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    Saving for a Great Summer Vacation

    Key Summary
    A vacation that doesn't create any debt is the best kind to take. Start saving in advance by estimating travel expenses and other various vacation expenses like food, lodging, and activities. Saving in advance allows you to travel knowing that you have truly earned this trip!


    Summer is coming and that means vacation time! Are you thinking of taking a trip abroad? Or maybe doing a bit of camping in a National Park? If you want to enjoy your vacation without relying on your credit cards, now is a good time to start thinking about the various expenses involved and how you’ll pay for them.

    Travel Expenses

    Once you know where you want to go, figure out how much you’ll need to spend. Sign up for travel alerts to your destination. Airlines, hotels, cruise lines, and travel companies often have flash sales. If you’re a student, veteran, or a senior, check for any discounts you might be eligible for. If your dates are flexible, find the least expensive travel times. Compare the costs of flights out of nearby airports. Read sites like trip savvy to help you get the best deals.

    Various Expenses: Food, Lodging, Activities

    Estimate the cost of food, lodging, shopping, local transportation, and the admission prices for places you want to visit. Then divide the total costs by the number of months between now and when you plan to take your trip. This is how much you must save each month.  

    Create a Savings Plan

    Create a savings plan to help you determine how much you can put away each payday. If it looks like you might fall short, you can either reduce your current expenses, take a side job, or do both. A few ways to reduce expenses are to put your cable on hold, check out books and videos from the library instead of buying them, brown bag your lunch, and look for free or cheap entertainment during the months leading up to your trip.

    To earn a little extra money, work overtime if you’re eligible. If you have skills as a web designer, writer, or editor, take on freelance assignments through websites like UpWork and Fiverr.  Organize a garage sale with your friends or neighbors and use the house with the best visibility and traffic. If you live in a city served by TaskRabbit, earn extra money by doing things like packing, cleaning, or assembling furniture.

    Saving is easier when you automatically “pay yourself first,” so consider automating your savings. Set up an automatic transfer, placing a regular amount from each paycheck into your savings account.

    A vacation that doesn’t create any debt is the best kind to take. Save in advance and travel knowing that you have truly earned this trip. 

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