Don’t Compromise: Your Food

Think about your most recent vacation—let’s say you went to Germany. What are the moments you remember most? Sure, you probably have a picture at the Berlin wall, and maybe you went to some cool museums. However, food and drink is, without fail, the highlight (or detriment) of most vacations. Spending time at a bar with friends, ordering smoothies poolside, dining at a world-class French restaurant or Beer Haus with your significant other—those are the moments you’ll remember most.

Similarly, food and drink can ruin a vacation. You might accidentally spend too much money at a restaurant, or maybe food was bad or service was poor. Those are the moments you’ll remember and rehash for years to come. While they may be funny in retrospect, experiencing a bad restaurant experience in the moment can cause stress, anger, and anxiety. That’s why you don’t want to skimp on the food.

With food, you get what you pay for. Of course, there is the occasional artisan-quality fast food burger, but for the most part, the cheaper the meal, the worse it will be. The best way to mitigate both cost and your culinary experience is to put in the work beforehand. Once you’ve booked your trip, begin to plan your meals. Use Yelp, Foursquare, and Eater to research where the locals are eating, review your options, and make a few reservations. Doing this in advance will eliminate ambiguity from your trip, and you’ll be guaranteed a table.

If you still want to experience a few meals out but save some money, use dinner as your opportunity to go out. For breakfast, settle for a breakfast bar or pastry, and pack a lunch or grab something from a local cafe. If you want to save even more money by cooking throughout your vacation, shop locally and try to reproduce native cuisine. This way, you’ll have the cultural culinary experience you want, spend money intelligently, and still have great food throughout the trip.

If anything, try to squeeze in at least one evening at a local restaurant. This splurge is all you need for a week to feel luxurious, and you’ll experience the local culture more thoroughly and intensely than if you spend every night eating at a chain restaurant or cooking at your AirBnb.


Gerald Taylor

I am a lifelong explorer and travel enthusiast. I've never been a certified travel agent, but I have multiple family members who were. I'm not necessarily plugged in to the latest travel vendors and exclusive packages, and I've never cared for the label "life coach," but I do think I have some wisdom to offer about how people can get the most of your their vacation time.

    • Volcanos and Penguins and Wine Oh My
      The 28 or so hours traveling here has proven to be more than worth itWhile the flight from Houston to Santiago was overnight and in the dark the three hours from Santiago to Punta Arenas were spent winging over the Andes. Amazing is a word overused i
    • Shropshire 21 Buildwas Abbey Give up struggling trying to make sense of thingsOvercooked Yorkshire Puddings Day 656 or thereabouts
      This time last year I had refused to purchase a Wisdom of the East calendar which had doubled in price probably due to the Covid pandemic . Well everything seems these days to be blamed on Brexit or the pandemic so why not my special calendar . At first I
    • Volcanoes National Park
      We set sail for Volcanoes National Park today and it was a bright and sunny day. We went due south of KailuaKona along route 11 passing by our favorite snorkeling area Two Step stopping at a few pulloffs buying some Kona Coffee all beans are p
    • Day 5 in Paradise
      Well it was a really quiet day today with not a lot going on if I am honest. We all had to go for our PCR tests so we can board the ship on Saturday. The tests were completed across the road from our hotel so not to much of a faff we thought until […]
    • The Days After the Drinking Dining and Sailing on the Douro
      Seasick. Yes that is what ran through my mind as I woke up feeling slightly under the weather and sluggish in my cabin. Seasickness could truly be the only reason. mmmhmm. After hitting the snooze alarm a few times I rallied and met Dave and Merry Jo
    • Burgers Cremation and Hippies
      Day 1 Wednesday November 17th 2021 Renata and I finally booked a trip after 2 years. The past two years have been crazy. With the stress of work and boredom due to the Covid19 pandemic Renata and I needed a few days to get awa
    • "Stuck" in Paradise
      First stop for today is Gantheaume Point which is near the southern end of the peninsula that Broome sits on. Theres a lighthouse here but it looks more like someones plonked a large lantern on a water tank stand than the sort of lighthouses we're