5 Tips For Saving Money During Vacations!

Everybody needs it: vacation time! But nobody needs to feel the stress of finances when they are trying to enjoy a nice relaxing vacation from work. I’ve compiled a few great tips to help you save money during your vacation, while keeping the stress under control! Some of these might not be for all of you, but I’m sure you’ll all find a nugget of wisdom somewhere in here.

1. Change Your Monthly Budget

One of the best ways to make sure you don’t overspend in a vacation month is to budget your non-vacation time and money. For example, let’s say you are going on vacation for one week, and your normal monthly grocery budget is $300. Simply subtract the vacation time (1/4 of the month) from the $300. $300 – $75 = $225. Follow suit with all your other budgeting categories and only spend 3/4 of your normal budget during the month of your vacation. This will keep you from over spending when you’re away.

2. Set Your Vacation Budget

Not only do you need a budget during your ordinary working days, but you should always have a budget on vacations. Understandably, you’ll want to spend a larger than normal portion of money during your trip. After all, you are on vacation!

The key is to be intentional. Be intentional about how long you have until your vacation and how much money you have to save up during that time in order to reach your goal. The earlier you start on your vacation savings, the easier it’ll be to save each and every month without fail.

As a rule of thumb, try to plan your vacations at least 6 months in advance. This will give you ample time to reach your vacation savings goal. Remember, saving a little each month builds up over time, and before you know it you’ll have a bundle of cash to spend on your trip.

3. Spend . . . Cash?

To truly control your spending on vacation, you might want to consider spending cash instead of using debit or credit. Having a visual of your vacation money will help keep the costs under control. I always say that cash is never easily spent if it is all you have to spend. For vehicle rentals or hotels, it’s a good idea to bring along a debit card for those purposes. But try buying everything else with cash. Remember, this is a just a suggestion, not a rule written in stone.

4. Limit Eating Out

On vacation, it can be tempting to eat out all the time. Instead, try setting a schedule for how many times you’ll allow yourself to hit the restaurants. You’ll save a great deal of money making sure you’re not eating it all away.

Try this: Shop the local markets and find fresh fruit and veggies. When we went on our honeymoon in Hawaii, many times we would buy all kinds of local fruits to snack on. We also shopped at a grocery store so that my wife could prepare delicious meals.

Don’t be afraid to cook at your hotel if you can. Remember, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a good time. Be conservative and save as much as you can muster.

5. Ask Yourself If You Really “Need It”

Souvenirs. You know, all those magnetic trinkets attached to your fridge? Do you really need them? Whenever you are shopping on vacation, ask yourself the simple question of whether you really need the item that caught your eye. This easy question will filter out all the items that you really don’t need and ensure you keep some cash in your wallet.

Think back: Where was your last vacation, and how much did you spend? Meet us in the comments!

Ready to Quit Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck?

Just click to join 225,000+ others and take our FREE email course to better manage your money, pay off debt, and save! And get FREE access to our money-saving workshop ($29 value)!

Related Articles:

  1. Marian

    Your ideas are good, but your wife cooking on the honeymoon was a little much. I notice you didn’t say “we shopped so WE could prepare delicious dinners”. On a normal family vacation, especially with kids, it’s good to eat at least breakfast in and try to pack lunches, but the honeymoon should be a work-free splurge for both the new husband and wife. The poor girl will be cooking for the rest of her life!

  2. Courtney

    Hi Marian! I’m John’s lucky wife 🙂 Believe it or not cooking is something I LOVE to do, especially when I’m somewhere new with such diverse local ingredients available! I definitely didn’t cook every night we were there, but it was fun to try some new things in the kitchen and also was a way for me to wind down after a day of fun! We recently got back from a vacation to California to visit John’s family, and I ended up doing the same thing.. I’m not much for eating out personally, so being able to spend some time in the kitchen and prepare something I know my husband and I both like (and is good for us) makes me happy.

    • John Frainee

      What can I say? I’m a lucky man!

  3. John Frainee

    Hey thanks Amber! I appreciate it!

  4. Jeff Smith

    for #5 – we take picture of the trinkets. At one store on vacation, we couldn’t decide, so we took pictures. My daughter does this all the time. You have the trinket, without having to buy it. Helps limit buyers remorse too.

  5. Jeff Smith

    BTW: your other suggestions were great too. We started doing the cash deal a couple of years ago and now we budget our vacations days each month. I know how much we can spend each day. Some days we just hang at the pool so we can spend more tomorrow (like for a show). It works great.

  6. Linda

    When we go on vacation we put money in an envelope for each day. If we don’t spend it all we can spend it later or save it .It’s great when we have money to take home.