One of the best loved times for kids, teens, and college students is Christmas break. Frequently called "winter break," this is a time off from school that begins anywhere from about December 15 and lasts until around January 15, depending on your school's policy. Most elementary and high school students receive about two weeks off, while college students typically get around three to four weeks off. Some adults in the workplace are even lucky enough to get a week off around the Christmas holidays.
No matter what your situation is, try to make the best of your time off school and work.
Christmas Break Trips
A favorite pastime for families, young couples, and groups of college students is to travel during Christmas break. Depending on the length of time available, this can be a full week or just a quick weekend getaway. Many times, these trips are a Christmas present to the whole family, which was saved for over the years. From a family cruise to a Christmas family vacation in New Mexico, winter break can be a time filled with fun and memories.
A great place to take kids over Christmas is Walt Disney World or Disneyland. With all of the holiday festivities (special parades, activities, and foods), along with their normal offerings, it is the perfect treat for the family that has never been to the adventure park.
Traveling to a place with opposite temperatures is a common occurrence. If you are from a warm location, you may want to whisk your family away over the Christmas holidays to a ski resort. Bunny trails are available for kids, and resorts often have activities planned around the holidays. Or, if you come from a chilly northern area, visit the beach on one of the coasts to warm your family's toes.
For a quick weekend getaway, consider traveling to a nearby city and spending a night or two in a nice downtown hotel. Catch a theatre show such as "A Christmas Carol" and treat your family to a meal out on the town.
College-age couples and those in the workforce lucky enough to get a winter break will enjoy spending quality time together over the holidays at romantic spots. Visiting Italy or France is a great idea for those who have a desire to go overseas.
If you do not have the money to spend on overseas airfare, there are plenty of options in the United States. Try staying at a bed and breakfast, or book a weekend spa vacation for two.
Traveling as a student can be expensive. With all those bills, you do not want to blow all your hard-earned money on travel over break. Therefore, plan for a shorter vacation and save your money early. A great place to visit on a budget is Las Vegas. With many free shows at the hotels (volcano at the Mirage, water show at the Bellagio, and pirates outside Treasure Island), you can be sure to find lots of activities to occupy your time. Gambling is optional; if you want to do a little, make sure you stick to an amount you set beforehand.
Sometimes airlines and hotel chains offer student discounts. Be sure to check into different options to see where you can get the best deal.
Working Over Christmas Break
Another activity of many students, teachers, and other professionals is to work over Christmas break. College and high school students frequently use this time to increase their working hours and their bank accounts. Teachers plan for their next semester, and others who need cash pick up odd jobs during their break.
Some popular jobs over Christmas break include:
- Retail store positions
- Shoveling snow on sidewalks
- Christmas present wrapping
- Cleaning houses
Extra work over Christmas break can help insure that your bills are paid in the upcoming year. It also keeps youth (and some easily bored adults) busy during that long break.
Learning During Break
Christmas break is a great time to take that extra class or two you have been meaning to get under your belt. Community colleges offer fun classes, like wreath making and cake decorating. You could even take a snowmobiling course!
Sometimes colleges offer more academic classes that can count for credit. This is something many students opt to participate in. These classes typically run for three weeks and have an intense workload due to the shorter class. Frequently, online courses can be taken and completed during winter break.
Whatever you choose to do over your Christmas break, make sure you make the most of your time. You will not have this chance again for another year.