By : Cher
It has been a month since our girls’ trip and I am still on cloud nine. I can still smell the salt from the ocean, feel the cool breeze blowing through my hair and the taste of sweet rum on my lips. Out of all my years living, my girls and I’s thirty-fine birthday celebration is on my top five of best trip experiences ever. However, the beginning planning stage to get to our destination wasn’t the best experience.
This past July, my girlfriends, who I have been friends with since college and graduate school, wanted to celebrate our 35th year of life in a major way. For months we had been planning this trip. Our first idea was to go to Bali! Bali looked exquisite. The photos can really sell you on wanting to travel there. However, it was great that we didn’t choose that destination. With all the volcanoes erupting and my bank account looking at me crazy, we decided to choose another location.
Have you ever seen the meme, where there are 10 girlfriends six months before a trip, five girlfriends three months before, three girlfriends one month before and then on the actual trip it has one woman going…the lone ranger going on the trip? Well, this trip was starting to turn out exactly like that meme. Everyone was excited to go but couldn’t think of the other places they wanted to visit and didn’t want to jump in to help do research. By this time, it was getting close to our deadline when we should have been booking a hotel. We had been talking about this since August 2017 and in February 2018 we had still not picked a location. As someone who was determined to make it happen, I became frustrated and started to shut down. Something that I wanted to be fun for all of us to celebrate was starting to become a hassle. I wonder why this happens?
I figured since I felt like I was the only person throwing ideas and locations out there it would only be myself going. So, I shut down our group chat and started researching on my own. I was determined to have this trip. Besides Mexico and Puerto Rico, I had never been out of the country that wasn’t associated with the United States. I wanted this year to be my year, because honestly, I don’t know if I will ever travel and go to all the places that I would like to go. Single mom with two kids… some things do not work out in your favor. So, with that in my mind, I started doing my research. The best thing happened, two of my girlfriends were like “Heck, we are going! Don’t think we are not.” And from there our trip was formed. We narrowed down a place in 4 days and searched for the best hotels. After reading reviews on TripAdvisors, Travel USA and our booking site Bookit, I started to become a little nervous, but my girls were there to keep me focused.
We decided to move forward with Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Only one of us had been there before and she went a while ago while attending college. We booked our shuttle service and even our excursion through Bookit. ***Side note: We did wait until we arrived at the resort to check out all the companies who provided excursions before making our purchase, which I would highly recommend doing. It helped save some money and I am all about saving money! Something, I wanted to do while we were there was a spa day. We contemplated on booking it beforehand and I am glad we didn’t. If we booked our appointments in advance, it would’ve cost more than $300 for a massage and facial. At the resort they were promoting their spa and for $110 we received an exfoliation, a massage, and facial. Not bad right?! I think, and I believe my girls would agree, that the best thing about the resort besides the drinks, was the butler service. We selected TRS Turquesa and they provided a butler to assist with booking excursions, events, making reservations and whatever you needed to make your stay a little more easier and enjoyable.
With everything that was planned and executed, we had a such an enjoyable time in Punta Cana. We enjoyed out time so much we are already planning for 2019! Too bad the other ladies didn’t partake on this trip. For 2019, We are looking at another location but the same company. I would love to receive tips and advice on planning for trips, best way to find airfare, resorts, etc. Drop some knowledge below!
As Always, Love Life and Full of Smiles!