With everyone wanting to get some time to relax, future vacations and summer trips are often a part of our plans. After working all year round, combined with school breaks, summer is a great time to let loose a little and take the entire family on a vacation. Unfortunately, this is also the time when people find themselves committing avoidable financial mistakes.
The trick is about finding the right spending balance between enjoying a summer vacation or trip that doesn’t financially get out of hand; while balancing that with your regular ongoing day to day expenses and your debt repayment plans.
Forget the Budget, Let’s Just Enjoy!
Who doesn’t love travelling? We work hard and deserve a break, it’s so easy and enjoyable to plan a vacation trip with your friends or family. You pick a place, shop a deal, reserve your lodging, and you’re pretty much all set right…but what if you haven’t saved for the trip? Usually we just put it all on the credit cards and deal with it later. In the future, try to set money aside over time and travel on your own money rather than borrowing and paying interest and fees.
Whether you’re hopping on a plane to fly far away, or even just enjoying a week away at a cottage, expenses quickly add up with things we overlooked like, fuel, tolls, car parking, hotel nights, sightseeing tours, vehicle/boat rentals, medical/ travel insurance, eating away from home and a plethora of other requisite fun activities & expenses that sneak up on us without notice.
It is not uncommon for people to find that even during short weekend trips, they end up spending way more than they anticipated; and there are a number of steps you can take to help reduce costs though.
Probably the best place to start is to begin by planning your vacation according to a budget; this can be done on paper by creating a list of anticipated things you will have to pay for and then costing each expense out. You may want to do some online research through either travel review apps, social media or even from friends & family and see if you can find any cost information from those who have gone to your target destination.
Spending Too Much Before the Trip Even Starts
A common mistake is when vacation-goers arrive at the destination, they immediately go shopping for all the latest gadgets, souvenirs, apparel and accessories. Ask yourself, how many beach blankets/ towels, beach toys, and an unreasonable amount of swimwear can you buy to push you above your travel budget? Better yet, take stock of all the previous beach items you have bought, which ones are still usable and ask yourself ,why spend on a new one when the old one works fine?
It would be much better if you can research what you need and what you have before heading to the store.
Blowing The Budget While You’re There
Try not to get caught up with the expensive outings and activities, glamourous dinners, excessive shopping and watch out for those discount outlet malls. All of these things can easily allow us to hurdle past our planned budget or allowances. Restaurants and businesses that cater to vacation-goers depend on big spending in order to survive and thrive. They often hope vacation-goers let their guards down and spend freely under the vacation mindset of ‘budgets don’t matter or apply on vacation’. It’s even tougher when you have kids or extended family with you on vacation and they are begging to do more than what the budget allows.
We hope this article will prove to be useful when it comes to helping you avoid costly vacation mistakes. While we understand that you’re looking to have fun and splurge, it’s important that you don’t go overboard with your spending. We suggest that you be more creative and structured with your vacation plans in order to make the most out of the experience without having to spend a large amount of money. Don’t let a vacation derail your savings plans or goals.
If you’re looking for an Insolvency Trustee, credit counsellor or someone to help you to review your financial situation in London Ontario, Paul J. Pickering and Associates Limited are here to help. We can provide you with an assessment of your financial situation and provide you with solutions that may include, budget reviews, debt counseling, proposals, consumer proposals or bankruptcies to help you get your fresh start. So whether you’re starting to get overwhelmed and you don’t know how to handle your debts and minimum payments, contact our office today, ask questions and we’ll put together a plan that will work for you!