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Tips on Budgeting for Your Next Vacation

The details of planning a vacation can be fun to think about. Where will you go and how long will you stay? Will you fly or drive and who is coming with? What activities will you all do once you are there? As you pencil down each item, it’s important to also ask, how will I pay for this trip? Having a savings plan for your vacation is important so you are not tempted to dip into long-term savings or lean on a credit card. So, whether you already have your vacation planned or are still dreaming it up, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Make a plan. Whether a vacation is a short weekend getaway with friends or a trip to your dream tropical resort, all vacations need one thing – money. When planning your trip, be realistic. To ensure you don’t overspend, make a rough plan for each day that you can follow. Remember to ask yourself questions like is breakfast included at the hotel or will I need to pay for that separate?

Create a budget. Now that you roughly know what you will be doing on your vacation, start budgeting each item. When creating your budget, things like airfare, lodging and admissions should all be fairly accurate. When looking at items you do not necessarily know upfront, it’s always best to aim high so you aren’t caught off guard at the time of payment.

Create a savings timeline.Now that you know how much you will need for your vacation and a probable date for the trip, create a timeline detailing out how much you need to save each week or month to help you reach your money-saving goal. Remember that you may want to frontload some savings so that you have plenty of funding when you start booking travel and accommodations. For some, it may be easiest to create a savings account dedicated to your vacation fund, so you aren’t tempted to dip into it for other wants.

Track your spending.While on vacation, it’s important to keep your ‘good’ budgeting habits going. To make sure you don’t blow through your savings, choose to carry cash so you know exactly what was spent. If you prefer to use a debit or credit card, you can also put a daily spending limit on it.

Now that you know how to budget for your next vacation, it’s time to start planning. If we can answer any budgeting questions or help with setting up a vacation savings account, we would be happy to do so. Give us a call at (800) 235-5331 or contact us here.

F&M Bank – banking that feels right. Member FDIC.

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