When was the last time you went on a vacation that wasn’t a staycation? A vacation should involve traveling to a destination where you can relax in comfort and style, with cocktail in hand and your toes in the sand.
Oftentimes, finances can stand in the way of planning a vacation. All you need is some careful planning and saving, and you could soon be on your way to Bali or Cabo. Discover five great ways to help fund your next vacation.
Set a Budget for Your Travels
Image via Flickr by KCCChicago
Before you start saving, you need to do some thorough research to figure out how much your trip will cost. Begin by figuring out your budget. How much will your airline tickets cost? What will you spend on accommodations and transportation at your destination? What do you expect you’ll pay for food?
Fortunately, the internet is full of good travel information, and you can easily check consumers reviews and pricing for almost every destination. Don’t forget to include shopping and tips into your vacation budget.
Start Saving for Your Vacation
Once you’ve determined your overall budget, figure out which date works best, and how much money you must put away each pay period. For example, if you want to leave for your vacation in six months, and the cost will be around $3,000, then you need to save $500 per month. If you get paid twice a month, you should find a way to save $250 per pay period.
Start a Side Job
If saving a chunk of your paycheck each period is difficult, you might have to find a way to earn additional cash.
You can find a variety of side job opportunities if you’re willing to be flexible and creative. For example, you could drive for Uber, babysit for a neighbor, or sell some of the items in your garage through internet sites such as eBay or Craigslist. You could also make money as an Amway independent business owner. As the world’s top direct-selling company, Amway provides opportunities for people to earn extra income by selling beauty, nutrition, and home products.
Choose a Savings Plan
Whatever you do, don’t stash your vacation savings in a box under the bed. You can start earning some interest on your funds by shopping for a savings plan that is right for you.
The savings plan you choose may depend on how long you have to wait before you go on vacation. If you think your vacation is less than a year away, use a regular savings account rather than an investment account to avoid penalties, fees, and market fluctuations. When you decide what type of savings plan or investments you need, set up an automatic transfer from your paycheck deposit or checking account directly into your savings account.
Cut Back on Your Expenses
Cutting back on expenses is a surefire way to save more money. Take a look at your monthly household spending budget and watch for places you can cut back. Think about areas such as taking public transpiration to work instead of driving your own car. Can you pack a lunch instead of eating out? How much do you spend on entertainment? Perhaps you can cut back on these items as well. Perhaps you can find a cheaper cable television provider or less expensive car insurance. Find a way to reduce your utility expenses.
Determining ways to fund your next vacation can be a great bonding experience for your family. If the plan is to take the kids along with you, involve them in the savings process to get them excited about the vacation and teach them how to set goals and achieve them. Pat yourselves on the back as you make progress. You may want to make a large chart and display it somewhere in your home where everyone can see it. Before long, you’ll be packing your bags and heading out to make your dreams a reality.