Are you planning a summer vacation?
Unfortunately, it may be more expensive to travel in 2018. Both airline ticket prices and hotel fares are increasing, which may make a sunny beach vacation or adventure-filled getaway a little less attainable. Considering that last year, 74% of Americans said they went into debt to go on vacation, the increased prices won’t be favorable to most budgets.
So if you’re looking for a little R&R, or a fun trip for the family to enjoy, you’re going to have to plan meticulously. Decide what you can spend without going into debt and ignore how the world tells you to vacation. (If you do have credit card debt, get in touch with Christian Credit Counselors to develop a plan to eliminate it.)
Here are some practical ways to have a wonderful summer vacation and save money:
Make a spending plan.
No matter what, decide how much you are going to spend and stick with it. This goes for your kids, too. Let them earn an allowance to use on vacation and help them plan for how they will spend it.
Save in advance.
You can make saving for the trip a fun activity for the whole family. Make one week out of each month is a “pantry dinner” night where you don’t buy any groceries and come up with recipes from what you already have. Make a saving chart for the kids. Talk to them about planning for the summer vacation and offer to let them pick up extra chores to add to their vacation spending plan. It’s a great opportunity for you to teach them about delayed gratification and to model what disciplined saving looks like.
Do your research and plan ahead.
Starting at least a few months in advance, check frequently for coupons, deals, and packages to save money. Most airlines and hotels give better rates far in advance or day-of travel. Unless the spontaneous trip is what your family is looking for, planning ahead works best.
Skip the resort.
Unless you find an amazing deal, resorts are likely to be overpriced and crowded. Research other options, like an Airbnb, or a condo. If you can, stay somewhere with a kitchen and cook the majority of your meals. Eating in for breakfast and dinner alone will save you hundreds of dollars. If you do want to eat out, try to go only for lunch to save extra cash.
Bring a buddy.
Plan a trip with another family to save on some of the costs. You can trade off cooking different nights and find better coupons.
Plan a staycation.
There are so many options for a staycation and they can end up being the most restful and fun! Go camping, visit a national park, find a drive-in theater, be a tourist in your own city, spend a day at a theme park, or find new hiking trails.
Focus on making memories and having meaningful experiences without accumulating debt. If you need to pay off overwhelming credit card debt, get in touch with Christian Credit Counselors. They’ve helped over 300,000 thousands lift the burden of overwhelming credit card debt and can help you too!
Have you successfully planned a fun, affordable vacation? Share your ideas (and pictures!) with us on Facebook.