You deserve a vacation to the coast to unwind and recharge while you soak in the sunshine and the salt air. One of the most common justifications for putting off such an experience is budget restrictions and lack of funds. We get it – life is expensive. But time to reset or spend with family and friends is invaluable and can easily be afforded by making small changes to your everyday habits.
You don’t have to go without to spend less. Budgeting and carving out extra money to set aside for the goal of booking a vacation can be done by being intentional and creative with your daily routine and lifestyle choices. Here are five things you can start implementing today that will help you set that out of office and head to the coast in no time.
Effectively manage your home’s utility usage
There are many ways to save money at home on energy, water and gas bills without turning them off completely or living uncomfortably. You may be surprised at how much of a difference small changes around your house will make.
For example, changing your home’s temperature to be one degree milder can save up to 5% on your monthly bill. Similarly, unplugging appliances when you’re not using them can save them pulling energy when you’re not using them. Appliances left plugged in can pull up to 40% of their normal energy usage even when they’re turned off.
If curbing your utility usage can cut your bill $10-60 per month, you could save $120 to $720 per year. That’s a significant savings toward your next vacation to the coast.
Sign up for credit cards with rewards (and pay them off)
Many credit cards offer valuable rewards for making everyday purchases through their service. Take a look at which benefits make the most difference for your travel budget. Cash back, airline miles, hotel rewards, gift cards or no interest introductory offers can largely affect your travel expenses, so deciding which perks you’ll use most often will maximize the added value (and free money) using a credit card can provide.
It’s important to remember to pay off the expenses you charge to a rewards credit card so you don’t accumulate interest. Compounded interest not only can negatively affect your credit score, but is counterproductive to saving toward a vacation if you’re going into more debt. It’s a smart idea to use a credit card for small, regular purchases you would typically use a debit or bank card for – like gas or utility bills – and then pay off the balance regularly. This will help you consistently earn rewards while buying products or services you’d typically be purchasing anyway.
Audit your subscriptions and memberships
Subscriptions and membership models are such a common occurrence in businesses and services these days that it’s easy to lose track of what you’re paying for on a regular basis. Allot some time to look through your statements and accounts to determine where you have active memberships and subscriptions and decide which are essential. If they’re not? Go ahead and cancel them. $5 a month here and $20 a month there can add up to large yearly savings that could fund a significant portion of your next vacation.
Make coffee at home
At $2-8 per coffee, depending on how extravagant your signature concoction is, stopping by the coffee shop daily can make a big dent in your bank account. If you bought a $5 coffee five days a week, you’d have spent $1,300 a year on your daily pick-me-up. Conversely, a pound of ground coffee from the store typically costs around $13 and will brew about 48 6-ounce cups of coffee. That works out to be about $0.27 per cup. Even if you drink two cups at a time, this is still immensely cheaper than having a barista make it for you daily.
To put it in the big-picture perspective, that’s a savings of $4.50 per day, or $1,170 each year. What could that amount cover on your next vacation?
Squirrel away savings
Putting a portion of your income (no matter how small) to the side after each paycheck can quickly add up to a beach vacation. Set up systems to collect excess change or automatically transfer a little money at a time to a separate account that is set aside for your savings goal can help you carve out a budget for your next travel adventure without you having to put forth much effort at all.
First, try setting aside your spare change in a container each time you find yourself carrying it around. Just before your trip, cash it out and you’ll more than likely have enough to cover a few meals or an experience while you’re away.
Next, you may be able to have your employer automatically transfer a portion of your paycheck into savings each month. Similarly, you can use apps to do this as well. Either way, you won’t have to think about it and you won’t be tempted to spend it out of your checking account before you transfer the money manually. Even saving $1-2 per day adds up to $300-700 set aside each year.
There are many ways to cut down on spending and re-prioritize how your money is being budgeted in order to save for your next vacation. It doesn’t take much effort to make small changes that can add up to large shares to fund an unforgettable experience at Myrtle Beach and Paradise Resort. Let us help you plan your next vacation to the Grand Strand and find even more specials on your stay so that you can make the most of an amazing getaway by the ocean.