May I offer you an aspirin?
Unfortunately, a pill won’t help the type of hangover I’m referring to. No – in today’s blog post, we are talking about the sort of regret that comes when you get stuck with the bill after that summer vacation. If you’ve already finished your summer shenanigans then you’re reading this a tad late. But stick around – it’s not too late to put something into practice for your next big vaca!
#1. Plan Ahead
Alright, the first step to vacationing on a budget is planning your trip ahead of time. If by chance you’ll be flying, I suggest buying your tickets in advance. Most airfare is at peak pricing approx 1 week before departure dates. So buy your tickets 4-6 weeks ahead of time to get the best deals.
- Package Deals
You can save stacks of cash by planning your entire trip around package deals. This could include airfare, hotel, rentals, entertainment, meals. The more you can include in your package deal the more you can save.
After all, you don’t want to get back home and have an empty wallet. Or worse, make an embarrassing call back home part-way through your vacation asking for a money-gram emergency. Plan ahead folks!
#2. Stick To It
This is where it’s good to have a spouse or friend going on vacation along side of you. You need checks and balances while planning your vacation. It can be tempting to opt-in for that extra – whatever.
Ask your sidekick to keep you accountable to the original plan. If you make changes to your vacation plan, be sure to keep your original budget written down in bold lettering someplace so that you won’t lose sight of your original number. Help one another stick to the budget.
#3. Allow 10% Margin
As you just learned in #1 and #2, planning and sticking to it are important. But it’s not a bullet proof plan. There will always be unforeseen expenses come your way, both in the planning stage or while on the road… or plane, or boat, or spaceship…whatever you are doing there will be extras.
It’s a slippery slope, so after you’ve finalized your entire vacation there is one more thing to do before pulling out your credit card for that online shopping cart – Allow 10% (minimum) margin for those unforeseen expenses.
Make your next vacation one that you enjoy even after returning to your normal life. Au revoir!