Daydreams of sunny skies and sandy beaches have you thinking about the cost of a vacation, but it doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to save when you’re taking a trip. Before you pack your sunblock and the money you’ve been saving for a rainy day, learn how to save money on vacation.
Pay with Cash
Relying primarily on cash for the majority of your vacation spending will help minimize your credit card debt – as well as encourage you to think twice before shelling out some dough. A study by the Journal of Experimental Psychology reveals that consumers who pay with cash likely to spend less than if you pay by credit card. Physically seeing the money leaving your wallet gives you pause and makes you more likely to scrutinize purchases and only buy what you really want or need.
Set a Credit Card Limit
Avoid excessive charges to your credit card by giving yourself a credit card limit. Some purchases are best to put on plastic, giving you protection against fraud or loss with expensive items or goodies you are planning to ship home. However, while you should enjoy yourself on vacation, splurging on expensive dinners, entertainment and souvenirs can equal high credit card debt. Before you leave home, create a spending limit that allows you to make purchases without running up your balance. The extra debt will raise your credit utilization ratio which could in turn lower your credit score.
Pay Bills Before You Leave Home
While relaxing on your vacation, you may be unknowingly blowing your vacation budget back home. By paying your bills before you leave, such as your student loan or mortgage payment, will help you avoid coming home to the damaging effect late payments, so pay your bills early or set up automatic payments.
These tips on how to save money on a vacation can help you avoid high debt, but before you book your holiday, review your finances to determine whether or not it is in your immediate budget. You may be better off starting a vacation fund and saving towards a big trip down the road. Although there are plenty of ways to save on your getaway, working towards your vacation goal may make your trip a little sweeter in the long run.