Spring Break - Markiza
Many college students and 20-somethings share similar images when they think of spring break. I mean, we did grow up watching MTV Spring Break celebrations – complete with concerts on the beach, whipped cream bikinis and Jerry Springer. But many of us also learned that’s not always what spring break is about. (And for those of us who didn’t, I’m sure you’re still trying to remember last year’s trip.)
“That image of people lying on the beach is just so tame,” says Philip Wang, Associate Professor of Recreation, Park and Tourism Management at Kent State University. “I think a lot of students are more active than that. They want to see sites, they want to experience culture – not just drink.”
That’s the case for Carly Whiteleather, a University of Akron junior who’s headed to New York City for her spring break. “We’re going to visit more than 10 museums for a class trip,” she says. “It’s a great opportunity for Akron U art students. You get to see and experience a lot of the art world for a reasonable amount of money.”
Although Danielle Lescsak, a fifth-year senior at KSU, isn’t going on a school-related trip, she said she’ll be sharing a similar experience when she goes to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. “We’ll be visiting the local museums, aquariums, light houses, the beach, parks and places like that,” she says.
Amanda Schmunk, a sophomore at Kent State University, is also going to North Carolina, but she’ll be partaking in the more leisurely spring break. “I’m just planning on lying on the beach, sun up until sun down with a Bud Light in my hand,” she says.
Junior Ross Matteson, a student at the University of Akron, has similar aspirations. “I’m going with a few good buddies of mine on a road trip down south,” he says. “Nowhere specific – we just wanna drive down to New Orleans then down to Florida.
Ross says he hopes his trip will include “lots and lots” of drinking and meeting some new friends along the way. “I just can’t wait to get out of Ohio and see grass again,” he says.
This year’s hot spots
So where do people go when they get sick of Ohio? Philip expects the Bahamas to be a popular destination for years to come. “The area is exotic enough; it’s outside of the United States for people who want to get out of the country, but it still has that near-country concept on top of being reasonably priced.”
He also had a few spots to offer domestically. “Texas and Florida have been popular for decades,” Philip says, adding that Florida’s Panama City will be especially popular this year because it will serve as the hosting site of MTV’s spring break festivities.
Planning your spring break trip
When should you start planning your trip? “If you’re talking about this year, this is the time,” Philip says.
He recommends planning even a year in advance but realizes that a lot of people wait until the last minute. He said people who make last-minute plans may be tempted to use the Web, but he advises going through a travel agency.
“Quality is difficult to guarantee online; the better way is to go through a valuable travel agent,” he says. “They have knowledge about, not only destinations but about different services and the industry as the whole. Having a good travel agent acting on your behalf saves a lot of headaches.”
He adds, however, that if you’re going to make your plans online, you should still use common sense to avoid getting scammed. “A good rule of thumb is if the deal is too good to be true, it usually is too good to be true.”