May 3

Inspiring Staycation Ideas for Couples You’re Gonna Love

Why vacation when you can staycation? Instead of stressing over visas, flights and that toothbrush you forgot to pack, just take it easy and create your own adventure from home.

Staycation ideas don’t have to be limited to sleeping in and wasting your vacation idling at home. Of course, if a lazy break is what you need, then you do you; but there’s so much more to an exciting, memorable or romantic staycation than just Netflix and chill. 

So if you’re struggling for ideas for a staycation, then read on.


Should I do a staycation?

Before you even start planning your staycation, you need to seriously consider whether it’s right for you; and if so, what type of staycation suits you. Generally speaking, staycations fit into two distinct categories: the pure stay-at-home vacation, and the local staycation. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.


Stay-at-home-vacation

For purists, a true staycation means never leaving your front door. The home itself is the attraction, accommodation and destination all rolled into one. Home staycation ideas are usually going to be much cheaper than any alternative, but they needn’t be more restrictive; on the contrary, your only limits are your imagination and drive to reinvent your home.

After all, while you’re on a staycation, you need to get in the mindset that you’re not at home in the conventional sense; instead you’re reinterpreting your living space as a vacation destination.

Ideally, you want to give your home a theme for your vacation – something to focus your time off and make it feel like something genuinely special and different.

Perhaps your theme could be related to a real world destination you’ve never visited (or an old favorite). Alternatively, the theme could be more oriented around an objective of the staycation.

For example, a staycation for couples could be themed around a second honeymoon, a date night, foodie adventure, anniversary staycation  or kid-free retreat.

If romantic staycation ideas aren’t what you’re looking for and would rather more time with the family, consider a kid-friendly theme, like a space adventure, superheroes or a games week. Or, go the whole hog and invite your extended family around for a week of backyard barbecues, reminiscing and catching up on lost time.

Overall, these types of staycations are best for people who are prepared to to a little planning ahead of time to reinvent their home, before settling in for a totally care free time out.


The local staycation

Of course, just because you’re on a staycation, doesn’t mean you’re under house arrest. Some of the best staycation activities for couples  can be found in your own town, you just don’t know about them yet.

Even the most ardent travelers often have barely scratched the surface of their own hometowns, and short trips can be some of the most rewarding. Even with rising travel costs in some parts, these local or domestic vacations are nonetheless almost universally more affordable, easier to plan and generally more relaxed than international vacations.

Consider taking a local staycation if you still want to feel like you’re a tourist, but at a more affordable, less time consuming and more laid back pace. You might want to stay at a local B&B or hotel.

If romantic hotel staycation ideas sound a little on the pricey side, consider house sitting or a home exchange. 


How can I get a cheap staycation?

Estimates for how much the average staycation costs can vary wildly, but for most Americans the cost tends to hover between one to two thousand dollars per week. If that’s more than you were expecting to hear, then welcome to the new normal.

As staycations have become more popular, they have also become somewhat pricier for many of us. Across the pond in the UK, for example, the average cost of a domestic vacation has surged by over 40 percent since 2020.

In some popular destinations like Brighton, hotel prices are nearly double pre-pandemic rates. Similar trends have also emerged in some popular locations in the US as well, as tourist-starved operators seek to recoup years of grim business. 

Having said that, costs can be cut down by planning your staycation outside of peak season. Even if you’re hardly moving, the cost of eating out, recreational activities and even limited transport can explode in cost over peak season.

Don’t let yourself get caught unprepared by sudden spikes in ride-sharing costs, drinks or admission fees, and make sure your staycation falls well outside peak season.

Alas, unusually high prices don’t mean the staycation is dead – far from it. The things to do on staycation have diversified over the pandemic. Home delivery options for everything from food to entertainment have proliferated beyond anything that could have been possible before 2020.

Not only that, but as we leave behind the lockdowns an entirely new, revamped tourism industry is coming out of hibernation. In particular, staycation ideas couples  and families are more flexible, local-friendly and and ultimately doable than ever before.

Before our staycation, I didn’t realize just how many staycation ideas for couples near me are actually available.


How can I make my staycation interesting?

If there’s one common threat you may have noticed, it’s that whatever staycation style you settle into, the secret to a good homebody holiday is a concept or theme to tie everything together.

To avoid slipping into the couch potato trap, make sure you have at least a general idea of why you are taking this staycation. After all, any conventional holiday will usually have at least some direction – visiting a famous site, trying a new activity, experiencing a new culture – and your staycation shouldn’t be any different.

Even if your theme is more about self discovery or quality time for your relationship, at least keep it consistent and focused. Heck, even if your theme is all about slobbing it out at home, at least do it right: buy yourself a new pair of pajamas and invest in any kind of twist on Neflix and chill formula.

Try setting up a projector in the backyard, or a sofa bed in the living room. If you’ve got kids, consider planning out your movie binge ahead of time, and printing out cinema style tickets to be distributed before each viewing.

Set up a screening schedule just like at the movies, and hand out sacks of popcorn individually. It’s all about the presentation, and a bit of forethought can turn a mediocre movie binge into a family event to remember for years. 


Do the touristy stuff you’ve never done before

When was the last time you visited a museum in your own city? What about all those cheesy tourist traps you’ve never dipped your toes in because, after all, you’re a local?

Wherever you live, there are undoubtedly historic sites worth your time, parks you’ve never visited and local specialties you’ve never had the impetus to try. 

couples staycation ideas

A staycation is the perfect opportunity to get to know your own territory a bit better, though admittedly it can be a bit of a head scratcher as to where to start. Be like a tourist, and try getting yourself a guidebook for your own city or state.

 You may also want to consider starting by looking into any tourist buses or other deals that combine various destinations in one. Depending on where you live, these can be very affordable ways to see a lot in a short period of time. 


How can I enjoy my staycation at home?

First, you need to abandon all semblance of normal life and the responsibilities it comes with. First, the don’ts:


On your staycation, never do any of the following:

Answer any work calls, emails, messages...whatever

You work while you’re at work, not while you’re on vacation. If you are interrupting your staycation with those “it’ll only take a moment” little crumbs of responsibility, then you might as well go back to the office. Never respond to any work-related communication during your vacation.

No chores

Just because you’re staying home, doesn’t mean you’re allowed to do housework. Just like your job, it’s going to have to wait.

staycation for couples


Don’t just do what you’d normally do anyway

It’s a staycation, not an extended slouch on the couch. If you treat your staycation like a lazy weekend, then you’re not really going on vacation. Put some effort into it, and plan something genuinely memorable.


The do’s:

Handle all work matters before you go on vacation. If you leave unfinished business behind at the office, then you’ll probably end up having to deal with it right at the moment you finally start relaxing during your vacation, thus breaking the first rule of how to enjoy a staycation.

Clean up first

Make sure your home is in a good state before you start your staycation. Whether you’re traveling locally or locking yourself indoors, make sure your house is refreshing and ready.

Staycation how you vacation

Act how you would normally act on a normal vacation. If you like to carefully plan every detail of your usual holidays, then try to do something similar with your staycation. Likewise, if your typical vacations include any kind of opening ritual (we all have them), make sure you replicate it during your staycation.

couples breakfast home


Such rituals can range from a simple drink with friends to a nice meal with the family, a sleep in, polishing your hiking boots, throwing a party – whatever you do to start a typical trip, make sure it’s part of your staycation plan.

Otherwise, it just won’t feel like you’re on vacation.


What do you do on a staycation night?

Staycations for couples really come into their own at night. After a day of adventure, a couples staycation can be an opportunity to reconnect and fall in love again.

To start your romantic staycation, consider preparing a campfire, either at home or responsibly at a camping site. If starting a fire sounds intimating to you, just roll some toilet paper into a few cone shapes, then fill with cooking oil and place among some kindling.

couples bonfire

Slowly heap your heavier wood on top, leaving plenty of space for the fire to breathe. Then, arm up your s’mores.

Once it gets too cold outside, the obvious next step is to watch each other’s favorite movies – and enjoy it. It doesn’t matter if you can’t stand your partner’s favorite flick: take one for the team and find a way to like it.

Alternatively, one of the most idea couples staycation ideas is to settle down with your favorite books.

Even a chapter or two over a bottle of wine can make for a lovely couples staycation evening.


Breakfast in Bed

In the morning, one of the most fun staycation ideas for couples  enjoy breakfast in bed with your partner. Set yourself a sneaky alarm, and quietly tip-toe out before they wake up.

staycation

If you’re not much of a cook, one of the easier, but still fun staycation ideas for couples is to order in. One of the few silver linings of the pandemic has been the mushrooming of food on demand options.

A few years ago, ordering breakfast delivered might have been slim pickings, but not anymore. 


Try a picnic

Speaking of food, when was the last time you went on a picnic? Even if you don’t want to leave the house, there’s always space for a picnic either in the backyard, lounge room or even the bedroom.

Couple staycation ideas don’t get much better than collecting up a few of your favorite snacks and munchies from the supermarket or farmers’ market. It’s definitely one of the most romantic staycation ideas at home.


Scavenger hunt

You may want to consider combining two great staycation ideas for couples  into one: a picnic with a scavenger hunt. If you’re looking for staycation ideas for couples with kids, then this is the one to really pay attention to. Kids love following clues and finding treasure.

Give it a theme, put together a few clues and hide your prizes around the house.

 It’ll give you and your partner a cornucopia of free time to relish the more romantic staycation ideas.


What is the perfect staycation?

Remember the number one rule of a staycation: make sure it’s a real vacation. Even if you can’t leave your front door, you can still travel anywhere you’d like by creating a theme room. If you have a spare room, prepare for your staycation by converting it into an indoor oasis.

A few hammocks, some beach towels, a short trip to Home Depot and a little bit of imagination can easily turn a corner of your home into a tropical beach.

You get extra points if you layer the floor with sand and somehow figure out a why to keep it from tracking through the rest of your house!

If you don’t have a spare room, a yard or patio can offer even more avenues for your creativity for staycation couple ideas .

For a cool staycation married couples with kids option, make your yard, room or other space into a home safari. Decorate your space according to the destination: lush ferns and flowers for the Amazon, taller, more disparate foliage for an African escape, and anything with pine for a mountain retreat.

For the kids, get some plush animals and hide them around your space for them to find. For an extra treat, consider setting up a projector and watching a movie related to your destination, and consider preparing some country-specific cuisine.

Even with the costs of effectively renovating a chunk of your home, it’s still a cheap staycation for couples or families.


Final thoughts

Whether you choose to stay at home or explore your immediate surroundings staycation ideas don’t start and end at merely an extended weekend. Make the most of your vacation with a little planning, preparation and direction. Whichever ideas for staycations  you opt for, make it memorable.


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