With schools finally letting out and the summer holiday season just around the corner, it goes without saying that the stress of planning a vacation is imminent. Be it a group holiday or a one-person adventure, it can be frazzling to decide on all of the necessary details in order to enjoy a couple of relaxing days away from home. The right destination, the perfect itinerary and the time frame are crucial, but what can exact a high price on a person’s mood while planning is, of course, the budget.
No matter the circumstances of your holiday, money does the talking when settling any issues. In order to make the most of your time and resources, a holiday budget can be incredibly helpful. It is necessary to be realistic when planning your expenses, and creating your holiday budget is best done in two stages:
- Before the trip
The destination, accommodation and means of transportation all need to be decided beforehand. The best way to avoid becoming overwhelmed with the expenses you will have is to get an early start. Once you decide on a time-frame for your holiday, don’t hesitate to begin the search! Cheap flights and places to stay are much more easily found in advance. Moreover, the extra time you allow yourself can be spent finding the best option available. A few tips on managing a budget before your holiday are:
- Research previous vacations
Take a good look at your expenses from previous holidays. Did you spend more than you initially planned to? If so, look at why. Maybe you found an accommodation that was over budget, or maybe you let yourself be influenced by others. Make a list of where you lost money, and then include those situations in your calculations for this holiday.
- Save up money from your day-to-day life
It’s always great to go on holiday and not have to constantly look at price tags. However, if you find yourself in a financial situation that usually doesn’t allow that, you can always make sure you have some spare change on top of your initial sum of money. Put away those few bills that you are inclined to spend on a cup of coffee on your way to work and use them on your holiday! Keep them in a separate place and use them on small things that make you happy during your stay.
- Expect the unexpected
There are few instances when your holiday will go exactly according to plan. More often than not, there will come a time when your heartbeat will spike and you will have to come up with a quick solution. In order to make sure that solution doesn’t take up the entirety of your budget, think ahead and ensure that in your packing you don’t forget anything that might come in handy.
- During the trip
When you finally arrive at your destination, the last thing you want to do is worry about money. You want to let your hair down and enjoy the few days spent away from your usual routine, and that can always happen when you stick by your holiday budget! The best ways of managing your budget when on your holiday are the following.
- Set your limits
Make sure you know how much you want to spend overall during your holiday. Set a realistic goal, and stick with it by choosing wisely on what to spend your money on. Take into account any possible gifts or other purchases that you might make, and set an affordable price range for them.
- Create your itinerary
Make a list of the places you’d like to go and the activities you’d like to do during your holiday. Then, check the possible prices and make sure that they fit into your set limits.
- Look for deals
You can always find places and activities that, while not on your initials list, come at a lower price! Moreover, there are multiple resources over the internet that can help you lower your expenses on restaurants, flights and many more. (Two such examples are Tripadvisor and Expedia)
Holidays are meant to be a time spent away from the stress of the mundane, and the best way to ensure that you will not lose money when enjoying yourself is by having a holiday budget. In the end, no matter your financial situation, it is always better to be prepared!