Jack McCann gives us the ever-important wisdom of the do's and do nots of Leaving Cert. holidays

Leaving Cert. holidays are one of the best and most enjoyable things that anybody can have the opportunity to do. However they can go wrong if you don’t take the following precautions:

Travelling companions

It is very important that you choose a group of people who you actually want to go on holidays with. Don’t just go on holiday with half the year, just because everybody else did. Those holidays always seem to have the most stories. However, they are not always the stories you want to hear. You may also end up wanting to kill half the group by the end of the holiday, due to the many personality types that end up being in such a big group.

I went in a group of only four, some may say there won’t be much banter in such a small group, but my L.C. holiday was one of the best I have ever been on. By going in small groups it also meant I knew I could trust the lads I went with as I knew them very well.

Planning who you go home with

This isn’t the first thing that will have come straight into some people’s minds. From the group you went with make sure you know who has the keys for the night and who you have paired off as your companion for the walk or taxi home at the end of the night. Believe me, it is well worth the 30 seconds it takes to organise, one or two of the nights will become chaotic at points.

Second point for this is stick with the plan, don’t change your companion or leave early on the night. This could leave your walking companion not knowing that they’ll end up walking home by themselves, as their planned walking companion has already left early. Arriving back at the apartment in the wee hours to find the companion has yet to return home due to interesting circumstances, leaving his companion to wait outside for an hour as he had no key. It was early enough that early mornings joggers appeared before the companion arrived. Don’t be that friend.

Location, Location, Location.

Pick an apartment, hotel or wherever you plan on staying that is close to where the nightlife is located. This will save you money energy and time. If you find lodging which fits the bill, i.e. has a pool, is cheap and looks nice (the order is important here), Google it. Find out where it is exactly. Don’t end up staying in a place that is an hour’s walk away or so from all the clubs. You can just take a taxi, but that is a waste of valuable spending money. Having to walk for over half an hour also helps to eradicate the majority of any hangover the next morning.

I placed ‘pool’ at the top of the accommodation requirements as it is vitally important, from my experience. A twenty minute lounge in the pool first thing in the morning, does you the world of good, no matter how much absinthe you have had the night before.

Lastly, make sure you locate your local supermarket or shops ASAP. You don’t want to have heave loads of booze and food around for even 10 minutes. It just isn’t fun. If you are lucky enough to come across an Iceland supermarket, use it; you’ve hit the jackpot. Their 1 or 2 euro meals will come in handy, as the week wares on. Trust me.

Enjoy yourself

Make the most of the week you go away for, you won’t have many of them. They are unforgettable weeks. Also having sat the most strenuous exams of your life these last few weeks, you’ve earned it.