How I Visited 14 Destinations In A Year Without Quitting My Job

travel with a full time job

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know that 2017 was a big year of travel for me. In 12 months I took 11 flights, visited 14 destinations and managed to travel for 52 days of the year while only using 22 days of annual leave. Not bad, hey?

Today I thought I’d share my tips, tricks and travel examples with you to show you how I managed to travel with a full time job. If one of your new year’s resolutions is to travel more, this post should come in very handy indeed…

(If you’re interested in reading where exactly I visited in 2017, make sure to read this post!)

I made the most of my weekends

One thing that really helped me to travel to more destinations last year was making the most of my weekends. Around half of the trips I took in 2017 were squeezed into a weekend, meaning I could squeeze in extra travel time without dipping into any annual leave.

It’s super easy to visit UK destinations in a weekend if you hit the road straight after work on Friday, but I’ve also managed to squeeze weekends in Europe in by taking a late night flight on a Friday and heading home on Sunday afternoon.

It can be a brilliant way of breaking up long periods of time between more substantial trips!

travel with a full time jobI utilised the bank holidays

As well as maximising my weekends for travel, I also made sure that I made the most of the bank holidays for travel in 2017. Three of my trips took place over a bank holiday weekend, which mean that I got three bonus days of travel without dipping into annual leave.

It’s true that flights and accommodation can be a bit more expensive over bank holidays, but if you plan ahead you can usually still get a pretty good deal. If cost still remains an issue for you, why not use the bank holiday weekend to visit friends and family who live in a different place to you and explore their home turf?

I squeezed multiple destinations into my trips

One of my favourite travel tips is to squeeze multiple destinations into one trip. There are two ways you can do this – either by making the most of your flights by hitting up multiple locations in one area (as we did when we visited Bilbao and San Sebastian), or by breaking up a longer journey with a stopover en route.

Doing this not only means better value for money on your flights, but it’s also a more efficient way of visiting a few places as you can squeeze more into your travel time.

I used the little and often approach

One of the things that really helped me up my travel quota last year was by taking the little and often approach. Rather than booking any epic two week long haul holidays, I opted for short but sweet trips to more local destinations.

I think this is a great solution if you’re someone who loves to travel regularly but still has a full time job to hold down as it means you never have to go too long without a trip. Plus, you can squeeze in lots of new destinations too!

travel with a full time jobI planned ahead

My final tip that helped me travel so much in 2017 is that I planned ahead. Rather than waiting until the end of the year and realising I had annual leave leftover, I planned and organised to make sure I’d made the most of every single day of holiday I had.

I would thoroughly recommend sitting down sometime this month and looking at your calendar for the year ahead. Work out when you can take some annual leave and how best to cut it up to achieve as many of your travel goals as possible and then get it booked! That way you won’t be tempted to change your plans to fit around your work schedule.

So there you have it – the secrets behind how I visited 14 destinations in a year without quitting my job. Do you have any other tips for balancing travel with a full time job?

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  • Hayley Rubery

    Girl I loved this post – I’m SO impressed by how much you travelled with a full time job, that’s amazing! Completely agree with making the most of your weekend and taking smaller trips, Ben really doesn’t have great holiday allowance at work so we’re going to take smaller trips, we’re off to Amsterdam soon just for the night but it’s great to get away and explore somewhere new! Can’t wait to follow your travels in 2018! <3

    Hayley xo

    • It’s surprising how much you can squeeze into just one weekend! x

  • I was hoping for you to write a post like this, you really did so well in 2017 with your travel. I’m sat busy trying to plan for this year. My holiday allowance is a measly 20 days so it does make it more difficult but I’m determined to visit at least 3 new cities or countries abroad this year (sounds pitiful against your 14 but that’s better than 0 😉 ) Totally understand if you’d rather not share it, but I’d be so interested to know roughly how the costs break down for your trips? Alice xxx

    • Ooooh, maybe that could be another post in itself as I really do keep things cheap! x

  • Ooh this is super helpful Sophie! I always want to squeeze more travel into my year – little and often sounds like the best way, discovering more of Europe whilst I’m at it! Immy x

  • Sarah Weaver

    The 3 day weekends / bank holidays really are key! You really can squeeze in a decent amount of traveling without even having to take extra days! 🙂


  • I can’t believe how much you managed to fit in to 22 days of annual leave, that’s amazing! I got to 9 destinations in the end last year, but it is true that taking a holiday holiday eats into the amount you can fit in – we ended up using 6 days of our annual leave for a 7 night holiday to Rhodes, which is a fairly big chunk! I could really do with taking a leaf out of your book with planning ahead, that would help with the financial side too – let’s hope I’ll be more organised in 2018 xxx

    Sophie | Sophar So Good

    • Yeah, booking ahead really does save you money! x

  • How on earth you travelled to that many destinations in one year is crazy!!! I can’t even travel to one in a year!!


    • It took a bit of planning but it was worth it! x

  • I’ve never really considered doing weekend trips that involve Friday and Sunday flights but it’s really not a bad idea, especially considering how cheaply you can travel! I can’t believe you managed to squeeze so much in, well done!! xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Life, Travel, Italy

    • Thanks Lucy, it can be tiring to just do it in a weekend but it’s super fun too 🙂 x

  • Wow. 14! It a goal and mission of mine to visit as many places as I can this year.

    Leonie ♥ Lo On The Go