Sunday, December 9, 2012

Tips for Saving for your Dream Holiday

Have you been delaying your dream family holiday due to a lack of funds? Are you in need of a vacation but don't want to risk racking up any debt? Taking family holidays are important because it gives the family time to relax and enjoy time together. What could be better than creating precious shared moments with loved ones safe in the knowledge that you're not breaking the bank to do so. With some personal budgeting and a plan to save up, your wait for a dream family holiday may be over sooner than you think.

Plan Out Your Vacation
Having a clear idea of the costs of a vacation is imperative. You will have to consider the costs of lodging, airfares, petrol, rental cars, food and drinks and any extra excursions. List out all the major items and think about a number of alternatives as well. Maybe to free up some money for fun family activities you can use your credit card award points or instead of staying at a hotel you could stay at a friend or relatives house or rent an apartment. Be thorough and list all the activities you want to do, assigning a cost to each. If you buy ticket passes online for places such as Dream World, look out for special discounts and reduced prices. Also, use aggregator websites to compare prices for flights and hotels.

Set Up a Regular Saving Schedule
Once you know the cost of your vacation and the time of year that you want to go, you can figure out how much per month you need to save towards your dream holiday. It is also a good idea to set up a separate savings account to collect the travel funds. This will allow you to save rain or shine if you have an automated transfer into this account. Should the monthly saving amount seem too much, you can delay your vacation or find more ingenuous ways to cut back on your expenses.

How to Save on Daily Expenses
To reach your monthly saving target, you will have to scrutinize your spending habits and probably make some sacrifices. Tell the family that everyone will need to chip in to pay to help save for the family holiday. Here are a few simple tips to save up:
  • Cook your meals and avoid grabbing a coffee on the go. This is probably the most effective way to save money. Pack simple but healthy lunches for your kids rather than have them eat at the school cafeteria – you probably don’t like the ingredients the school uses anyway! Avoid the temptation of a coffee from your local barista and make your own.
  • Plan your meals ahead. Try to plan out your meals a week ahead and if you can, match your meal plan with the items on the supermarket weekly specials. Buy seasonal fruits and vegetables and buy dry goods in bulk. Cut out and use your newspaper coupons even if they look crumpled.
  • Cut down on some monthly luxuries. Look through your monthly bills and see if there is a recurring cost you can eliminate: For example, cut out your cable TV subscription and stream videos online instead. Limit yourself to eating out once a month instead of once a week.
  • Have a yard sale. You must have a few lovely items in your closets you don’t need any more. Clothes, books, DVDs, and old toys can easily be sold at a local yard sale
  • Stop buying for 6 months. What about necessities? Of course, buy those but nothing extra. Do not be tempted by sales and consider swapping items you need with friends and neighbours.

With a budget, a saving plan, some self-control and support from each family member, you can easily achieve your dream holiday. You can fully enjoy your holiday and be proud of the fact that you have not incurred any extra debt. The family not only shares some great holiday memories but also learns to save more regularly, helping you save towards your next vacation!

Image Credit
Image courtesy of phalinn /


WendyM said...

Setting up automatic savings is the way I do it. I calculate how much I'll need for the trip and when it could be taken and transfer that much into a separate savings account every week until the trip. Then if I want to spend money on something else, I'll have to go to the trip savings account to withdraw money and maybe take a second thought about the expense.

Brandon D said...

I agree on most of the things said here. My family and I went on vacation this year and it is very important to have everything planned out and have limits on certain things you are going to do so you dont over spend or run out of money. We planned our limits on souvenir items food airfare back and forth and everything in between great article!

Juan Sanchez said...

All great tips! It is a lot of hard work, but after the hard times it all pays off. Hoping I can have another dream holiday soon...

trishden said...

Great tips, when we planned a trip to dream world many years ago, we got a room that had a kitchenete in it and made our own sandwiches instead of buying their high priced options. No one felt cheated. Thanks for your strategies.

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