Tips for an Amazing, Affordable Summer Vacation

With hotter and longer days, it can be tempting to want to spend money on everything in sight. But what if the money you were spending on unnecessary expenses went towards a trip you’ll remember forever? Your ideal summer vacation is definitely possible on a budget, despite what you may think. Planning out the expenses of your vacation can minimize stress before, during and after your trip. These helpful recommendations will teach you how to vacation properly without breaking the bank.

  • Be Practical
    • As nice as backpacking through Europe or cruising through the Caribbean sounds, it is not always possible to take a dream trip of a lifetime when there are other personal expenses to be responsible for. First things first, check your accounts and see how much you are able to spend. Utilizing rental loan and financial counseling services through Till can ease your mind before you begin planning your vacation. When you have a set budget, you will be able to hold yourself accountable. Plan to always stay under budget and don’t plan any activities that will make you go over. Consider who will be coming on this trip with you and the expenses that each person will bring. Begin searching for locations that are close enough to travel by car or a short airplane ride. There are always new places to explore that are closer than you think!
  • Save and Sell
    • Saving money for a trip is not just helpful, it’s necessary. You can save extra funds by creating a dedicated vacation account and cutting excess expenses. Additional expenses can include eating out at restaurants, purchasing coffees, or going out for drinks. Limiting the unnecessary spending before the trip will allow you to enjoy your vacation as much as possible.  A few extra ways to make money for your trip can include offering neighborhood services such as dog-sitting or babysitting or selling any of your used items through platforms such as eBay or Poshmark. Also, look into local stores that purchase any clothing pieces or gently used furniture and can offer cash. Take a look at where you spend the majority of your money and consider options on how to limit these expenses.
  • Estimate all expenses
    • Before you make the trip, plan out what each of your days away from home will look like. The excursions will depend on what type of location you decide to spend your vacation at. Make sure to read reviews and compare prices of any of the activities that you want to embark on. Think about going to the grocery when you arrive at your vacation city to limit the cost of dining out at any of the local restaurants. Eating at home will save you money and allow for more time to be spent with the company of your friends or family.
  • Travel tips
    • Taking a car ride to your vacation spot can be economical and efficient. A few ways to save money on your road trip can be packing food, setting cruise control to limit gas use and comparing gas prices in your area using a platform such as GasBuddy. If you do have the budget to take a trip further than a drive, tracking flights is a must. The best day to book flights is typically on Tuesdays. Tracking prices of flights through Google Flights or SkyScanner will help you to get the best price possible. These websites can keep you updated on price drops and any changes to your flight.

Planning and budgeting for a trip don’t have to be scary or stressful. Considering your expenses before you leave will allow you to relax throughout your summer vacation. There’s a reason that it’s called a vacation. You don’t want to regret your trip, you want to enjoy it!

How to Save For a Down Payment While Renting

  • Pay down your debt: Get organized by writing out all debts owed, monthly payments required, and come up with a game plan. Some people prefer paying the smallest balances off first or try tackling the highest balance to watch it “melt away” over time. You may even be able to lower your payments by consolidating your debt. If possible, pay more than the minimum amount owed to speed up paying it off and lower your overall interest cost over time. Concentrate on one balance at a time until they are payed down or gone completely! Once this is done, you can use those monthly payments to put towards your down payment. Lowering your debt-to-income ratio much faster also improves your chances of getting approved for a loan once you have saved your down payment.
  • Get a roommate: Finding a roommate can help you pay down your debt as well as save for a down payment while on the road to becoming a homeowner. If you’re someone with an extra bedroom, why not rent it out? Be sure to check your lease agreement for sub-leasing requirements first or see about adding them to the lease.
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