Friday, January 16, 2009
I've been hearing this word a lot in the media recently and I suspect it's an occurrence that will only increase in volume as the chipperly named "Credit Crunch" continues to bite.
Basically people can no longer afford holidays abroad anymore. Even more basically people can no longer afford holidays in their own country anymore.
Bognor... Blackpool... Lyme Regis... Centre Parcs... Butlins...
All too damned pricey in this current climate, mate, and that's even before you've counted the cost of getting there, meals, ice creams every day for the kids, the odd spot of bungee jumping, the "penny" arcade, watching Roy Chubby Brown harrumphing his dead horse of an act across an unwashed, ply wood stage...
Much cheaper to stay at home. And more convenient. The kids can have the PlayStation: they're happy. Mum and dad can have a lie-in without the fear of having to mug up on the artefacts in the Museum / London Dungeon / Art Gallery that inevitably constitutes the compulsory "cultural" part of the holiday: they're happy. And the car doesn't break down on the hard shoulderless stretch of the M40: the AA are happy.
Nobody is really missing out on anything.
I must admit, Karen and I abandoned plans for a week away last August and instead pottered around the house, visited friends and tried to spend as little money as possible whilst extracting the most amount of fun from our time off together. I have to say I really enjoyed it.
Not that I've hated my holiday times in Wales, or Italy, or... er, the hundreds of other places that I've been to. But sometimes - let's be honest - holidays can be exhausting. How many of us have come back from a holiday so tired that strictly speaking we could do with another week off just to rest and recover?
So why not just have the week's rest? Why not have a week at home doing something that you rarely get a chance to do in life: enjoy being at home (without being "off sick")?
You could save more than just a few pennies. You could save your energy, cut down on stress and improve your health.
Now I realize I'm probably not doing my bit for the economy by discouraging people to spend their money and I'll be the first to admit I'm flicking my V's at the current batch of gormless Thomson's adverts that are doing the rounds on TV ("...go on, book a holiday with us, you're money is safe, honestly, we're not going to go bust...") but, much as I enjoy foreign travel (and I do), a staycation is just right up my street.