6 Steps to Planning a Vacation on a Budget
Ahhhh summer. School’s out, sun’s out. It’s a time that I love to look forward to! Maybe this summer you are planning a dream vacation. Or maybe you’re just wishing you were on vacation! Here are some tips of how you can afford your vacation without blowing your budget.
1. Figure out how much you have to spend
Check out your budget to find how much you have to spend on a vacation. If you’re paying off debts, I would suggest doing a smaller vacation this year while you continue to make those larger payments. But if you have everything paid off, go enjoy yourself! It’s not a crime.
2. Select a location
After first setting a budget, research on places you can go that fit within your budget. This may mean that you can afford a long weekend to the coast rather than a trip to Bahamas, and that is totally OK! Little getaways like that are always fun to look forward to. If you don’t have enough right now for the vacation you want to go on, keep saving for that dream vacation a few months down the road!
3. List what’s important to you
Make a list of the things that are most important to you while on a vacation. Maybe the location is most important. Maybe it’s a nicer hotel. Honestly, if you’re on a budget and don’t have much for a vacation, you’re going to have to make some sacrifices. You might have to take that red eye flight or you might have to eat more at McDonalds rather than the fancy hotel restaurant. Spend your money on what is most important to you, and make cuts on things that are less important.
4. Consider your time of travel
I know this post is about summer, but if your schedule allows for you to travel in fall or winter, I highly suggest it. These are cheaper travel times, and most likely less crowded (like places such as Disney World). This also gives you more time to save. 🙂 And if you want to go somewhere tropical, it’s still going to be warm in the Caribbean in December! It also makes for a nice break from a Pacific Northwest winter.
5. Search for deals
I know it can be hard to find some travel deals at certain places, but do your research! It doesn’t hurt, and you might find something great! Better yet, find a travel agent. Booking with an agent is FREE to you and your agent will work to find you a good deal.
6. Spend your whole vacation budget
Okay, okay… For those of you who are spenders, this is probably hilarious, but for those of us who are savers, this can be hard! You’ve worked hard for your money, you’ve set it aside for a wonderful vacation, so please use it all! Do something fun. Enjoy yourself!
All in all, know your budget before you plan. You DON’T need to “keep up with the Jones'” with what everyone else is doing for their vacations. Plan something that you can afford and that you will enjoy! So get out there and have fun on your summer getaway!