Dining at Radiator in Logan Circle, Washington, D.C.

I spent Labor Day weekend at home in Washington, D.C. with my cousins this year, and it reinforced why a staycation can sometimes be so much more enjoyable than a vacation. Here are eight reasons why a staycation can be the perfect way to spend your next long weekend.

1. You won’t have to factor in travel time – because there will be no travel time. 

I took an Uber exactly 8 minutes and 1.5 miles to our Airbnb.

2. You know the city/area, and can pick and choose exactly what you want to do to have a good time.

Being the local of the bunch, I was able to line up some activities that I knew everyone would enjoy. No guessing, no research, just inside knowledge from five years of trial and error. We went to the District’s best all-you-can-drink special, danced the night away at a local bar, got homemade pop-tarts from a local restaurant/bakery, ate dinner at a highly rated new spot on the buzzy 14th Street Corridor, spent an afternoon in the park listening to drummers at one of D.C.’s best summer cultural activities, and got all-you-can-eat sushi at my favorite sushi place which flies completely under the radar. We had an awesome time with little advance research or reservations required.

3. You can see a new part of the city and/or stay somewhere that you normally wouldn’t stay.

Our Airbnb was located in the completely redeveloped 14th Street Corridor, a popular bar and restaurant area that I frequent but don’t live near. I loved being able to step out of the Airbnb and experience what life is like in this affluent area of the District.

Another benefit was being able to spend a few days in a row home, a type of house that D.C. is known for. We had the entire three-bedroom home to ourselves and got to live the high life for three days for about $50 per person per night – less than any hotel in the area.

Here are some photos of our sweet pad.

4. Which leads me to my next point: You save money on airfare and other travel expenses. 

My roundtrip “travel” expenses were a whopping $12 with Uber. We also split groceries and alcohol for when we weren’t eating out, which kept costs way down versus eating out all the time. My total costs for the weekend, including the Airbnb, were about $200. Far less than a plane flight, hotel and eating out every meal!

Bonus: Having a full kitchen enabled us to make mac and cheese three nights in a row, because what better snack is there after a night out?

5. If you have friends or family joining from out of town, you can show off your area!

And I did! Here is some of what we did.

6. You can involve your friends in your activities.

I had 3-5 friends join us every night that we were out, so they got to meet my family and check out our sweet crash pad. While not everyone may want to invite friends into their staycation (because then it might feel too much like a normal weekend at home), I enjoyed introducing my family to the people I spend most of my time with in DC.

7. You can do things you normally wouldn’t do, because, vacation! 

Like the aforementioned mac and cheese binge.

And eating obscene amounts of sugar for breakfast.

And going out three nights in a row.

And going to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History (yes, we did do something besides drink and eat).

And picnicking in a park with your whole family.

8. Or, you can do nothing at all. Because at the end of the day, you define your staycation and you should do exactly what you want to do!

What other advantages are there to staycations? Let me know in the comments!

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8 reasons to make your next long weekend a staycation