Keeping up with good habits can be especially tricky during the summer months. Between sweet seasonal treats like ice cream and savory BBQs, where we consume more meat than might be recommended, staying on track with our health and wellness can be a challenge.
The same goes for our financial well-being. Smart spending and saving habits shouldn’t skip seasons. Just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean your sound financial judgment should be, too.
We’ve got some tips for sticking to your budget and keeping up with your savings this summer, even when you’re traveling. Read on to access these strategies, including some kid-specific ways to start saving and spend smart!
Stick with Saving this Summer
A change in season can switch up your spending and saving habits. Summertime is notorious for this and this particular summer is already packing a punch. According to CNBC, Americans look forward to ‘revenge spending’ after a year inside, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While this is completely understandable — we’re all eager to make up for lost time and delayed opportunities — it’s so important to recognize this temptation and reel in your spending before you sink your ship.
Consider the following strategies to help you stick to a budget this summer, no matter how you plan to spend the season:
Budgeting exactly what you can comfortably spend before you take off on your trip will help you feel more confident making or refusing purchases while you’re away. This includes establishing what you can spend per day on vacation. Pro-tip: Stacey Marmolejo, the executive director at Florida Beach Break, has a super simple vacation budgeting hack for this. “Create a set of envelopes with each day of vacation written on the outside.” Stuff the envelopes accordingly and, if you find you have leftover funds, simply add them to the following day’s envelope.
Take Personal Inventory
Do you know What are the 10 Biggest Travel Expenses? We suggest you review this list and reorder these ten items according to your priorities and preferences. Those that fall further down the list are opportunities to make some smart swaps. For instance, going out for meals and drinks will add up quickly. If that’s all part of the fun for you — go for it, but maybe consider adjusting your accommodations to allow for more splurging at restaurants and bars. On the other hand, if a 5-star luxury hotel is non-negotiable, can you secure a suite or room with a kitchen to BYOB and manage some meals on your own? Only you know where you’re comfortable making some sacrifices to splurge without overspending across the board.
Opt for Experiences over Souvenirs
This can be a tough one, especially if you’re traveling with kids who might already be envisioning unveiling a souvenir in front of their classmates during the show and tell when school resumes in the fall. Whenever possible, it’s a great idea to emphasize the importance of experiences, which will last a lifetime, over trinkets or toys that have more of a shelf life. Spending on experiences is, ultimately, more meaningful, especially if the experience imparts new knowledge or skills to you or your child. For instance, museum trips, swimming lessons, or a cooking class. Moreover, experiences involve planning (return to #1), versus the impulse buying that often accompanies purchasing souvenirs (and the sudden added stress — and expense — of choosing a small gift for any and everyone back at home). Stressing the importance of experiences over souvenirs is a smart (and almost sneaky) way to teach your kids the value of saving, too.
Need more smart saving strategies or help to create a vacation budget you can count on? Our team is standing by to support your financial goals this summer and year-round. Contact us today to get started!