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5 Travel Resolutions You Should Make in 2016

Resolve to plan out your vacation days and start thinking about your travel goals for 2016.

In a month riddled with diet fads, 2015 year recaps, resolution making, and gym membership discounts, the travel world is often overlooked. While you may be still be recovering from the post-holiday blues, it is important to plan out your vacation days and start thinking about your travel goals for 2016, too. Take a look at five ways we’re resolving to travel better in the upcoming year.

Visit a National Park

2016 is the centennial year for America’s national parks (in case you haven’t heard) with free admission on select days in the upcoming year. The National Park Service has launched the Find Your Park initiative to make finding parks around you even easier. With over 400 parks nationwide, it’s worth trying to see more than just one.

RELATED: 10 Secret Spots in America’s Top National Parks

Travel Lighter, Healthier, and Smoother

If you’re trying to be healthier and happier, you can apply this resolution to travel too. For trips under a week make a goal to take just a carry-on. To travel healthier, pack your own food on your next flight, book a running city tour at your next urban destination, and organize an adventure activity on your next vacation. Register for TSA Precheck and STEP for smoother travel, and don’t forget to look into travel insurance, especially when traveling abroad.

RELATED: The Ultimate Checklist for Traveling Abroad

Book a Trip on Your Bucket List

Everyone has them, whether it’s a list of dream destinations, an adventure list, or a checklist of places in the world you’d like to see—pick one destination on yours and just book it. I did this last year to Phuket, Thailand and it was one of the best trips I took in 2015. If you’re worried about money, start a ‘Vacation Fund’ jar in your home and deposit a set amount each week.

RELATED: 10 Dream Trips You Can Actually Afford in 2016

Travel Solo

If you’ve never traveled alone before, make this the year you book a solo trip. Despite the myth that traveling alone is unsafe, it’s one of the best ways to make new friends, be more comfortable with yourself, and be completely independent (all probably things on your resolution list anyways).

RELATED: What You Learn By Traveling Alone

Take a Weekend Road Trip

Road trips are one of the least expensive ways to explore your surroundings—no matter what the season is. In winter, take a trip to ski or snowshoe, in springtime visit areas with spring blossoms, in summer find your nearest (or farthest) body of water, and in fall discover amazing foliage.

RELATED: Don’t Leave Home Without These Road-Trip Essentials

More from SmarterTravel:

Ashley Rossi is always ready for her next trip. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram for more advice on travel hacks and destination ideas.

(Photo: Pen on Notebook with Compass via Shutterstock)

By Ashley Rossi

Ashley Rossi is always ready for her next trip. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram for travel tips, destination ideas, and off the beaten path spots.

After interning at SmarterTravel, Ashley joined the team full time in 2015. She's lived on three continents, but still never knows where her next adventure will take her. She's always searching for upcoming destination hotspots, secluded retreats, and hidden gems to share with the world.

Ashley's stories have been featured online on USA Today, Business Insider, TripAdvisor, Huffington Post, Jetsetter, and Yahoo! Travel, as well as other publications.

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "A reusable filtered water bottle—it saves you money, keeps you hydrated, and eliminates waste—win-win."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "A week in a bamboo beach hut on India's Andaman Islands."

Travel Motto: "Travel light, often, and in good company."

Aisle, Window, or Middle Seat: "Window—best view in the house."