With summer quickly approaching, you may be planning a family vacation or a trip with friends to have fun in the sun. When planning a vacation, it is important to start thinking about budgeting and how much to save in advance. Here are some tips from Royal Credit Union to ensure you can have fun on vacation, while also staying financially conscious!
Begin Budgeting Early
One way to begin budgeting early is by creating a checking or savings account strictly for funding your vacation. With this account, you can set a contribution amount each paycheck, week, or month, based on how far in advance you start this account and how much the vacation will cost. If you are someone who vacations often, you could continue to contribute to this fund after your trip as well, so you’re prepared for your next adventure.
Be sure to budget for costs that are not directly involved in the actual vacation. Prepare to pay for pet-sitters, house sitters, and travelling methods. Set these up ahead of time, so you do not face last minute costs or struggle to find a sitter. It is not common to rent a car in our everyday lives, so be sure to factor in the expense of renting a car and the daily fee.
Decide How You’ll Travel
Although it is dependent on where you go, there are typically two transportation options to choose from: flying or driving. To determine which option is best, research if you will need a car for ease of transportation at your trip location. If you are going to a big city, such as San Francisco or Chicago, seeif public transportation will be suitable for getting around. If you are farther from a big city but public transportation is still available, then consider flying to avoid having to pay for long-term parking. Also, look at current gas prices, as higher gas prices may make flying more cost efficient. Flying may also save you time and avoid the physical and mental stress that can accompany long road trips. If you are in a popular travel destination, you may also want to research walking distances and Uber or taxi prices, as well as hotel shuttle services. Popular vacation spots often provide shuttles at the hotels and resorts you are staying at, including travelling to and from the airport, making them a great cost-saving option.
Create An Itinerary
Prior to leaving for your trip, plan out what you’d like to do while on vacation and when you’ll do each activity. This does not have to include exact locations, but could mean setting aside an hour for lunch, booking various attractions ahead of time, and determining how much you should expect to spend at these different places. By having an itinerary with these details, you will have a loose plan of how much you plan to spend and can translate this into how you save.
Overall, creating a budget and saving money early on can help make your vacation relaxing! Saving up ahead of time is essential to a successful vacation, and starting now can be helpful in saving for other vacations in the future. Although planning can be time consuming, it will be worth it in the end when you’re sitting on the beach or touring a museum you always dreamed of visiting.