20 Creative Ways to Save Money for Your Next Holiday
Everyone loves to travel and go on holiday but sometimes we think that not everyone can afford to do so. While it’s true that not everyone will be able to pay for a luxurious 5 star all-inclusive two week holiday in the most exclusive resort on a private island (wouldn’t that be the dream?), you don’t have to be a millionaire to travel the world and spend your holiday exactly where you want to. The trick is great budgeting and knowing exactly where you need to cut costs in order to save for your next holiday.
So we’ve put together a list of 20 creative ways that will help you to save money so you can go on the holiday you want time and time again.
1. Set a goal. This is the most important thing you need to keep in mind. You need to know how much you need to save by what date and for what purposes. Calculate your flight, accommodation, food and other expenses and make sure to always save up an extra amount in case of an emergency or a much needed splurge while on holiday.
2. Open a specific savings account. After you’ve set how much you want to save, set up a savings account specifically for your holiday. Then calculate how much of your income can go straight to your next holiday and set up automatic monthly payments to your savings account.
3. Use a change jar. Don’t ignore those bronzies! Save up every penny and dime with a change jar and you’ll be able to stack up a few pounds by the end of every week which will definitely come in handy when you’re travelling!
4. Sell your stuff. Well, not all of your stuff. But definitely take a good look around the items in your home: what do you not use often or at all? From furniture, to old DVDs, clothes or toys – anything is game to sell online. Make sure all your profit goes straight into your holiday savings.
5. Get everyone saving. If you have children and you’re planning to travel with them, you know your expenses will be higher. But you also have more people saving with you! Encourage your kids to save a part of their allowance for their holiday and to cut back on their daily expenses with you.
6. Ask for help. When all else fails, and if you know you have friends or family you can count on, ask for a little help getting funds for your holiday. Create a holiday fund that family and friends can donate to or host a party where guests can contribute with as much as they like to your next adventure.
7. Cut back on eating out. Eating out for lunch and dinner can increase your expenses tremendously. So cut back by brown-bagging your lunch and cooking dinner at home to save for your holiday.
8. Reduce or eliminate your car usage. With gas prices rising, driving around can become a household’s largest expense. So cut back on your car usage by walking, biking or taking public transport to get around your city. What you save can be used to enjoy that nice cocktail on a beach in the Philippines.
9. Use your local library. If you’re a book nerd or a film addict, you can save loads by avoiding book stores and film rentals and paying a visit to your local library instead. You can rent the books and DVDs you want to enjoy without spending a penny!
10. Stay in more often. Going out to restaurants, pubs or nightclubs easily increases your spending bill (especially if you do all of them in one night!). And while you are still allowed to enjoy a night out with your mates, try to stay in more often and you’ll save loads! There are plenty of fun things you can do at home and they will be much cheaper.
11. Do free things. When you do go out, try to look for free things that you can enjoy with your friends and family. A picnic in the park, a visit to a free museum, or a bike ride through the city are all great options. You’ll get to get out of the house, spend time with loved ones and not spend a dime!
12. Use coupons. If you still want to go out and pamper yourself every once in a while, you still can! And you can save while you do it. There are plenty of great coupon websites and campaigns running year round so take advantage of them to, say, treat yourself to a spa treatment for 60% of the price!
13. Buy generic. We all love our brands but when it’s time to save, you know there are things you don’t need to be paying as much for. Nowadays, with generic brands it’s easy to get great value-for-money items that are just as good as branded items but much cheaper.
14. Cancel your gym membership. If you’re a gym rat who needs to get their daily fitness fix every day, maybe this isn’t the best option for you. But if you’re someone who goes to the gym once or twice a week, consider investing in a modest home gym and cancel your gym membership. The £30-£100 that you’re saving every month will definitely come in handy when you’re booking your hotel stay!
15. Do odd jobs. If you’ve got a particular skill set that you think could be useful to your neighbourhood, put up some flyers and start making some money on the side! Anything from babysitting, to snow-plowing or tutoring lessons is game. All profits can go straight into your savings account.
16. Rent out a room. If you’ve got an extra room in your house and you have little use for it, consider renting it out temporarily. This may not be the ideal solution but it’s perfect if you really can’t find more expenses to cut back on and you have limited time or options to make extra money.
17. Travel at the cheapest times. Every budget savvy traveller knows this: off-peak seasons are the best times to travel and go on holiday if you’re looking to save. Loads of places in Europe are cheaper during the off season of September through June and still offer excellent weather for you to discover beautiful cities at bargain prices.
18. Fly indirect. If you really want to cut back on your travel expenses, consider flying indirect to your destination. While it will take you longer to arrive at your destination, you may save an incredible amount of money especially if you’re flying a long-haul.
19. Book alternative accommodation. Another great way to cut travel expenses is to avoid staying at a hotel when you go on holiday. Consider renting out an apartment, staying in a hostel or even camping to make your accommodation as cheap as possible but still comfortable.
20. Eat like a local while you’re away. Avoid the popular touristy spots and eat like a local when you’re on holiday. This means getting out of your hotel or resort and discovering backstreet bistros, corner cafes and hidden restaurants that offer delicious food at more accessible prices.
I’ll admit: these tips can be difficult to follow sometimes. You will often be tempted to splurge on a night out or go on a shopping spree but always remind yourself the reason why you’re saving this money. Put up photos of your holiday destination or set reminders for how much time is left to go – whatever works for you! It will all be worth it in the end.