8 Easy Tips To Save For Your Dream Vacation in 2018
Written by: Jessica Kuepfer
January is over halfway through and it is around this time that New Year’s resolutions are abandoned. While we completely understand that getting up before the sun to get to the gym or keeping your diet perfectly healthy can be difficult to stick to, we have some easy steps to make sure that your resolution to travel this year is not the one that is abandoned.
If you have been putting off a dream destination, it is the perfect year to go. Here’s how to get you on your vacation with all the fun and none of the debt.
Make it real
It is easy to say you will go somewhere but until you put a number or a date on it, it won’t seem like a reality. Pick your date, put it on the calendar and put together a timeline to the trip.
Make saving easy
If you have a difficult time putting money away towards a goal, consider opening a travel account and taking money directly off your pay cheque and putting it towards your goal. You can select a monthly maximum and don’t need to be tempted by the money until you are ready to spend it on your trip.
Do some research
With all the online travel comparison tools available, it is easy to see when the most cost-effective time is to travel to a place. Set up price trackers for your flights and purchase when the dollar amount drops.
Spend some time researching your dream destination as well to get the best deals for transportation, hotels and travel insurance. Often, purchasing things together helps you save money and having a plan in place helps avoid any last minute and unexpected costs. You can also consider low cost options for accommodations while you are travelling such as AirBnB.
Set a budget
Know how much you can realistically spend on a vacation and set a dollar amount to work towards. Use budget tools like Mint to track expenses and manage account balances. Every week, Mint sends a snapshot of your spending, which will keep you on track for large, long-term financial goals.
Let credit cards cover some cost
Find a good travel rewards card and use the collected points to redeem for plane tickets (if you’ve been collecting points/dollars for a while), hotel or rental car discount, or gift cards for chain restaurants you’ll visit on your trip. Remember to pay off your balance in full every month as debt is not a souvenir you want to collect on your trip!
Cut expenses in other areas
Look at your budget and see where you can scale back to find extra funds for your travel account. Can you renegotiate your internet or phone bill? If you regularly purchase books, consider loaning from your local library instead. Sell some things you never use on eBay or Kijiji. Avoid paying ATM bank fees wherever possible. They may be small things, but they can quickly add up and have you on your way to your dream vacation in no time!
Consider travelling just before or after peak season. The prices are low, the weather is lovely, shops and restaurants are open and welcome to having tourists, and there will be fewer people around.
Make sure you get the best currency deal
Don’t settle for the first deal you come across. Shop around and ensure that you can get the best rate. Consult with a foreign exchange specialist to save extra money.
No matter where you decide to go in 2018, following a few small steps will have a big pay off and you will be lifting off to your dream destination in no time.