The Most Spontaneous Thing I Have Ever Done

Words on Irish Landscape reading "The Most Spontaneous Thing I Have Ever Done"

Last night I did one of the most spontaneous things I have ever done: I booked a flight to Dublin, Ireland on a whim!! I felt a bit crazy for booking my first overseas trip with less than an hour of thought and absolutely zero planning besides a quick Google search for “How expensive is Dublin?”

For months now I had been talking with a friend of mine who wants to do some travelling in the fall, we had hoped to go to Europe together or meet up at some point, but hadn’t planned anything specific. So it was in the back of my mind to do a trip at the end of September, but nothing was set. I kept going back and forth in my mind between “I should save my money since I don’t have a solid career right now, and I don’t know where I’ll be in the future” to “I want to travel while I’m young! I’ll regret it when I’m older if I don’t!”

After the whole Brexit fiasco and the drop in the pound, I joked on Facebook I was looking for cheap flights to London, only half thinking I would actually go travelling anytime soon. I even looked at flights, nothing had changed, of course, London wasn’t going anywhere and people will probably always want to visit it.

Then a few days later I got an email from Air Canada: A Canada Day seat sale was happening! Oh? Sale. Hmmm, maybe they’ll be something to Europe. $500-600 flights to London or Paris. Tempting. Very tempting. I didn’t look into specific dates or times, I had too many other things to do that day. I went to bed that night with the thought in my head that people on their deathbed tend to regret the things they DON’T DO in life, rather than the things they DO. I don’t know the statistics on this, I don’t know if it’s anecdotal or cliché, but I know I couldn’t risk finding out. There are already opportunities in my life I never acted upon that I regret not doing. I know my life wouldn’t look the same if I had done everything I wanted to; my life is where it is now due as much to my choices, as lack of them.

So came home from work the next day and looked up flights to London. It was then I found one for $427 to Dublin. I usually spend over half that amount just to see my family one province over. This seemed too good to pass up. I text my friend who was thinking of travelling with me: She didn’t respond. I tried to sign into the Air Canada website using my Aeroplan number. It wasn’t working. It was a sign: I shouldn’t go. I have no idea how expensive Ireland is once I get there. I shouldn’t spend the money.

I had already planned to meet someone for a movie later that night, and the flight sale ended at 9pm, I had to decide in the next half hour. I thought: “I just shouldn’t bother doing something I’m not sure of”. My stress level was high, but I couldn’t stop thinking that I’d regret it if I didn’t. I called my friend on the way to the theatre, she couldn’t be sure of the dates she was free, but encouraged me to travel alone. I messaged my sister: She seemed supporting of me going. It was a sign. I had to do it.

I found the flight I wanted while on the Skytrain to the movie and I was literally filling out my credit card information in the theatre while the annoyed ads were telling me to put my phone away before the previews started. I was freaking out a little inside. Am I really doing this?!? I just knew I had to. I have to own my happiness. Take opportunity’s when they come. There is never going to be a perfect time or a right time to do anything. I just knew I had to make it happen.

My first solo trip, to a place I have dreamed about for years. Ireland here I come! Yay for spontaneity!

P.S. If you’ve even been to Ireland I would love your tips for where to go and what to see! Leave them in the comments below or connect with me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

6 Comment

  1. Sanne says: Reply

    That’s awesome! Spontaneous trips are often the most fun and I’m sure you will enjoy your first solo trip and learn a lot from it. Have a great time and I can’t wait to read about your experiences!

    1. Rachel Simmet says: Reply

      Thanks Sanne I am looking forward to it!

  2. I love this! I’m going to live vicariously through you. I just watched Leap Year and that is exactly where I would have picked up and gone! Have a great time and report back!! 😀

    1. Rachel Simmet says: Reply

      Thanks Sarah! Ireland was always at the top of my “places to go” list as a teenager. Now it’s finally happening!

  3. Carlie says: Reply

    Congrats! Ireland is really amazing! I just went for the first time in March and loved it. You should definitely bring warm, water-resistant clothing. Look into the Leap Pass for public transportation (only available in certain locations). A quick day trip worth taking (on the subway) is Howth, a local coastal town. Dublin is smaller than you might think, so take your time exploring if you don’t plan to leave the city.

    1. Rachel Simmet says: Reply

      Thanks for the tips Carlie! I definitely plan on travelling around the country and head to Northern Ireland as well but haven’t decided how many nights I’m going to spend where yet.

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