Budget Friendly Vacation Tips
When it comes to vacations, it can be easy for them to add up. What might begin as a budget friendly trip can turn into your spending much more than you intended. This is why it’s crucial to plan ahead for vacations. Here are a few tips and tricks that can ensure you don’t break the bank on your next trip.
Create a Budget
Before you even think of planning a vacation, you need to come up with a budget. The first step in creating a budget is seeing how much money you have left over after all your expenses are paid. This is money you can use for your vacation. This does not mean you have to use it all, it is just a good place to start.
Another way to know how much to budget is to see what you might have spent on other vacations. This can be helpful if you are going to the same or a similar location. If you feel comfortable, you might be able to ask someone else who has been to the destination as well for their input. This can give you an idea of the general cost of the vacation.
The next part of the budget is deciding what you want to spend your money on. Some people might want to spend their money on food, while others value accommodations or excursions more. To properly budget, you have to decide what is most important to you, and save in other categories.
Pay Up Front
When you have your budget, a good trick is to pay up front for things that you can. This can help you from being shocked and overwhelmed later. This also can ensure that you aren’t racking up any late fees from not paying on time.
Create an Itinerary
Creating an itinerary can ensure that you are staying on budget when you are on vacation. It’s so easy to spend extra money when you don’t have a plan. With an itinerary, you are able to make sure you aren’t overspending. Along with this, you are also able to budget for all your expenses, because the itinerary will show you exactly what you will be paying for.
When creating an itinerary, researching free things to do in the area is a great money saving tip. Finding things like parks or the local library can save you a lot of money on expensive excursions.
Make a Meal Plan
Making a plan for what to eat can help you plan your budget accordingly. Doing this, you are able to decide when and where you are going to eat out. This also helps you see what you might need to make reservations for. Going to the grocery store and making some meals can also save you money.
Another tip is to bring your own snacks. This can save you a lot of money from having to buy snacks when you are in a pinch. Airports and resorts can charge you ridiculous prices for snacks. Rather than having to pay for those when you are starving, you can bring your own and save money. By not spending as much on snacks, you can save more money for nicer meals.
Stay with Friends & Family
This tip is rather self explanatory. If you are lucky enough to know people who live in a fun vacation destination, it can be beneficial to stay with them. This way you are saving money on accommodations and being able to spend it on other aspects of the vacation. You can offer to pay for groceries or take them out to dinner while you are staying with them. In the end, this is still much cheaper than paying for a hotel or airbnb.
Stay Close to Home
Another tip is to vacation close to home. You don’t have to travel far to have a good vacation. You can check out some places near you that you haven’t been to before.
Roadtripping is another way that you can save a lot of money when it comes to vacations. This is much cheaper than paying for airfare if you don’t mind a long drive. This is also a great way to spend time with those you are vacationing with, and it is a great way to make memories that will last a lifetime.
Another option for staying close to home is having a staycation. This means staying in your town or city and checking out different things you haven’t gotten to see or do. Taking time to relax and be a tourist in your own city can give you a new perspective on it. A staycation might even make you appreciate your city even more.
Use Reward Points
If you do decide to fly, one way to save money is by getting an airline credit card. When you sign up for an airline’s credit card, you can rack up points that turn into miles. With these miles you are able to save on flights. You might even be able to get your entire flight paid for using only points. Along with this, these cards may offer other perks like free baggage or seat upgrades.
Travel During the Off Season
Traveling during off season can be very helpful when you are trying to save money. This might not always be possible if you are traveling somewhere like a beach or ski resort. In this case you have a limited window of time when you can vacation there. However, if you are able to, this is a great money saving tip.
If you are not able to travel during an off season you can travel on an off day. If you are traveling by airplane, generally the airline will give you the cheapest rates on Tuesday or Wednesday.. Doing your research and finding the cheapest times to visit can save you tons in the long run.
Track Spending on Vacation
Not only is it important that you create your budget up front, but it is important to keep track of your purchases while you are on your vacation. It can be easy to overspend on vacations when you are trying to relax. However, putting in a little effort at the end of the day to write down your expenses can save you from over spending. This way you are able to see what you have already spent and how much you have left to spend. It can also be a great way to remember what you did on your vacation.
The next time you head on a vacation, remember these money saving tips and tricks. You might end up saving more than you thought was possible.