There are lots of benefits to having a holiday. It’s a chance to relax and recharge your batteries, but it can also be an opportunity for adventure. You get to meet new people and experience a culture and way of living that’s different to yours. There’s also the opportunity to see some of the world’s most famous sites. If you want all of this and more, you need to pick the perfect destination.

We live in an age when travel is more affordable and easier than ever before, but with endless possibilities, the process of deciding on a destination can be overwhelming. Sticking a pin in a travel brochure is leaving too much to luck. A much better approach is to apply a few key criteria when planning your holiday.

The Time of Year

When you’re planning to go on holiday the time of year is a very important factor to consider. If you’re working, your options may be limited as there will be other employees that need to take their holidays too. When timing is not a problem, and you’re free to choose any time of the year, think what you’d like to be doing. If you want to try a skiing holiday, then winter is obviously the best time of the year. Sunbathing on a tropical beach, on the other hand, is not an option in the middle of winter.

The availability of things to do is also going to be affected by the time of year. For example, festivals and sporting events around the world only happen at certain times.

Travelling out of peak season is always an attractive option if you’re worried about cutting costs. However, is the saving really worth it if there’s nothing to do when you get to your destination?

The weather is very much dependent on the time of year you’ll be travelling, so think about whether you’d prefer cooler temperatures because you’re planning to do lots of site-seeing or plenty of sun because you want to work on your tan. Your weather preferences are going to help narrow down your options but bear in mind that prices can soar during peak seasons. If you choose to travel out of season, the weather may still be pleasant enough, but you might not get what you’re ideally looking for.

What You Want from Your Holiday

This is a very important criterion and can seriously affect your choice of destination. If you’re travelling with children, you might want the experience to be an educational one. In which case you need to consider a sightseeing trip filled with visits to museums, historical attractions or opportunities for cultural experiences.

If you’re travelling as a couple and you want to enjoy some luxurious surroundings, with lots of opportunities for enjoying downtime and quality time together, Algarve holidays spent in a luxury villa might be the perfect spot you’re looking for.

When adventure is part of your travel plans, you need to consider an epic hike or a destination that provides lots of opportunities for you to try something new such as scuba diving, surfing, or white-water rafting.

Your Interests

This might seem pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t take it into consideration. The perfect destination is bound to be one that fits your hobbies and interests. With so many people offering advice it’s easy to follow their lead and choose the same holiday. However, no two people are alike, and we all have completely different interests. Even if it’s your best friend praising a particular location, there’s no guarantee you’re going to like it as well.

Don’t worry about missing out on the next big holiday destination. Ask people why they chose to go there before booking your plane ticket. Always remember to consider your interests, and those of your family if you’re travelling as a group. A dream destination for one person doesn’t make it the same for you.

Your Budget

Budget is another huge consideration when you’re looking for the perfect holiday destination. However, it’s not always something people think about before booking a flight. You’re going to come across destinations that are far more budget-friendly than others, so make sure you know how much you’ve got to spend on your holiday. That includes not only the cost of travel but accommodation, entertainment, food and getting around as well.

The internet is a great tool to have in your holiday planning kit because you can research how much things are going to cost. If you choose the right sites to visit you’ll have no problem finding out the cost of local transport, accommodation, eating out, buying essential, tours, and entrance fees.

Who You’re Travelling With?

The people you’re going to be travelling with are going to make a difference to the destination you choose. If you’re travelling with a loved one and looking for a romantic location, the options are going to be very different from those who are holidaying as a family. Solo travellers are also going to have a range of different options that might not be suitable for other types of travellers.

When you’re travelling as a group, finding the perfect location is a little more difficult because you’ve got other people to consider. It’s very likely you’re not going to please everyone which means there has to be a certain amount of compromise.

There are several different resources and tools you can use to help in your holiday destination quest. Pinterest, for example, has a visual search engine that’s perfect if you’re looking for visual images of a particular destination. Similarly, Instagram can be used to search for real-life images of holiday destinations. Alternatively, you could do it the old-fashioned way and buy yourself some coffee table travel books. There are also a ton of travel blogs online that can be used for even more inspiration.

Travelling can provide you with a wealth of different experiences as long as you know what you’re looking for and where to look. Apply these criteria when you’re making plans, and you’ll find the perfect destination for your upcoming holiday.