Vacations and breaks are an absolute necessity. Have you got wanderlust? Or is there somewhere you really want to go, a place you want to visit or a memory you want to make in a far off distant country? If you’re anything like me, you’ll have a list of places near and far that you want to visit. I hear the sentiment from my friends and colleagues all the time, They’ve always dreamed of traveling, but actually doing it seems out of reach, with everyday financial obligations. Since travel has always been part of my life, a lot of my friends ask me how I balance working and traveling—and especially how I fund it all.
No matter where you go, traveling can take a huge toll on your bank account — which is why planning and saving up is a must.
In my case, I became to determined to make travel, social good, and education part of my career. But others, who are juggling families, day jobs, and other personal responsibilities, may require different amounts of planning and resources to take a trip. So, in either case, how can you make travel a reality?
It all depends on your travel style and goals for your trip. There are plenty of simple things you can do to get to where you need to be financially for your trip. All it’s going to take is some time and commitment. From making the most of budgeting tools to picking up a side hustle, ahead are some life-changing tips that will get you to that dream destination. So, how can you take the dream trips you didn’t know you could afford? It takes few steps.
1. Plan your trip smarter and dream.
If all else fails and you can’t come up with the money, perhaps it’s time to reassess your getaway. “My general advice is to look for destinations that are seasonable, but that still have amenities during the off-season“ I think travelers should try waiting until the same day and they’ll often find some exceptional deals along with an unexpectedly great hotel. If you can’t imagine your dream trip, you can’t take it! Everything we accomplish begins as an idea first. Where are you longing to go? Start seeing yourself there.
2. Book in advance and start saving.
There’s a lot to be said for spontaneity when it comes to going away, but if you want the most cost effective trip then booking in advance is key. Also, if you can, book when travel providers have sales. The plus of booking in advance also means that you have longer to pay for the trip, and you can stretch the payments over as many months as you need. Breaking it down in to smaller, more affordable chunks rather than putting yourself under huge financial pressure in the few months before you go. It doesn’t matter if it’s $20 or $200, but it DOES matter if the fund exists in theory or in reality. Whether you’re saving in a whole life policy that you can borrow against for travel, or saving in a bank account or a jar, start putting away money for your trip! You can also purchase a hotel stay or book your airline tickets as you are able, thereby checking off your expenses as you go. As you’re saving, you’ll also want to look for opportunities to save money on expenses by paying less than full price.
3. Look for coupons before you purchase.
Whether it’s in-store or online, there’s almost always a coupon available for your purchase, and taking the time to find one is totally worth it if it means more money in your pocket.
4. Make realistic goals.
Create a budget plan that’s comfortable for you and don’t feel pressured to completely deprive yourself of things you enjoy. Breaking habits doesn’t happen instantly and there are healthier ways to approach avoiding those daily Starbucks runs. “Saving for long-term goals is tricky,” Carter said. “It’s easier to slowly chip away at parts of your routine. For instance, opt to stay in one weekend, instead of going out.
5. Plan Your Days.
As you get closer to your trip, start thinking about the things you want to do – spend time researching and investing time in finding deals and discounted tickets etc. The same principle applies as when you book the trip itself – booking excursions and attractions in advance means you get a better rate (generally speaking) and if you can’t get the better rate in advance,”researching will tell you how to get the cheaper tickets when you arrive so you’re fully prepared.”