hether you want to take a vacation to a tropical paradise, or have a mountainous adventure, you will first need to make sure you have the money saved to do so. There are a number of ways to save money, and these tricks will help you to not only save money for your vacation, but also save in general. While a trek to paradise may not be in the cards right away-- and maybe in the immediate future it would be more practical to take a weekend getaway to the shore-- it could be possible in the future with continued saving efforts. In this article find:

  • Tricks to save money
  • How to budget 
  • Steps to take before you leave
Jar on its side with spare change coming out
Saving up your loose change may not be substantial enough to amount to anything in terms of budgeting for your dream vacation.

Tricks to save money for your dream vacation

There are numerous ways to do so, and who knows, some of these ideas may spark other helpful ideas!

The earlier you start to save money for your vacation, the easier it will be to meet your goals and even exceed them. First, it is important to set a firm budget. This means that there is a specific amount of spending that you will not go above. It is not important to be exact, but take everything into account and go from there. Include everything from round-trip travel and lodging to local transportation, sightseeing, meals, and activities. Costs can add up, but if you have everything in mind and are thinking about them in advance, you will be able to adequately account for the costs and take them into consideration.

Set Your Travel Dates in Advance + Put Things in Perspective

Setting your travel dates is a good way to begin to see what you will be spending money on. Thinking about the large costs such as air travel (if that will be a factor in your vacation) lodging, and local transportation will get you into the correct frame of mind for what exactly you will need to be saving for the most. Depending on what your dream vacation is changes the exact nature of what you will be budgeting and saving for. If you are taking a European excursion, the flights will be expensive compared to a local jaunt at a cabin in the woods. So, plan accordingly and your pocketbook will thank you!

Decide Where to Splurge and Where Not to Splurge... Now

Identifying possible places where you will be able to splurge will prepare yourself for these times and won’t break the bank. Setting aside some money for a special dinner, boat ride, or spa day will allow you to enjoy these special treats and make sure that you have enough money to do so.

Open a Savings Account

An important part of saving money is having a savings account to do so in. After you have an idea of how much your trip will cost, you will be able to open a savings account for the main purpose of funding your trip. Once you set up this savings account, you will be able to make sure you have enough money in it for your trip and won’t rack up credit card debt or have to dip into other funds because you will already have the money set aside.

Automate Your Savings Plan

To help save money, doing so automatically is a good way without having to give it a second thought. As difficult as it may seem to save money, if you automatically have money transferred into the account for your vacation, the amount will add up and help you have the vacation of your dreams.

As mentioned above, the money in your piggy bank may not amount to enough to be a real savings for your vacation. On the other hand, continuing to save this petty cash can be a symbolic gesture that you can match when you are ready to go on your vacation. Continue to save the money, and then put that same amount, however small it may be, into your savings for the vacation. This will further get you in the mindset of saving money and setting aside small amounts for later.

Use Tax Season to Your Advantage

Setting aside a portion of your tax refund, if you are in the position for one, will help you to continue to save money. While you may have spent this money on something rewarding right away, saving it for your vacation will be just as, if not more fun, even if it isn’t right away. If you don’t have much of a tax refund near the time of your vacation, think of setting aside some of your bonus if you get one. This doesn’t mean ignoring the other purchases you usually make with this money, such as paying off debts or buying holiday gifts, but rather making sure that your vacation fund makes the cut for these savings.

Balance Saving + Paying Off Debts and Expenses

Speaking of paying off debts, make sure you aren’t ignoring your debts just because it may seem counterintuitive to spend money just to save it again. It is important to ensure you are continuing to pay off your debts to make sure that they aren’t gathering interest and that you will be not only debt free but also stress free when you are ready to take your dream vacation-- or at lease close to it.

Cut the Fat

Think about cancelling nonessential subscriptions that don’t affect your life one way or the other much. This can be the make or break moment for your vacation that you didn’t see coming before. When you spend less money on a magazine subscription or streaming service that does not contribute much to your life, you will be able to rather save this money for your dream vacation. This can also help change the way you see the world and give you much needed time spent with your loved ones. 

Say Goodbye to Uber Eats (At Least for Now)

Eating out less may seem like either a simple step to take or something that is harder because you are not such a great cook. Either way, this money will be able to be put towards something that you have been thinking about for a long time-- going on that dream vacation that you want to treat your family to. Also, cutting back on your latte habit, if that is your cup o’ joe, can increase your savings by quite a bit. Whether that means decreasing going to coffee shops or brewing your coffee at home and investing in a coffee thermos, you will be able to save more money for your vacation.

Person rolling a suitcase
Whether saving for a vacation with your whole family or a solo adventure, you will want to make sure you are budgeting in the same way.

How to budget for your dream vacation

This means not only saving but also making sure you are spending your money wisely

Setting a maximum budget is the first step to spending your money wisely and making sure you have enough of it for your vacation. Doing so can even help you decide where you are going to go. If you set a maximum budget, then you can knock out places that are too expensive for you to stay, as enticing as they may seem. Picking your vacation spot can be the stuff of dreams, especially if you have been thinking of going on a European tour for years, or swimming in the warm waters of Caribbean Sea. It can also be a good way to budget your money and make sure you will be spending it in the right way.

In addition to budgeting for your vacation, you will want to budget during your vacation, so you make sure you aren’t spending too much money, and spending your money in the right ways. Some ways to do this are by carrying cash, tracking your spending daily, and spending on a credit card. By carrying cash, you will better be able to tell how much you are spending a day, putting however much that may be in an envelope each day and going from there. Then, as you spend, track your spending and note how much you spend in a day to be able to adjust your spending in the days to come. If you use a credit card, look into travel rewards cards that can give you the best bang for your buck.

Mother holding a baby and hand of a toddler at a picturesque lake and mountain
Budgeting for your dream vacation means not only taking the steps towards frugal spending during your vacation, but also taking the necessary steps before you leave, as we have already discussed somewhat above.

Steps to take before you leave for your vacation

As we have said above, this can include wise spending before you vacation even begins

Wise spending and clever ways of saving money can contribute to the enjoyment you get out of your dream vacation. Don’t think you’ll be able to put your entire vacation on your credit card and then pay it off when you get home. Rather, take the necessary steps leading up to your vacation to properly save your money and be frugal about spending.

It is an exciting time when you are ready to go on your dream vacation. Don’t break the bank and make sure to take the necessary budgetary steps to make it the most enjoyable it can be!

Oct 21, 2020