Take Time to Unplug: Vacation Destinations to Stay Off the Grid

It’s currently 88 degrees and sunny outside; and what am I doing? I am looking back and forth from my phone and my computer screen, inside, covered in a blanket because the air conditioning in my house is set to sub-arctic levels.  I need a vacation… Not just any vacation; a vacation from technology.  A trip where I can disconnect from the distractions of the internet and work, where I can focus on relaxing.


How much time do you spend on your smartphone? Three hours a day? Four hours? More? According to a British psychological study whatever you estimate the time may be, you should double it. Checking our phones has become such a part of our daily routine that it’s ingrained in us. We don’t even realize we are doing it. We’re spending a lot of our day on Facebook or Instagram, too. In 2014 the average person spent 40 minutes per day on the social media sites. In 2016 it is now an average of 50 minutes. We take our phones to the bathroom; and have created new terms like Phantom Vibration Syndrome, and smartphone pinky. We are never without technology.

Believe it or not there are still some places cell phone reception and wifi are not accessible or reliable. If you are looking to take a vacation from technology, here are some great places to unwind where you won’t be sucked into your phone or computer.

The Wilds

My first thought on where to go to escape technology would be the woods camping. You can’t charge your phone when you’re living in a tent. But, roughing it in the woods isn’t my idea of relaxing. However, these locations could definitely provide the relief you need.

Emerald Lake Lodge, Canada : Enjoy the beautiful Canadian landscape in one of their cozy lodge rooms. Snuggle up to a fire in your in-suite fireplace or take in the views of the Rockies from your balcony. No interruptions from cell phones here since there is no reception at the lodge, and only wifi in the main lodge building.

Ultima Thule Lodge, Alaska : Don’t have a passport? Why not head to the great white north and this Alaskan getaway. The cabins only host a limited amount of guests at a time, and have their own onsite organic garden. They also have gourmet meals made with fresh-sourced salmon and game, stunning views, and comfortable cabins. You can only reach the resort by plane so it’s not hard to believe there is no cell service here.

The Beach

Still don’t think that the woods are the best place to relax or don’t think you could handle the cold of Alaska? There are still options. If you are a beach bum like I am, here are several places you can sun yourself and read a book or two in peace.

Campo Cortez Ecolodge, Mexico : If you really want to get off the grid this is the place. As an ecolodge, the cabins may be small but all modern amenities are available. Solar and wind powered electricity provide the ability to charge up some of your devices like a camera; something you will definitely want so you can capture the whales in the Baja area. No cell reception or TVs are in the cabins here though; so you can enjoy watching and learning about all the nature around you.

Little Palm Island, Florida : Now this is what I think of when escaping from reality for a bit. Beautiful beaches, warm sun, swimming with dolphins… Oh, and no television, phones, or guest under 16 (sorry if you were looking for a family vacation). I’m ready to pack my bags and pull a lounge chair up on the beach right now!

Don’t think you can go cold turkey from technology or don’t have time/money allotted for vacation right now?

Try taking baby steps and give yourself mini vacations each day. Carve out time every day where you put away everything, turn it all off, and read a book, have a nice dinner, or talk! If you sleep with your phone on your nightstand, move it out to another room and don’t touch it until morning. Whatever you do give yourself time to rest without distractions.

How to Unplug When You’re on Vacation

“A vacation should be just long enough for the boss to miss you, and not long enough for him to discover how well he can get along without you.”

Do you have a vacation or even a staycation planned this summer? Do you plan to bring your work phone, tablet or laptop along with you? Take note of the quote above and take a break from your work as well! Here are some steps you can take to “unplug” while you’re on vacation this year.

cell-1344985_960_720Set Expectations

Discuss with your coworkers the fact that you will not be taking your work with you on your trip. Decide who will make decisions on pressing matters for you. This will help alleviate any anxiety you may have about leaving your work, as well as, save you some time when you return. If necessary, let them know where they can reach you in a true emergency.

Pick your Tech
Will you totally unplug from technology for the week? Or, will you still use your personal devices to connect with friends and family you might not have seen in a while? Maybe you can’t live without those vacation selfies! Decide what level of technology you will be using for the week. By making this decision before your trip you will be able to better stick with your unplugged lifestyle for the week.


Turn off Reminders and Notifications
Just like you’ll be turning off your wake up alarms during a relaxing vacation, turn off other notifications. This includes; Facebook, Twitter, E-mail and maybe even your text message and phone call alerts. This will help you fight the urge to check your phone each time it makes a noise or you hear a vibration.

Finally, if you can get away with it completely leave your devices at home or plan a trip outside of cell service and WiFi. Disconnecting allows you to reset and refresh your outlook, body and mind. You’ll go back to work more focused!

Do you completely go off the grid while on a vacation away from the office? Or do you still tend to do some work here and there?