It’s okay to not go home for the holidays

marktkhMy husband and I recently watched the movie “Four Christmases.” Aside from being mostly un-funny and completely predictable, the movie started with a major plot flaw. The two main characters had spent the last three Christmases traveling to exotic destinations instead of visiting their families. But rather than tell their families they would be traveling simply because they wanted to travel, they lied and said they were volunteering. (If you’re thinking about renting this train wreck, let me save you the trouble: their flight gets cancelled, they spend the day visiting their crazy families, they break up, they make up, and they realize spending time with family is what really matters.)

Once I heard the premise, I was turned off. Why would the characters have to lie about their intentions? Why not just say, “sorry, we’re going out town?” This is the second Christmas for which my husband and I will be out of the country, and it’s a tradition we plan on continuing. Last year, though we left for Spain on December 26th, we decided not to make the trek to our hometown for Christmas. This year, we’ll actually be in South Africa for the holiday. With my husband’s limited vacation time, we like to schedule longer trips around when we can use a few “freebie” days of time off. We’ve been able to find some really great deals for flights around the holidays and we love the idea of ringing in the New Year in a foreign place.

We love our families and we enjoy spending time with them at the holidays, but we also love to travel, andthey understand that. Just like you shouldn’t say “I love you” only on Valentine’s Day, family time should exists outside of the holiday season. So we visit often and work in as much quality time as we can. There may not a tree in the living room, be we can celebrate all year round.

So if you’d rather spend your Christmas Eve skiing in the Alps or trekking across the Sahara, I say go for it. There’s no need to lie, there’s no need to feel guilty, and believe me, there’s no need to waste two hours of your life watching “Four Christmases.”

Photo credit: flickrolf via Flickr

Posted by | Comments (8)  | December 16, 2009
Category: Vagabonding Advice

8 Responses to “It’s okay to not go home for the holidays”

  1. brian Says:

    You’re coming accross as self-centered, and one day you might be wanting your family to visit you, but they’d rather be treking than making the holidays special for you. My mom loves the Christmas season, and I would never ditch her for the holiday so I can indulge whatever urge strikes me.

  2. Hugh Says:

    I agree with you on the movie. My fiance and I actually saw it in the theater last year and not only wasted 2 hours, but paid $23 to do so.

    Good point about going on vacation during the holidays to take advantage of extra days off. I’ve looked into this before but airfare is outrageously high. Any tips to finding competitive airfare and other deals for the holiday season?


  3. Says:

    “Family time should exists outside of the holiday season.” Amen to that! Going home for the holidays can be more of an adventure than traveling to a foreign country. It’s unbelievable how the “meanness” inside of people comes out during the holidays. Facing a wild pack of animals on an African Safari would be a better experience. People forget what the holidays are really about — spending time with the ones you love, not can you please buy be a Nintendo Wii or Xbox with a 52″ Plasma screen TV! There’s nothing wrong with traveling during the holidays. It would be fun to celebrate Christmas in a foreign country and partake in their festivities versus the “same old, same old.”

    BTW: The movie didn’t look that great. Rent it from the library versus a video store.

  4. brian | No Debt World Travel Says:

    I think it is great to get away for the holidays, because when you get together on the next holiday, you appreciate your family and the occasion more.

    Absence can make the heart grow fonder.

  5. rolf Says:

    If you use pictures from flickr please dont forget to link them back to theyr producer on flickr. Thank you !
    Hope you like my picture


  6. Scott Says:

    Vagabonding in itself is a selfish act. I agree with the first poster. To go off and tell your family that you can’t be there for Christmas and that some weeking in June will do instead is completely self-centered. I would never think of spending time with my family as “same old, same old”. Maybe it has to do more with you than your family.

  7. Friday Carousel — 12.18.09 | evolution you Says:

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