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On the Road Again | Summer Travel Tips for Great Trips

Photography by Carlye Klick

 Make the most of your vacation with summer travel tips from ICONIC LIFE Publisher Renee Dee.

Every summer road trip as a kid started with—I kid you not—my mother singing the famous Willy Nelson line, as we indeed got “on the road again.” A bit off tune, but always on point, that little song was her way of transitioning from life as we know it to vacation mindset. And it worked.

As the years went on and as I traveled as an adult, I have found that I need an intention break from my daily pursuits to embrace the eminent rest and relaxation ahead. Sometimes it’s switching gears to read a magazine (still the best way to escape the rigors of daily life) and sometimes it was closing my eyes for a quick nap, only to wake up knowing that I was officially on vacation. 


What I have found is that work and play don’t really mix well. I’ve got to be focused on vacation on vacation and work during work. People often ask me, “do you find it challenging to get away or to take your mind off of work?” 


Absolutely not.

When I leave on vacation, I create an instant separation, savoring every moment of my getaway and making a commitment to be present and in the moment. When I do that, and I can do that, I feel incredibly rested when it’s all over. I see no reason to book myself into a five-star luxury resort, sit by one of the world’s most beautiful pools and answer emails. 

Some of my other favorite summer travel tips are these:

  • Be a local. I’m fanatical about not doing things on vacation that I could do at home. I love digging into local dining and really getting a feel for a place.
  • Pack light! Depending on where you are going, you could be carrying what you’ve packed. And, it’s so much faster to pack and unpack if you have less. Similar colors in your bag make it easy to mix and match. 
  • Empower someone to be in charge while you’re gone to manage home and work life.
  • Don’t check more than one device. If you really need to be reached, don’t let your team message you on email, Slack, text and voicemail all together. Pick one. ”I’ll check text, so if you need me, message me there.”
  • Don’t over schedule! Make a list of to-dos and to-don’ts. Have you ever been stressed to get to the spa? I save the massage for when I’m at home and keep my schedule open on vacation so I can enjoy every whim, including not getting up and going to the spa. The same goes for off-property dinner reservations. Sometimes it’s just nice to stay close and dine on property when you’re done enjoying that evening’s sunset.
  • Post your social media when you are home. Enough said.
  • Put a luggage tracker tag in your bag. Last summer’s luggage disaster at Heathrow taught everyone that it’s a good idea to be able to track your bag, especially when your airline doesn’t know where it is.
  • Never underestimate the many ways you can use Zip-Lock bags on a trip—I keep a bunch stuffed into a side compartment of my bag, and use them for everything from storage for a wet bikini to holding ice for my travel companion who blew out his back.
  • Pack some healthy snacks. It’s good for the belly and the budget.
  • Drink water. The most common advice for everything is to drink plenty of water, however, when you are on vacation, it always seems there’s not enough water in your room or wherever you are. Purchase lots of water when you arrive at your destination and make it your goal to drink it before you depart. It will make everything better.
  • Have fun! You’re on vacay!


Wishing you an ICONIC summer filled with wonderful travel and wonderful memories to go with it! I hope to see you on the beach!

With Gratitude,

Renee M. Dee

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