I’m trying something a bit different this week. I am attempting to unplug from the world while still being in civilization. I’m not the sort of person that enjoys going off in the woods without any communication with the outside world. I like to be around people and lively places. However, this doesn’t always work out when you are looking to unplug and actually take a vacation. I check into hotels and they make it next to impossible to unplug. The Internet is even built into the TV. There’s a little dock for my phone so it can forever be charged in case someone needs me.
Unplugging but still staying in the world is not an easy task. I have found a few simple practices you can try at your hotel to ensure you tune out the world at least for a little while.
Use Alarm Clocks and Wake-up Calls not Cellphones: I’m doing something I never do. I’m shutting my phone off while I sleep. While this may sound a bit extreme depending on what side of the spectrum you fall, I am always waking up throughout the night to the pings of an email or text message. If you want to truly get a restful night’s sleep, shut your phone off or turn off the ringer once you head back in for the evening. Let someone else wake you up in the morning for once rather than the alarm of emails from 2AM onwards.
Book Hotels with Pools: There might be nothing more relaxing than taking a swim on vacation. I often check the pool amenity box when I search for a hotel. Surprisingly, these spaces can be great spots to unplug. You can bring a book rather than your smartphone and just enjoy the chlorine scene. You are also less likely to want to bring your laptop around water, leaving it all behind back at the room for a swim and lounge session.
Look for Rooms with Soundproofing: I have a bit of a problem when it comes to hotel reviews. I tend to over read, obsessing over one guest’s bad experience with the huffy concierge. However, I don’t ignore claims of paper-thin walls or lack of soundproofing. Part of unplugging and actually going on vacation involves trying to get away from annoyances and noise. If you are angry over your hotel room’s lack of soundproofing you aren’t resting and relaxing. When you book accommodations, look for soundproofing in the room description. If you can’t find a property that values good insolation, select a hotel that isn’t massive. Larger hotels tend to be noisy and less focused on the well being of each guest.
Don’t worry about Wi-Fi: On this road trip to Texas, I booked hotels I liked, not so much ones that had free WiFi. Generally when I travel, I won’t stay at places that charge the price of a second room for WiFi. However if you are looking to unplug, don’t even worry about this amenity. If there is WiFi for free, chances are you will use it. If you find out they charge for WiFi, you might be less inclined to fire up the laptop for just an hour a day. By not making WiFi a priority at your hotel, you are already putting your mind in a different place. You don’t become some WiFi monster, crazy over getting a good connection, but rather someone who doesn’t care if it’s there or not.
What are your tips for unplugging at a hotel?
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