For those who work hard the year round, the annual vacation is a much-needed break from routine life. Some people spend an entire year looking forward to their yearly trip and diligently put aside some money every month for the same. Yet others that are not long-term planners manage to arrange money last-minute and prefer to enjoy their time out and worry about finances when they return.
If you’re the type of vacationer who’d rather have the peace of mind that comes with financial planning, here are five tips that will help you save money for a dream vacation solo or with friends or family.
Set up a compulsory savings travel fund
If traveling is a priority in your life, you will always find ways to save money for your next trip. One effective way that people who love to travel save money year round is by opening a savings account where a specified sum is automatically transferred each month from their checking account. Yet others use technology to help them save for their next trip. Did you know that there are apps out there that will auto-deduct money from your checking account and put it in a travel fund?
Compulsory deductions are a great way to save small amounts without even realizing that you’re doing it. Remember, even a dollar saved every day amounts to a saving of $365 each year. So don’t worry about starting small—any saving is good if it can fund a part of your dream adventure.
Borrow travel gear rather than buying everything you’ll need
Indeed you’d love to have the fancy gear needed for a long-awaited camping trip, but should you really be spending hundreds of dollars on items that you may not use again for a long time to come?
Instead, reach out to friends and family and see what items you can borrow and you’ll save yourself a significant amount that you can use to enjoy your trip instead. When shopping for a vacation, keep your focus on the essential items and buy those at end-of-season bargain sales.
Explore advance hotel and travel bookings
Advance bookings cost less but are often nonrefundable, so it would be wise to explore several options before making a hotel reservation or booking flight tickets. You can make significant savings by booking a few months ahead of your trip; however, always look for an option that allows free cancellation or cancellation for a small fee just in case you aren’t able to make the trip.
The money you save by planning your trip well can be used to pay for special experiences while you’re there.
Sacrifice a few indulgences through the year
Your dream vacation plan is finally taking shape and you know you need to start saving now to be able to make advance bookings and take benefit of low prices. When you have your eyes set on a luxury trip, you need to be willing to make some sacrifices and adjustments in your current lifestyle and put some money aside each month as vacation fund.
Think of some lifestyle expenses you can give up. For instance, if you have a gym membership but have not been going for more than once a week, would you rather cancel it and take up jogging instead? How often do you order out in a week? Cut it down to half?
There is no harm in making some compromises in your everyday life if the reward is as superb as taking that Caribbean cruise you’ve always dreamed of as your ideal holiday.
Take out a short-term cash loan
Even with diligent planning, it’s possible to fall short of cash right before your trip. There are various ways to avail fast cash to get out of a cash crunch in such a situation. You can borrow from a relative, use your credit card to make essential purchases, or take out a short-term loan, such as a payday loan, which is required to be paid back as soon as your next salary arrives. The last option gives you freedom from long-term debt as there is a deadline to repay the loan; in fact, the sum is auto-debited to your salary account on the due date.
You can avail a payday loan by filing a simple form online on the lender’s website—however, be sure to check the fees or interest you’ll need to pay and also consider if you’ll be able to repay the sum right after returning from your trip.