You work hard—and that hard work should be rewarded, right? After all, taking a break and heading off on vacation can boost creativity, motivation, and give us the energy to return to work recharged!
According to this survey, however, 52 percent of people don’t use their vacation days.
One of the top reasons people don’t use their vacation days is the cost. Fortunately, we can help.
With these 10 money-saving methods, you can save up to relax and unwind on your dream vacation. Get reading and start saving today!
1. Goodbye, Starbucks
That venti, half-caf, triple-shot latte you get every morning is eating a hole in your pocket. If you’re serious about saving up for your dream vacation, it’s important you determine areas where you can cut costs, first.
While making your “how to save for a vacation” plan, take a look at your weekly expenses.
Then, determine areas where you can cut back for a while. This can include monthly subscriptions (looking at you, Netflix account) or the box of cookies you add to your grocery list.
While you’re determining where to cut back, keep the end goal in mind.
Imagining yourself on your dream vacation can make these temporary sacrifices seem small in comparison.
2. Set a Budget—& Stick to It!
Once you cut back on frivolous expenses, set a weekly allowance for yourself.
Setting a budget can help you save a little every single day. Over time, the money you save will add up and go straight into your dream vacation account.
Make sure you stick to this budget. According to this report, only one in every three Americans prepares a detailed household budget. That budget can help you stay on track so you can spend money on your dream vacation instead.
3. Use Cash
If you’re having a difficult time keeping to that weekly allowance, set your credit cards aside and use cash instead.
Put your weekly allowance—and nothing more—in your wallet as cash at the start of the week. As the days pass, you’ll be able to see how much you’ve physically spent for the week.
This visual will help you stick to your budget.
That way, you can make your vacation savings plan a reality, day by day.
4. Talk About It
Announce your vacation plans to family and friends. Once everyone knows about your vacation savings plan, you’re setting an expectation.
This will put you under pressure to make your dream vacation a reality.
That way, you’ll do everything possible to save money and make it on your trip—instead of feeling embarrassed if you fail.
5. Set a Separate Account
All that money you’re saving has to go somewhere, right? Instead of placing it in your usual savings account, set it aside.
A separate bank account that’s dedicated to your dream vacation fund will help you see how much you’re saving.
It will also keep you from withdrawing more money than you should before your vacation. If you can’t save enough by the time your set vacation date rolls around, check out this Bonsai Finance article for a little help.
6. Dine In
We all love splurging on takeout every once in a while—even when we know there’s food in the fridge.
Cutting back on these dinners is one of the best ways to save money for your dream vacation. Instead of eating out, plan your meals for the week.
Make a grocery list and stick to it. By planning your meals in advance, you can also make it easier to stick to your weekly budget.
It helps to plan meals you actually want to eat, too.
That way, you’re avoiding unnecessary expenses and getting excited about a week of delicious dinners ahead.
7. Sell Old Stuff
All that old stuff that’s just collecting dust in your garage or attic could also contribute to your dream vacation fund.
Clear out the clutter and sell the stuff you don’t need. One man (or woman’s) junk is another person’s treasure, right? By clearing out this old stuff, you can add a little to your dream vacation savings and get a step closer to your goal.
Check out junk shops, flea markets, antique shops, or host a garage sale to clear out the clutter!
A few extra bucks every day can go a long way to helping you achieve your goal.
Try getting a part-time job to help you save. Whether it’s for a few months or a year, those extra paychecks will add up over time. Eventually, they’ll make a big difference in helping you relax and unwind on that trip out of here.
9. Plan It Out
It’s difficult to know how much to save without knowing how much you’ll eventually spend.
While you’re determining how to save for a vacation, try to make a list of your eventual expenses. This can include everything from flights, hotels, rental cars, food, souvenirs, and any other expenses you expect.
Once you plan out your trip, you can plan how much to spend, too!
10. Eye on the Prize
As you’re saving up for your dream vacation, remember why you’re doing all of this in the first place.
Selling old belongings or taking on a second job can seem daunting, but it’s all worth it once you’re in the clouds and headed to your vacation destination.
If it feels like saving is taking a long time, don’t get frustrated. Instead, remain patient and take it day by day. Keep visualizing yourself on that dream vacation to put it all in perspective.
There’s no one best way to save money for vacation expenses. With a little patience and these tips, though, you’re one step closer to the vacation of your dreams.
Sweet Escape: 10 Ways to Save for Your Dream Vacation
With these 10 money-saving methods, you can save for your dream vacation and head off on a sweet escape!
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