Once in a lifetime – Splurges – BootsnAll 2012 Indie Travel Challenge

Prompt #29: What do you splurge on when you travel?

What’s one thing that you are willing to spend more on while traveling? Why?

Once in a lifetime

When we travel, we keep a tight rein on our budget. But there are some things we spend extra on, such as private rooms, food and once-in-a-lifetime trips within a trip.

Private room

We generally stay in hostels, but spend extra for a private room. It gives us a quiet space to recharge, plus we like our husband-and-wife privacy. Down in the common room we love to talk with other travelers, but in our room we like it to just be us again.


Food on the road varies between budget and splurge. Often we’ll get our own brekky supplies and start the morning at the hostel. Over coffee, granola, yogurt and fruit, we use our breakfast time to plan the day. Lunch or dinner may also be a DIY affair, depending on the day and our inclination. Plus, we love exploring local markets, and grocery shopping is a great excuse to wander.


When in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, a dear friend recommended a must-try breakfast spot, and the next day we were there (the vodka-cured salmon was rich, flavorful and amazing). Honeymooning in Vancouver, BC, Canada, we splurged on dinner at the amazing (if hard to find) Salt Tasting Room, directions to which include “walk down Blood Alley.” Inside, we assembled succulent platters of cheeses, wines, fruit, and meat, all selected to complement one another.

You could say that we keep a budget so we know when to push the budget, and we are always willing to try a singular food experience.

Trips within a trip

There are experiences you can get from a trip that all but demand you ante up some budget. In Australia in 2008, we wanted to spend a few days sailing in the Whitsunday Islands. The trip was a splurge, no doubt, but 3 days spent with new friends, seeing sea turtles and giant clams while snorkeling, pointing endlessly at coral reefs, and spotting whales was without equal.

Oh, and the sailing was awesome. Our small group also included people who were learning to sail, so our captain made sure that they worked hard, while making sure that we put on some serious knots and zipped through the water.

At night we anchored off islands, drank wine and talked. And we would go up on deck, and get to know a new sky. We gazed at the Milky Way, and saw the Southern Cross.

We may never get to do it again. And that alone made it worth every penny.

Photo: Tamsin Slater

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