How to Enjoy Vacation Time When You’re On a Budget
Everyone looks forward to a vacation, in fact, it’s a highlight of most people’s year, getting away from it all and doing just as you please for a week or two. Unfortunately, if your budget is tight, then going on vacation probably seems like an impossibility. Travel doesn’t usually come cheap, and splashing out on a trip you don’t really need might sound like a pretty irresponsible idea. However, there are ways you can enjoy some of the benefits of vacation time without breaking the bank.
Is a vacation that important?
It could be viewed as an indulgence you can’t afford if you’re short of cash, but there are good reasons to consider accommodating a break. Even the most financially challenged of people who are struggling to pay off debts are encouraged to set aside a small amount of money to treat themselves. It could just be a couple of dollars a week for a magazine or a good cup of coffee, but the point is that without something enjoyable to look forward to, the stress of making ends meet can be so unrelenting that it can lead to both mental and physical health problems. This, in turn, can affect your ability to work and earn enough to live, which makes things even worse. So making time to relax, de-stress and enjoy yourself is an important part of managing on a low income.
Examine your budget
If you’re economizing for any reason, then having a personal budget to keep track of what you’re spending and enable you to forecast how your finances will look over the coming months is essential. For your vacation planning, the first task is to have a really good look at your budget and forthcoming spending to see if there is any spare cash available. If you’ve been sticking to your planned expenditure, you may have a modest amount of cash to play with, so it’s worth checking. Depending on your financial situation, it may be worth looking at rates for short-term loans of small amounts that you would be able to repay promptly. If you’re contemplating this as an option, get some advice from an independent financial service web page on how to apply for and choose a payday loan.
Saving money on travel
The major factors determining the cost of travel are where you’re going, and what time of year it is. If you can go during an off-peak season, you’ll make some big savings, and if you choose less well-known destinations, you will save money too. Simply keeping away from the tourist hotspots can make a significant difference to the price of a week away. Hotels are usually a more expensive option, so look at holiday lets, lodges, cabins and mobile home parks for more economical accommodation. You could also book your stay as a share with friends or family members, reducing the cost of your contribution for a holiday let. Another money-saving way of taking a vacation is to go for a low-cost option like camping that will be a fraction of the price of standard accommodation. This is a great choice for families as kids love the idea of sleeping under canvas.
Finding vacation bargains
Shopping around for the lowest prices has never been easier now there are price comparison services online for all kinds of travel. Timing your booking can be something of a lottery because many companies offer lower prices when you book well in advance while charging premium rates if you leave it until closer to the time you wish to go. On the other hand, you can find some very cheap options by waiting until the last minute, though your choice will be restricted to what is available at the time you search. When you’re bargain hunting, just be careful to find out about any extra charges that may not be immediately obvious. For example, an airline may advertise seats at very low prices that sound too good to be true; if you check all the details, you may well find that although the tickets are cheap, there are additional fees for hand baggage or other services.
If you can’t find any travel options that suit your budget and your interests, then rather than giving up on the idea, see if you can organize a staycation. This concept has become a popular choice for many people in recent years and can work very well if you can resist the temptation to see to household chores for the duration of your break. Staying in your own home has obvious cost benefits, but to make it work as a relaxing break, you do need to arrange days out and avoid falling back into your normal routine. You will find that wherever you are located, there will be plenty of choices when it comes to visitor attractions and places to visit. To keep your costs to a minimum, taking a picnic and heading off for a long walk from the vicinity of your home can make a great day out. Likewise, the beach, or any number of wild areas and forests, can make highly enjoyable low-cost options for days out.
Keeping your spending down
Often the cost of feeding yourself, paying entrance charges, local travel fees and so on can mount up to a fairly hefty sum. If you’ve managed to save enough for your travel and accommodation costs, or you’re staying at home and taking day trips, you can soon overspend on the day-to-day expenses. To avoid this trap, take enough essential supplies with you so that you don’t have to buy such items as sun-cream or buckets and spades at a premium. Make your own packed lunches, and cook your own meals if you can instead of eating out all the time.
Vacations are such an important way to recharge your batteries and spend time having fun with your family that it’s worth making an effort to have some form of break. Even if you can’t afford an all expenses paid a trip to Disney World; you can still have a fantastic time on a modest budget.