Statistics show that the average domestic one-week vacation costs around $1,500 for one person. The cost goes up for a couple or family and if you decide to travel internationally instead domestically. Do you have a location that you have always wanted to visit? Are you worried that it is out of your price range to stay there for a week? Keep reading to learn about ways to save money for that dream vacation and make the unforgettable memories you have been dreaming about.
In order to save for a vacation, you have to know what you are saving for. Planning the vacation far in advance can help with this. There are many ways to start the planning process, of course. You can start with the location that you would like to visit. After that, choosing when to go–the timing of your trip–is the next step.
Some people base it on the weather, while others try to visit during out-of-season times to avoid the abundance of tourists and secure cheaper rates on airfare and lodging. Once you have determined when and where you would like to go, you can start estimating the cost of lodging, airfare, car rental, food, activities, and anything else you plan to do during that time.
Start Operating on a Budget
Once you have an estimate of the amount of money you will need to pay for the vacation, you can start breaking down how you will save for it. For example, if the vacation is six months away, you can figure out the amount that you need to save weekly or monthly. From there, you can incorporate this number into a budget that you must stick to in order to save.
Designing a budget will prevent you from excess spending in areas that are not helping you save money. Think of it as a guide for you and your finances.
How often do you really use your Netflix subscription? Do you have to pay a premium or can you deal with ads for a few months?
Subscriptions are sneaky because they automatically deduct from your credit card each month. It is easy to forget that you pay several dollars a month for all of these services. Cutting back can help you save because you will be spending less per month without those subscriptions.
Create a Vacation Savings
You likely already have a savings account or two, but opening one specific for vacations can help fund all of your future excursions. Opening a Mission Fed credit union savings account could be the perfect solution. Instead of keeping cash in a coin jar, you can set aside a portion of your paycheck or transfer funds from your other accounts to this account to save. Since it is at the bank, it will be easier to save than grabbing cash from the jar when you need it. This could be a long term solution for setting aside money for leisure travel and activities for years to come.
Pay Off Debt
The thing that is holding you back from your dream vacation could be the outstanding debt that you still have. It is hard to spend a few thousand dollars on a vacation when you know that the money could be better used toward your debt. Working to pay this debt off and then going on vacation could be a great reward for your efforts.
Scale Back Spending
How many times per week do you order takeout? Are there grocery impulse buys that you could go without? Where do you unexpectedly spend money in a given week or month?
The key to saving is to spend less. While you still need to take care of the essential living expenses in your life, some of your discretionary income can be used toward saving for vacation. This won’t be the easiest part of your saving efforts but it can make a huge difference when you are able to redirect those funds to be used in a more meaningful way.
Start a Side Hustle
Picking up a part time or seasonal job to save for vacation could be the boost that you needed to save. Even working a few extra hours a week can make a huge difference when your extra income is going toward your savings efforts for vacation. There are many seasonal jobs that look for temporary help and you could be a fit for one of those positions. If you really enjoy the job, it could become a way to save up for other purchases in the future and not take away from your regular income.
Decluttering is good for your living space and can also make you some money. It is likely that you can think of many things around your home that you no longer use. Listing these items for sale online or hosting a sale can help you get the items out of your house and make extra money in the process. This requires minimal effort since you already have the items in your home.
You may be surprised by how many things in your home you could sell and earn cash from. Start taking inventory of items that you no longer use and see what you could sell them for.
Look For Deals
Do your research. Don’t book the first flight you see or the first hotel that pops up. Search for deals on travel and find ways to lower those expenses throughout your trip. Doing so can help the trip as a whole cost less, meaning less that you have to save too. Check out this guide if you are looking for more budget-friendly tips for your vacation.
Stop Dreaming and Start Planning Today
Now that you have read more about the ways to save up for your dream vacation, you can put these tips into action today. Saving money takes discipline and commitment but the reward will be the vacation at the end of it. Start planning the details today!