Traveling might be on the backburner until a complete roll-out of vaccines, but that doesn’t mean you haven’t stopped dreaming of sipping piña coladas on a sandy beach half-way across the world. If your wanderlust is as strong as ever, take this time to focus on how you’ll finance your next trip once it’s safe to do so.
Keep scrolling to find out how you can save better for a future trip. From travel advice to money management ideas, this list has it all.
Pay Off Debt
Spending more than you have to may sound counterintuitive to your plans, but paying off your debt faster might help you save more money in the long-run. A line of credit or credit card accrues interest and finance charges any time you carry over a balance by making the minimum payment.
Upping your payments until you get your line of credit and credit card balances to zero frees up these limits, eliminates interest payments, and frees up your cash for travel.
Paying down installment loan debt is also a good idea, even though interest doesn’t accrue the same way it does with revolving accounts.
Just be sure to read your installment loan contract carefully before you send an extra or early payment. While a lender like MoneyKey encourages borrowers to make pre-payments, some online direct lenders may charge you for making payments outside your fixed schedule.
Set up Automatic Savings
When you’re busy juggling bills, it’s easy to forget about a vacation that’s been postponed for the next year or so. With your mind on other things, you can easily forget to set aside cash for your holiday.
Automating your vacation savings to come out of your account at the top of your month can help you save, even if you forget.
Use Windfalls to Boost Your Fund
Automation is a good way to contribute regularly to your savings, but sometimes you’ll run into money you didn’t account for in your budget. Windfalls like your tax refund, a bonus, or lottery winnings are a quick way to hit your target.
Expect to Pay More
Flights are cheaper than ever due to low demand, but these prices will rise when airlines attempt to recoup the money they’ve lost during the pandemic. Travel experts predict airfare will cost more in the post-COVID world as travelers get back to their jet-setting ways.
Keep this in mind as you build out your budget. Working with the average price from a few years ago may leave you in the lurch once it comes time to book flights.
Find Savings Elsewhere
When the cost of getting to your destination is all but guaranteed to cost more, try to find savings in other common travel expenses. You might be able to even out how much your vacation costs by skipping the hotel.
House-swapping apps find available accommodations at your destination. You and another user can swap your homes for free. All you have to pay is the membership fee of the home-exchange program you use.
Take Advantage of Your Time at Home
It may not feel like it but being grounded has a silver lining. It gives you the time to focus on paying off debt, building up savings, and planning for the best trip possible.
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