Are you looking for retreat options?
Presumably, you have been overwhelmed by all the possible options by now. You will have been faced with multiple results from your google searching, targeted paid advertisements on Instagram, Facebook and other social media and/or comments and blogs from those you follow about the “one” retreat you must do. It is mind-boggling.
(Do not have time to read? Scroll down to the end of the post to see a quick summary).
The good news is that the number of options is only increasing! The landscape of this offering is also likely to change over time. According to Cheryl Potter (Partner and Co-Head of Consumer @Permira) by 2029 we will witness a huge shift from consumerism to experiences driven by environment and wellness. This is driven by cautious generation Z and millennials.
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As with anything in life the more options you have the more difficult it will be to make a retreat decision… yoga, meditation, pilates, fitness, hiking, surfing, energy healing, weight loss, religious, vegan, vegetarian, Bali, Costa Rica, luxury resort… the list is endless.
This is a quick guide to help you effectively choose a wellness holiday whatever your focus may be.
This is absolutely key. The location will largely be determined by your total budget and the time of year you wish to travel given considerations such as the weather.
For example, if you planning on visiting destinations such as Vietnam, Indonesia or Thailand make sure that they are not affected by monsoon seasons. The same would apply if you are considering certain states in the USA (for instance, Florida), or the Caribbean islands or Mexico – your experience here may be interrupted by hurricane seasons.
Your location will also determine if and when you need to start considering pre-travel essentials such as any necessary vaccinations or visas. If you’re going short-haul it may even impact how much luggage you can take or the type of accessory you need (e.g. a backpack or suitcase).
On a more localized geographical scale – be sure to do your own research and check out the exact location of your retreat on a map. You want to ensure that you adequately plan your transfers, any excursions, other activities and, most importantly, that your chosen destination is not bordering any eye saws or busy highways. This could definitely interrupt a relaxing yoga or meditation retreat!
We are all different and you should ensure that the retreat is fulsome and meets each of your wellbeing needs. Consider each of the following criteria as a helpful guide:
- Type of activity: wellness, yoga, meditation, fitness, CrossFit, HIIT training, Pilates, hiking, etc.
- Dietary requirements: vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, organic meals.
- Particular focus: fasting, rejuvenation, religious link.
- Personal requirements and demographics of other participants: LGBT, female only, singles, couples, elderly.
All we are trying to say, you do not have to compromise. There is everything for everyone.
Consider how long you want to go for as this may guide your choice of destination and type of retreat. We have found that retreats can vary in length, for example, they range from a weekend to a couple of months.
We would recommend, if this is your first time, starting with something shorter in duration to ensure that the activity or focus is actually for you. You can always go again for longer.
A number of retreats are capped in size to ensure that the groups are small and intimate (8-10 people). However, others can easily be larger.
Depending on what you are looking for and your personal preference ensure that you check the number of other participants and the format and size of group activities.
5. What’s included in the price
You should always check what is and is not included and estimate other costs.
Generally, food (breakfast and dinner) and accommodation are covered. However, this is not always the case.
You should try to split this between necessary costs and additional treats. Once necessary item to budget for are transfers to and from the airport. These can be expensive so it may be that you can arrange to share these with other guests.
Additional treats could include spa treatments, fitness classes, cooking classes and so on.
Different organisers may also package these additional differently so keep a lookout for special offers.
6. Qualifications and the experience of the style teachers
It is not easy to leave in the middle of a retreat so please do your research about who you’ll be working with whilst away. You want to ensure as best as you can they have the right experience and style to suit your needs.
Tips for doing this include reading the biography of the teacher, googling them for any hits, and reviewing their Facebook/ Instagram pages. This is essential so you have a good idea of the skills that they have and so that you can gauge their approach more holistically.
You should always read reviews but be mindful and make certain that you read a few to get a true, accurate and fair view.
7. Payment terms, plans and cancellation terms
Check the terms of payment. You should know when payment is due, including any deposits, and in which form. You may also look out for payment plans.
Also, check the cancellation policy, if there is one. If not, you may wish to consider insurance.
Do not be afraid to ask organisers for further information and guidance.
We hope that this gives you some initial guidance on what to consider when looking for a retreat.
And just to summarize:
How to choose the retreat?
- Choose wisely your location
Make sure that the location of the retreat will not be affected by things like “rain season” when you travel there. Also, check how far it is from the airport/ beach/ busy roads/ city.
- Look at the type of retreat
There are endless variations of retreats out there. You do not have to settle for what is not really working for you activities-wise/ diet-wise/ or group of people-wise.
- Duration of the retreat
It can be a weekend-long, week-long, or even a month or more. All depends on your availability and budget. Normally, the longer the retreat the cheaper it is on per night basis.
- Asses the size of the retreat group
Some retreats can be very intimates (a few people) and some retreats cane huge (50+ people). Both sides of the spectrum have upsides and downsides.
- Understand what’s included in the price you pay
Read carefully the terms and conditions of your booking. See what exactly is included in your price. You do not want to realise at the airport that there is no shuttle provided and you have to organise your own transport to the retreat venue.
- Research qualification and the experience of the retreat teachers
Retreats are not cheap and you have to do your own research on who is going to teach you during the retreat. Check their website, social media, ask questions., request feedback.
- Read terms and conditions
Sometimes retreats get cancelled if the host does not have enough people to cover the cost of the retreat. You might also decide to cancel the last minute. Check the terms and conditions of your booking so there are no surprises later.
Looking for retreat options for Easter break 2020? Have a look at this hand-picked list of awesome retreats worldwide.
Our website can help you with some of these points. We are soon going to be the biggest comparison website for retreats.
Go to the home page and filter retreats by dates, duration, retreat type, price, early bird offer, etc.
We simply help you to filter the results down and if you like what you see and you want to learn more, just follow the link on the retreat page to the website of the organizer.
But if you haven’t found what you are looking for, click on Create Alert. We will receive the filters you used and let you know once we have new retreats which meet your search criteria. We add them every day.
If you know someone who is organizing any type of retreats and getaways, we would really appreciate if you could share the link to our website with them. They can easily add their retreat listing to our website via Add Listing.
Interested to learn more about our online market place for retreats? Have a look here!