We all know that booking a holiday is an instant mood booster, even if our trip is weeks into the future. Knowing we have a holiday coming - and planning it out in our heads - helps gets us through those afternoon slumps in the office.
Also, if we’ve had a major life change - such as a new baby, big breakup, job promotion, moved to a new city - nothing can de-stress or recharge us quite like an escape from the quotidian.
In the same vein, if our lives are seriously lacking in excitement - and we’re just buried under a pile of paperwork - then a holiday provides the much-needed thrill of adventure and inspiration, whether that’s scuba diving in Crete or relaxing with a novel and a cocktail in Capri.
Truth is, we don’t really need an excuse for a holiday, but sometimes it’s fun to make one up anyway. Here are 10 reasons to get on your phone and book yourself a last-minute holiday immediately...
"If I Don't Book This Trip Now I'll Lose Money."
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We've all felt it: the panic of missing out on a really, really good deal. That panic is amplified when the deal involves us, the sun, the sand and a Cypriot beach. We need to go. Now.
"Our Kids Need To See The World Before They Turn Five."
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Travelling is amazing for kids: it opens their eyes to new experiences and cultures, helps them adapt to different environments and creates precious, lasting memories for the whole family. Plus, travelling with an infant under the age of 2 is a bonus because you don't have to pay for their flights. Of course, that first flight with a screaming infant or toddler is sheer hell. But once you get over that first bout of anxiety - and discover the power of Peppa Pig on the iPad - travelling with tots is truly magical.
"We Finally Found Someone To Look After Our Kids."
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While holidays with the kids can be totally fabulous, once you're a parent there's only one thing that's even better: trips sans kids. Once you have flown with children you'll understand how truly relaxing every aspect of flying and travel is when they're not with you. You will even enjoy going through security checks. We promise.
"I Need To Use Up My Miles/Companion Vouchers/Rewards Points Before They Expire."
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You know, when you decide you urgently need to go on that trip to Venice just so that the flight doesn't go to waste. No other reason to go to Venice, is there?
"Because I Haven't Been Anywhere In Ages... Well, In The Last Two Months."
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Millennial wanderlust has given lots of us the travel bug and the desire to experience the here and now, well, now. We're constantly looking for new places to inspire and thrill and the idea of one big holiday a year just isn't going to cut it anymore.
Which is why you see your friends' social media feeds showing their Russia trips - just in time for World Cup Fever - but only a couple of months after their mega-Japan tour and right before they head off to Tuscany for 10 days of vino-tourism. And that's just their summer hols schedule. So yes, you can definitely add in that extra trip to Austria/Turkey/Hong Kong last minute - just 'cause you feel like it.
"The 'I Need To Get My Friend Over A Serious Breakup' Trip."
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You can't plan for everything. And your best friend breaking up with their partner of a decade last week certainly wasn't what anyone was expecting. Now, we're not saying a getaway will solve everything, but a city break, beach escape or road trip somewhere exciting and new is a great way to refresh and recharge with the friends you love most. The odd Aperol Spritz won't hurt, either.
"I Need To Find Myself."
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You're burned out, exhausted and need a break. You also need some time for you... and doing a few downward dogs in your living room every other month isn't quite cutting it. There's nothing like a last-minute fitness retreat, cycle ride, or volunteering holiday abroad to help you refocus and find your inner balance.
"I'm Invited To The Destination Wedding Of My Friend's Husband's Cousin's Sister."
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OK, so you don't know the couple getting hitched that well. Or at all, really. But you got a last-minute invite and could use the holiday; they could use a few more witnesses to their wedded bliss. And you'll have a chance to bond with a best mate. Now then, what's the weather like in Barcelona this time of year?
"The Good-Old Business Trip Tag-Along."
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Your partner gets flown to Asia for work. You typically get to go to Slough. Not this time. This time, you're tagging along on your SO's work trip, and while they're spending the day in meetings, you'll do the sights, the eats and the treats. You'll also do some serious Instagramming. And then you can meet up for dinner and an evening stroll or show together. And repeat.
"Because I Really Need To Sniff A Boulangerie."
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Or gorge on Neapolitan pizza. Or... insert your favourite food, in your favourite destination, here. Thinking about the satisfaction you'll feel when you take that first bite is reason enough to book that journey right now. Bon voyage!