As spring break winds down and I begin my frantic day-before-the-flight packing, I look at my phone and see the annual overdose of spring break pictures from every tropical place you can imagine. Spring Break is all part of the college experience, a time when college students become enamored with the idea of sunshine, parties, and large amounts of distance from their families. This week students took off to relax on beaches along Florida, Mexico, and various other islands. According to DoSomething.com, more than 1.5 million college students will jet off to these locations and will spend a total of over 1 BILLION dollars in the process.
Now, if you’re like me, at the beginning of break you became jealous of these people who can look out their windows and see nothing but miles of shoreline. However, as break progressed, I realized that going home is just as good as going to one of these places. Although you may not get the vitamin D that all of us are in need of in the middle of one of the most frigid months of March on record (thanks, global frost), going home can provide many benefits that these locations can’t.
The main perk of going home is that (almost) everything is free. The room and board, transportation and laundry service come free with going home. Oh, did I mention the dining options? Incredible. Going home, even working while you are home, can help you save money for school, or for a trip in the summer or for a trip your senior year. According to BillShrink.com, the average student who goes away for spring break spends $1,100 throughout the course of the break. With that money you can buy a new laptop, a new snowboard and gear (for the winter lovers), or 1,000 McDonalds cheeseburgers, with $100 left over for an ER visit. I would rather spend less money, go to a place that I know and am familiar with and in the process, save money.
I know that most Loyola students complain about Spring Break being a week earlier than most other schools. While yes, it does stink that most of your friends are away at school while you’re home, it doesn’t mean that you can’t visit them. If you have friends at other schools close by, try and see if you can connect with them. It’s a win-win situation: you get to go see your friend while they get to stay in the comfort of their own school. Plus, it makes them feel less pressured to entertain you every hour of the time you are there. Even if you don’t have the greatest time there, you have the ability to leave any time you want.
Finally, Spring Break can be used as a time for relaxation. Most of us probably just got through the most stressful two weeks of our lives (thanks, snow days) and the number one thing that we probably need to do is just relax. What better way to relax then plopping down on your old, familiar bed? Best part? NO ALARMS NEED TO BE SET (you’ll get up when your body says you are ready to get up). While I would like to be sprawled out on a towel on a beach in Cabo, I think my bed at home serves as a valiant second place. Wherever you went, I hope your spring break was full of memories that won’t soon be forgotten because soon enough, final exams will be coming up.