When Your Travel Plans Go Differently

After a number of trips I’ve taken over the past few years, I’ve learned something very important: it’s okay if your plans end up going differently than what you have imagined them to be so.

This was very difficult for me to understand when I started travelling because I had always created sort of like a vision of how my trip would sort of go before actually even going on the trip. And I hadn’t realized back then how bad it was to do so.

It’s different when you are excited for a particular trip and think about the fun times you might have there, than when you are expecting the trip to go the way you planned it out to be. Because then, you are setting yourself up for travel misery if things don’t go the way you had wanted them to go as.

Here are four examples that I had gone through on four different trips. Don’t get me wrong, I still had a FANTASTIC time on each of those trips, but it’s so important not to let the smallest of things get to you.



Summer of 2015, I had gone to Chicago again, but this time for Lollapalooza and to show my friend around as well. From Chicago we were flying out to London for a little less than two weeks, and we had been planning that summer trip for a good 5 months or so before because we were THAT excited. It was going to be another one of our girls trips!

Long story short- about less than a month before departing, she ended up inviting her husband on our trip. My problem was that I wasn’t asked if it would be alright with me, just kind of letting me know he’d be tagging along. I tried being alright with it and I was, until we were in Chicago and I felt like I was third wheeling my own trip.



I had surprised my older brother for Christmas of 2015 with flights and hotel booked for Vancouver for March 2016. We both had a wonderful time, but originally I had wanted to explore more of the nature side of Vancouver than its city life. And unfortunately, that was where my brother and I had our travel differences. However, I decided that I’d just have to come back sometime and explore Vancouver the way I had originally wanted to.



So New York ended up being a completely different kind of trip I’d ever thought of taking. For a city known as “The City That Never Sleeps,” NYC has completely proven that to me. Being so accustomed to every trip being all about sightseeing, trying this and that, eating here and there, and doing everything I possibly can in such a short amount of time- I broke away from that habit (probably just this one time though, but who knows).

Ideally, that was my plan as usual once I got here to cross all my bucket list items that I’ve put together a few days before departing from my city. However, because it was so cold (more than I’m used to back in California) and the sun had set by 5 p.m. it was difficult to accomplish in getting a lot of things done.

So, New York City ended up not being my typical city where I play tourist… New York City gave me its nightlife and I never rested (well, I did, but late into the morning). My reason for having visited New York City- to party it up.



I had ideally gone to Phoenix for a music festival, so everything turned out more than perfect for that! However, on our free days (about 3 days) we were unable to do a lot of activities because it was raining a lot during our trip. So our once really-excited-last-minute hiking plans ended up being a complete fail. BUT we had a really fun time getting prepared and doing last minute shopping for a hike that never happened!


All of my trips had different outcomes than what I had thought they’d be like, but I still had a wonderful time during all of them! And that’s what matters! So, if you ever find yourself in a situation like I was during one of your vacations, just remember these helpful tips:

  • Learn from your previous trips and any mistakes that had occurred
  • Learn to be more open-minded
  • Voice your opinions
  • Don’t let your negativity ruin anybody else’s trip
  • Be appreciative of everything you’re experiencing
  • Be happy

Make the most out of every trip. Life isn’t meant to be perfect and neither is travelling.

Do you have any awkward/bad experiences from travelling?

13 thoughts on “When Your Travel Plans Go Differently

  1. I love your wrap up at the end. Especially the last one, “Be happy.” That is the best one. Traveling should be happy. For me, traveling usually means bringing my kids along, it can be stressful but our main goal is to be happy and make memories. It sounds like you did that!


  2. I tend to be a not spur of the moment kinda girl. I hate surprises. When I plan for things to go one way and they don’t, I usually have a small meltdown. I am glad you can go with the flow because I imagine that when traveling plans often go awry


  3. I used to have a hard time when things don’t go as planned, especially on trips! But recently I visited NY and decided to go with the flow, and the trip turned out to be more fun 🙂 I got to spend time with my friends without being in a hurry (bc we’re not following a schedule), and I think that’s what traveling is about. Being happy (like what you said on your closing) and just making memories 🙂


  4. One of my favorite parts of travel is that it forces me into uncomfortable situations all the time. Great things never come from comfort zones!


  5. I’m two and a half weeks into a road trip and already the plans have changed multiple times. I agree, if you learn from it and have a good attitude it definitely turns out great (and sometimes better than expected)!

    Liked by 1 person

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