Travel: Girlfriend Getaways

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– Family Features
DESTINATION GIRLFRIEND: More and more women are taking trips together, prompting hotels and travel agencies to offer girlfriend getaway packages.

Getting away from work and personal responsibilities, relaxing, laughing and bonding with friends are just a few reasons why girlfriend getaways are becoming more popular than ever.

Approximately 32 million women took trips last year, and a lot of them were girlfriend getaways. According to the AAA Girlfriend Travel Research Project, these trips represent 4 percent of all U.S. leisure travel spending, which is almost $200 million a year.

What do these women do on their trips? Here is a breakdown of activities:

  • Dining out – 86 percent
  • Shopping – 74 percent
  • Spa visits – 73 percent
  • Going to the beach or pool – 70 percent

If this sounds good to you, then you’re ready to get away with the girls.

Planning a getaway can be tricky, so here are some tips to keep in mind.

Talk about money. Everyone involved needs to be honest about how much they can comfortably afford to spend. Remember that the point of the trip is to be together – it doesn’t have to be at a swanky resort or exotic locale.

Share the legwork. Each person should do some research on possible destinations. Find out about activities, accommodations, air fare and other potential costs. Then get together over coffee, discuss the details and pick a destination.

It’s helpful to have one person in charge of booking, handling the money and communicating with the group. However, when it comes to planning itineraries, meals and activities, it’s best to take turns. That way everyone has input into the fun.

Step outside your comfort zone. No group trip will thrill everyone all of the time. Be willing to go somewhere you’ve never been, try new types of food and do an activity you wouldn’t normally do.

Because girlfriend getaways are so popular, a number of hotels offer special packages to make the trips even more fun.