Vacation planning is considerably easier than it used to be, due largely to the internet. After all, locating a hotel, airline, or dinner reservation is just a search away. Unfortunately, the ease of scheduling your leisure didn’t eliminate the cost. Don't you wish there was a way to save money while still having a fantastic summer vacation? Well, you might be able to do it! Here are five strategies to travel on a budget without losing vacation quality.
1. Establish Your Expectations
Before you begin arranging anything for your vacation, you must first determine your travel priorities. If you're unable to settle for anything less than a first-rate experience, you'll probably have to save money before you splurge. On the other hand, if your primary goals are to experience a foreign culture, learn more about history, or simply relax for a few days, you may most certainly fulfill such goals for less money. Begin by determining your vacation priorities. Typical examples include:
● Experiencing a new culture
● Testing new cuisines
● Visiting a particular place, such as a beach or a historical site
● Gaining new knowledge
Once you've determined exactly what you want from your trip, you can concentrate on how to get it and make the appropriate budget choices. Often vacation expenses get out of hand with spur-of-the-moment decisions that end up on your credit card. If you are prone to making these last-minute add-ons, that’s ok, just make sure you leave room in your budget for these changes. This way the paying is over when the playing is done.
2. Establish a Vacation Budget
Booking a trip without a budget in mind might be risky. It's difficult not to be enticed by low-cost flights, online hotel ratings, and numerous attractions – yet you might find yourself overpaying without realizing it. By looking over your personal financial budget and taking your savings, fixed expenses, and variable costs into consideration, you can see if and where you have room for a vacation in your finances.
Bonus tip, many travel websites now allow you to establish a budget and exclude expensive search results from surfacing. A program like the KAYAK Explore module will ask you for your location and how much you want to pay, and then show you places that meet the bill. Saving up for a once-in-a-lifetime dream vacation is a great goal. Make sure you are not taking that once-in-a-lifetime trip every year without the means to pay for it.
3. Stay For Less
Simply by looking at non-traditional lodging options, you may considerably reduce your prices. Furthermore, certain off-the-beaten-path hotel options may make your trip even more memorable. You may avoid paying excessive hotel rates by considering the following options:
● House or Room Rentals: When not in use, homeowners frequently rent out their holiday homes to guests or may rent out a room inside of their home. Using a site like Airbnb is one of the greatest methods to discover such lodgings. When visiting anywhere, but especially when renting, safety is a top consideration. Airbnb checks their hosts and enables community ratings, as well as bestowing the status of "super host" on luxury homes, so you can make an informed decision about where to stay. The firm also provides profile verifications, in which hosts can upload a photo of their government-issued ID to their page.
● Stay with your friends: Call in a favor if you're fortunate enough to have friends and relatives in a trip location. It's a terrific way to save money on hotel rooms, plus they can probably recommend things to do while you're in town.
● Surf Couches: Couch surfing basically is just staying at someone's home rather than an expensive hotel. CouchSurfing.com is a great website that connects visitors with homeowners who are prepared to lend a bed or couch to budget-oriented travelers. It can be unpredictable, but if you're in a pinch, it's one way to eliminate expensive hotels from your travel budget entirely. It is most effective when traveling alone or with one other person.
4. Take Shorter Trips
You don't have to travel for weeks at a time to obtain the experience you desire, whether you're traveling for relaxation or curiosity. Shorter vacations provide the same benefits as longer vacations, but they can be much less expensive. Shorter travels may help you rejuvenate, discover new regions, and try something new – even if they are inside your own state. Traveling to your state capital, visiting a neighboring state park or campsite, or visiting a museum or a local theme park are all inexpensive activities. Some attractions and hotels also offer resident discounts if you can show proof of residency.
5. Travel Together
If other family members are planning excursions, consider making it a group effort. Group pricing for hotels, airlines, and attractions are widespread, with discounts of up to 15%. Many group prices begin at 10 people, and airlines such as Southwest, Delta, and JetBlue all offer them, which can result in savings ranging from 5% to 10% off listed fares. To reserve, you will almost certainly need to phone the reservation center. You can also get group pricing if you book many rooms at the same hotel - but ask when you phone, because online reservations don't always provide the best group rates. Another alternative is to utilize a service like Groople, which allows you to search for group pricing based on your destination and number of people.
Schedule A Consultation with an Experienced Financial Advisor
Here at Fourth Avenue Financial, our first priority is your overall financial success. We hope this week's article was helpful to you in planning your relaxing vacation this year! If you feel you are in need of more guidance in other aspects of your financial life, we’re always here to help. Our mission is to help you develop, implement, and monitor a strategy designed to address your individual situation to ensure all your investments are setting you up for a path of financial success. Ready to start planning for your financial future? Contact us today at (304) 746 7977 to schedule a meeting with one of our experienced financial advisors or schedule online: https://calendly.com/fourthavenuefinancial/introductory-zoom.
Securities are offered through J.W. Cole Financial, Inc. (JWC) Member FINRA / SIPC. Advisory Services are offered through J.W. Cole Advisors, Inc. (JWCA). Fourth Avenue Financial and JWC/ JWCA are unaffiliated entities.