There are a lot of words we think of when we see the words “cost-effective”: cheap, lesser, affordable, etc.
But let’s look at it another way. Could you ever afford your summer vacation to begin with? Not according to the Federal Reserve. According to their latest report, only 1 in 5 Americans report paying off their credit card debt in the last 12 months. 1 in 5 Americans will go into debt to pay for their summer vacation. We pay more than we should when it comes to auto insurance, rent, and interest rates on credit cards. And even less can afford a $500 emergency expense.
In so many words — we suck at money.
Well, maybe not you personally, but as a society we’re just not very good. The summer is the time for us to unwind, get (half) naked, and spend more money than we typically do.
Start by Saving
There are all sorts of ways to save money. The most essential is one we’re always talking about: budgeting. But if you haven’t already begun budgeting beforehand, budgeting won’t help (unless you were serious about those new years resolutions). So we suck at money, which means we can’t have as much fun for vacation — fine; why am I still reading this blog then?
Have a yard sale! In the world of budgeting, it’s a little like studying for your final exam by depriving yourself of a morning to cram in extra studying. Yard sales are typically good for a few hundred dollars as long as you know how to execute one the right way. What’s the right way? Early Saturdays work best near the 1st or 15th of the month, and because this is the internet era, make sure to boost your attendance by posting it online.
Pro tip: be sure to make sure your garage sale is even legal. They usually are, but the law sometimes requires a permit in case you’re selling items that are potentially unsafe.
Save your Savings
Whatever your vacations plans are, saving money is universal. No matter where you go, you can always keep from overspending. Here’s how:
- Pay attention to bank fees if you travel outside the country. Banks can charge you extra for a host of things: when you pay over the phone, requesting an additional card, replacing your card if lost, and set-up fees. Call your bank to identify (or possibly negotiate) credit tripwires.
- Need an app to help you compare currency rates, or produce a packing list based on the weather? We’ve got you covered.
- Not afraid of mother nature? No problem! It sounds morbid and possibly a little heartless, but places recovering from natural disaster can sometimes offer cheaper rates for travel/room.
- Don’t buy stuff at the airport! Like movie theatres, snacks cost three times the price. Did you know the average Americans spends $27 on vending machines? That’s the same price as this pretty cool travel pillow* that holds your neck in an ergonomic position.
- If you travel, learn to be a good talker. Why is this important? It’s important because nobody knows the place you visit like those who call it home. Sure you could scour the internet, and tally all the best yelp and google reviews. Or you could strike up a conversation with a local, and get their expert opinion.
This blog could turn into a thousand-word essay on the many ways you can save while traveling, but you get the point.
*Make sure to read the comments section for this item. Not everyone’s a fan.
For a FREE credit evaluation that can get you credit that travels (and saves), contact us by visiting us at our committed offices at 6989 Alamo Downs Pkwy, San Antonio, TX 78238, or call us at 210-520-0444.