The reality is that most of us don’t have unlimited monetary resources. The good news is that you don’t have to have a ton of money to have a great vacation. You can still see the world and have a great time with your friends and family on a budget.
When it comes to spending money, you maybe much happier spending your hard-earned dollars on new experiences, instead of new things. We understand that life happens, and sometimes you have to pony up for a new dishwasher or a transmission replacement. But when you’re thinking about the best places to allocate the money in your budget this year, consider places you want to go and things you want to do, and we’ll help you and your loved ones get there and make memories without necessarily breaking the bank.
One of the best ways to make sure your trip is affordable is to plan it out ahead of time. There are two ways to do this:
- Come up with a maximum dollar amount that you are willing to spend on your trip, and do your best to plan around that.
- Cost out all the things you want to do during your trip and decide if the final sum is a number you are comfortable with.
No matter what method you choose, have an idea of what you’re going to be spending before you hit the road. Decide with whomever else you’re traveling with the things you are willing to compromise on. Is it more important for you to eat a nice meal, or sleep in a more comfortable bed? This can help cut down on the number of surprises you encounter along the way and can give you a good idea of what your financial obligations will be.
Get creative with cheaper alternatives to keep your trip on budget. Flying can be expensive these days, so maybe it’s time to pack the car, or rent an RV, and take the family on a road trip across the country! Instead of dining out at 5-star restaurants along the way, scout out some serene locations on your route and plan picnics. Just because you are cutting costs doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself and your family to memorable and unique experiences.
Bring What You Can
No matter what your method of travel is, you can cut your costs by bringing some essential items with you, especially if you are traveling with kids. Though they seem small, items like snacks, books and magazines, and headphones, are things that can make your travel experience much smoother, but may cost you a pretty penny if you have to purchase them at an airport, train station, or rest stop. Make a quick trip to your local grocery store and library before you set off and start saving money before you even hit the road.
Whether you are planning a family vacation or time away with your friends, it’s the time we spend and the memories we create with the ones we love that can truly make us happy.