You want a vacation but your credit cards are maxed and your savings account…what savings account? How are you going to bankroll that dream vacation to Orlando? Here are 15 ways to put some vacation money together in a hurry.
1) Stop Spending
This may sound about as appealing as “Stop Eating” but if you want that dream vacation, it’s the only foolproof way to conserve the cash you have. So suck it up. Stop spending on non-essentials. (At least till vacation.)
2) Start a Vacation Savings Account
Set up a dedicated savings account where you do your banking. Call it “My Vacation Savings Account.” Earmark a specific amount of your paycheck and deposit it every time you get paid.
3) Set up Direct Deposit Saving
Banks, credit unions, and other savings institutions will set you up with Direct Deposit: your check goes directly to them and they deposit it into accounts you choose. Specify “put $X into my Vacation Savings Account” and forget about it. When vacation time rolls around, you've got a nice little nest egg…painlessly.
4) Have a Garage Sale
Look at all the STUFF you've accumulated over the years! You can kill two birds with one stone by holding a garage sale right in your front yard: first, you get rid of things you haven’t used in years. Second, you turn useless clutter into folding money for your vacation!
5) Garage Sales
Garage sales are a great way to turn $5 household items into cash but if you have first edition books, or antique clothing, or good jewelry to liquidate — in other words, anything worth more than $20 or so, don’t sell it at a garage sale: you won’t get what it’s worth. Take ‘em to a book dealer…an antique dealer…a jeweler. They may buy them, or at least give you a good idea of what they're worth. Then you can put an ad in the paper or try your hand at selling on eBay.
6) Stuff The Piggy Bank
Loose change? An extra dollar here and there? Throw ‘em in the piggy bank, cookie jar, whatever. Pennies make dollars, dollars make that vacation dream a reality.
7) Everybody Pitch in
Whole family going on vacation? Time for a family meeting. Agenda: “We’re all going, we all need to help pay for it.” Even little Jimmy can pull his weight with a lemonade stand out front! Savings accumulate faster when everybody helps, and it teaches youngsters (and oldsters!) the value of a dollar.
8) Get a Part Time Job
You can put on a big push for a couple of months, can’t you? Go ahead, go get that part time job to earn some extra bucks. It doesn’t have to be glamorous, it’s not a career. It’s a means to an end. Flip some burgers now, wiggle your toes in the Florida sand later.
9) Savvy Spending
That dream vacation doesn’t have to explode your credit cards. Be smart and spend less as you prepare for vacation. There’s no shame in being frugal.
10) Drive or Fly?
Depending on how far you’re traveling, and how many are going, it may be a lot cheaper to drive than fly, even with gas, tolls, motels, and meals. And you’ll have a car when you get there — you won’t have to rent one. Do the math. You may be surprised.
11) Shop For Airfares
Buy early, compare airline prices, consider driving a few hours to fly out of an airport where flights cost less.
12) Consider Travel Insurance
Yes, it costs a few bucks but you SAVE hundreds if someone in your party gets sick and can’t go.
13) Pack Light
Different airlines have different policies about number of bags and their weight. Check it out online. If the limit is 50 lbs. max, don’t pack 51 lbs. Get a travel scale!
14) Consider Budget Hotels
Hotels all look the same when you’re asleep. Of course you want clean, safe lodging. But you can save a ton of money by choosing less fancy digs on vacation. (Ever notice the cheaper hotels feature free breakfast, free internet, and free parking while expensive ones charge for them? Why is that?)
15) Use your Common Sense.
We have discussed the 14 waye above, now you may use your common sense for saving money accordingly. You may also share about what you have done to save money for your vacation.
Steve M. is a freelance writer based in Miami. He is a frequent content provider to Vacation Rental Pros.