By Lubnah AbdulHalim
“It’s expensive!” This is the response most people give when asked why they don’t take vacations. Cost, alongside the misguided notion, that going for a meaningful vacation involves fancy tours, in a faraway destination, and luxurious accommodation are some of the other reasons.
Well, I have some good news for you, travelling doesn’t need to be a costly affair and with a little bit of saving here and there, the world is your oyster. A budget-friendly or lavish getaway is well within your reach. In fact, some of the most fulfilling and fun travels come at unbelievably low prices. Here are some creative ways to save for your next vacation:
Decide when to travel
With the end of the year already here with us, this is the time to start planning for your next vacation in the coming year by starting to save now. Wherever your dream destination is, it’s always cheaper to travel during the low peak season. You are also bound to make good savings if you book well in advance, therefore do your diligent research and start putting those coins away.
Travel wedding gift
Are you about to say your vows, or do you know someone who is? Jump on the trend of adventure-seeking couples who are opting against conventional gifts by asking their guests to contribute to their travel fund instead of buying gifts.
If you want to properly maximize this, select the venue or destination, and get a proper breakdown of the intended trip, together with proposed activities, for example, spa treats, massage, bungee jumping, game drive, etc., and get your guests to pick what they are able and willing to pay for.
Give up expensive habits
Think about ditching that habitual expensive long island cocktail and eating less take out dishes.
In order to make your travel goals possible, cutting back on spending money especially on leisurely activities will go a long way. You wouldn’t believe how much money can be saved when choosing a night indoors as opposed to eating out or going out clubbing.
Fill up a jar
Find an empty jar, whether it’s an empty margarine container or a mason jar and put it strategically at a place you can easily toss in coins at the end of the day. If you can get the entire family to follow suit by tossing theirs in too, even better.
By saving Sh100 bob daily, in just five months the kitty will have grown to Sh15,000. Therefore, depending on your budget, adjust your savings upwards to meet this goal.
Declutter and sell
Look at everything you have that doesn’t have a meaningful purpose – old clothes, furniture, bicycle, old novel, etc. Basically, things lying around that you’re not using. It’s time high time to declutter your house by selling on sites like Facebook, Instagram, etc or even having a car boot sale and make some money that you can add to your travel savings.
Rent out a room
Another option is to rent out one room in your house on Airbnb or similar sites. This is one of the best ways to quickly build up those savings.
Have a savings goal
If you budget for your trip in advance, you don’t have to spend time stressing over your spending while you’re on vacation.
Carry out extensive research on the costs of your expected expenditures, such as transportation, accommodation, meals, souvenirs, special excursions and tickets to attractions or events. After combining those costs, you’ll have an estimation of how much you’ll need to save.
Now work backwards to reach your savings goal. Divide your estimated vacation cost by the number of months you have before taking your trip to figure out how much money to save aside each month. For example, if you’re taking a Sh100, 000 vacation a year from now, you’d need to save about Sh8, 000 a month for your getaway.
If you’re really determined to see the world, explore new cities while getting your well-deserved break, a little saving and sacrifice will be well worth it in the end.