The “What’s Next” Conundrum

I find myself a little uninspired these days. I’ve been dragging my feet on wrapping up my Maldives trip report (I got back two months ago!). The biggest problem is one I face often…the “what’s next” feeling.

Mandhoo Conrad Maldives Views
I definitely wasn’t feeling uninspired here!

The points and miles world can be really exciting, but when you return home and your next points trip is to fly to Detroit for the holidays to spend time with family it’s hard to get excited (no matter how much I love spending time with family!).

The last two years

It’s REALLY hard to follow up a bucket list trip. Plus in the past two years I’ve done quite a few trips:

  • Honeymoon flying Japan Airlines and Cathay Pacific First Class with stays at the Ritz Tokyo and Ritz Bali 
  • 5 nights at the all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva Cabo over New Year’s using British Airways Avios from PHX, a Hyatt credit card signup bonus, and Chase Ultimate Rewards points transferred to Hyatt.
  • A trip to Sonoma and Napa using Marriott points for the Lodge at Sonoma and using Avios to fly into the charming Santa Rosa airport 
  • The above mentioned Hong Kong and Maldives trip
  • Plenty more domestic trips…

So now, sadly, my husband and I are at the point where we can’t take another two week vacation anytime soon. Work really is a bummer (when will this blog let me quit my job!?)

So what is next?

I still have some pretty healthy points balances when taking a look at my AwardWallet account, but not enough for two first class tickets to anywhere in the world. Plus, not a lot of vacation time given other commitments I have next year.

So oddly enough, after weighing lots of options for a 5 night vacation, in the wintertime, I decided on…the Bay Area.

Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay
Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay (photo courtesy of the Ritz-Carlton website)

I thought a lot about it and something seemed really relaxing about just taking a short non-stop flight, going to amazing restaurants, and not needing to adjust to a time zone halfway across the world. There is definitely a feeling within the point and miles community that the more lavish and distant a destination the better. But my husband and I both love San Francisco; in fact it was the first vacation we ever went on together. So why should I feel like using points and miles to only go two hours away isn’t exciting enough?

Either way, maybe reviewing my coach American Airlines seats won’t be Instagram worthy, but a trip to a place I love, to relax for 5 nights, certainly isn’t a bad use of points. More on where we’re staying later but we will be spending at least two of the nights at the above Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay which goes for at least $700/night – not a redemption to sneeze at!

Bottom Line

The best thing about using points is being able to do trips you wouldn’t normally do, not necessarily seeing how much time you can spend in a first class seat. I definitely fell into the trap of seeing big bloggers next big trips and feeling like I needed a big next trip too but ultimately, even though I won’t be wandering around Europe for a month, I have a relaxing, gorgeous vacation in the works where I will come back rested and refreshed, not fighting jet-lag.

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