The hardest thing about travel planning is saving for your dream trip. For me, putting enough money aside was the difference between a one star and a five star trip. Small sacrifices I made paid off huge when I had my backpack ready and was holding my ticket to Java in my hand. My travel planning began long before my plane ticket purchase. I didn’t have a large bankroll or “sugar daddy” to fund my trip; I did it on my own with some practical travel planning.
There are four main ways to save for your dream trip. Allow yourself some time, up to a year, to save all that you need. Try these practical ideas and get to your destination quicker.
Earning Extra Moolah
It’s the greenbacks that you need lassie! Use your creative noggin to make some extra cash to place in a savings account. Open your account to prepare for the extra cash you’ll be bringing in with these extra ideas.
• Take a second job
• Moonlight on the side by getting some private work and private pay
• Do some weekend babysitting, bartending or personal shopping
• Sell things from your home on eBay or Amazon
• Teach a craft or skill for a fee
Besides making more, you will need to trim your current budget. Look at your monthly expenditures and start snipping. Remember today’s sacrifices will pay off tomorrow!
• Stop ordering and eating out
• Quit smoking
• Skip the bar, have a drink at home
• Brown bag your lunch
• Trade down on your car
• Turn off cable
• Cancel magazine subscriptions
Save, Save, Save
Manage your savings with smart girl savvy. Use these tips to help you save, save, save!
• Stash loose change daily in a piggy jar or travel jar
• Review your travel plans and select the less expensive options
• Store your travel savings in an account that draws you interest
• Keep a spending journal
• Create a budget for you trip
• Make a goal poster featuring pictures of your destination
Offset Travel Costs
Consider taking a non-standard trip. You can offset your trip costs by doing a little “work” along the way. Offset travel costs by trying these money saving travel tips.
• Divide your trip into legs and assign each “leg” a budget amount
• Visit travel forums and ask other travelers about their trip costs
• Volunteer along the way and get free room and board
• Consider alternative travel like train, bus or sailing
Dream Trip Tips
• Keep your money with you at all times
• Carry small bills of both US and local currency
• Put your money in a money belt, neck or leg wallet
• Travelers checks are good to carry too
• Carry a prepaid credit card
Budget Travel Insurance
Whether you dream of dancing around the Pyramids or exploring Pompeii you may need travel insurance. Travel insurance protects you when you lose your belongings, your money is stolen or your trip is cancelled. Review the pros and cons of travel insurance before making a decision.
• If you don’t know the local language and you are hurt, medical insurance will give you medical advice in your native language.
• If you have an accident while trying the bungee or get sick eating a foreign delicacy you will be covered.
• If you have limited personal assets that would be depleted if you were hospitalized.
• Travel insurance can be expensive.
• The insurance coverage may be confusing.
• You may never have occasion to use it.
Alright, adventurous woman, the open road lies before you. Don’t take it by foot; travel in style using your travel savings!