How To: Save Money on Vacation

IMG_4492 (1)This past week, Fangirls, I went on a unbelievable vacation. I had been planning it for nearly a year, but when the time came for the trip, I was as broke as ever. We had been saving, but my girlfriend & I both lost our source of income, and then were victims of a scam that left us pretty dry. However, we weren’t going to let that stop us from enjoying the hell out of that vacation. 

I’m sure a lot of people have been in the same situation. You’re given the opportunity to go on a wonderful trip, but don’t have much going on in the bank. Have no fear, Fangirls. There are ways to make it work. Things will be a little tight, and a little limiting at times, but it’ll be worth it once you’re at your destination relaxing your booty off.

First things first, make a budget. Figure out how much everything, everything, is going to cost and try to come up with the most accurate number you can. Decide what you need and how much you can spend. If you’re driving, look up the route there and calculate exactly how much gas you’ll need. Decide what your expenses are going to be, and try to leave out as many “wants” as possible, and leave to the “needs”. Once you’ve figured all that out, get a debit gift card. These are like temporary debit cards that you can gift to people, or yourself. You can use them anywhere that will except that brand of card, and place pretty much as much money as you want on there. The only thing is you can’t take the money back out to get cash if needed. If you think you’ll need some cash, subtract that from your budget and take it out separately. Only place your exact budget amount on the card, and bring only that with you for spending money. This will keep you from going over board in spending, and keep you in check with needs and wants. visa_giftcardOnce you’ve got your budgeted out card, it’s time to go shopping. Grocery shopping. Spending money going out to dinner can really put a dent in your bank account, especially on vacation. So that’s why yo just shouldn’t do it. I know it’s hard, it’s fun to go out to eat, it’s excting and adventurous. I’m a huge foodie who loves trying the local fare everywhere I go. But at the moment, I just can’t afford to do that. So I went to the market and bought food for the entire week. Everything I would need to eat three meals and some beach snacks everyday. I made a budget for this as well which was included in the money I put on the card. I went to the grocery store (and the liquor store) with a list of what I wanted and wrote down how much everything was. I estimated for tax, then came up with a number of how much it would cost, put the money on the card, and went to buy my food. It worked out great on vacation, and it saved my so much money. Not to mention, it was also healthier to be able to plan out more nutritious meals than eating restaurant food.

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When it comes to vacation, it’s all about the activities. Even if that activity is just relaxing somewhere. If you’re looking to go more out and about though, that can get pricey. IMG_4547That doesn’t mean that you have to skip out on what your destination has to offer. My girlfriend and I looked for cheap or free things that we could do. Sitting on the beach for a few hours everyday didn’t cost us a cent. We also found a few free museums and other locations to check out, like this amazing zoo where I faced my fears and stood next to a bear. We got up early to watch the sunrises from the beach, and walked around the downtown area to get a feel for it’s nightlife. We didn’t have to be throwing back drinks in a local bar to have a fun night downtown. Fun is what you make it, I always think if you’re bored, you’re boring. That especially goes for vacations. If there’s not a lot to do, or you can afford to do a lot, there’s always something to find that will make you’re vacation fucking awesome.

So book that trip, and don’t be afraid, Fangirls. You can still have an amazing, relaxing vacation when you haven’t got much money to your name. It all comes down to a lot of lists, a lot of planning, and a lot of thinking ahead that ends up being so much more than worth it. Even with being broke, planning ahead and being careful with my money got me here, where this was the view from my window. IMG_4408

 

 

You deserve a vacation this rad, Fangirls. Go get ‘cha some.

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