist and minimalist, by creating a source for fresh-from-the-farm organic produce.
Another travel opportunity for minimalism advocates is the “couch surfing” program. By linking with people around the world who are willing to provide one or two nights of free accommodation and meals, you are able to travel on a budget. In exchange, you, too, agree to provide a couch on which another such traveler can sleep for a couple of nights. Many people in this program have met others from remote corners of the earth, and learned a little more about how people live in other regions.
Volunteer vacationing is a third option for the minimalist on holidays. There are a variety of projects requiring volunteers, from Habitat projects around North America, to relief work in Haiti, to longer-term trips to underdeveloped countries, where one can work while holidaying.
A fourth minimal vacation concept is the “buddy program,” where people in a given area, community or city plan, months in advance, a travel holiday together. This allows each participant to become familiar and comfortable with their travel partner. Shared RVs, vans and cabins or resort accommodations, as well as jointly prepared meals and discounts available for groups make such a vacation more affordable than if travelling alone.
Piggybacking vacation trips onto conferences scheduled in distant cities offers a cost-effective way to plan a holiday. Bartering a timeshare in exchange for something of value that you have makes an easy way to maximize use of resources at minimum cost.
Vacations are about memories and experiences. By exploring ways to holiday inexpensively and efficiently, you can turn an indulgence into a true minimalist concept.

No comments:

Post a Comment