Sometimes we all need a break from the stresses and strains of day-to-day living.
Holidays can be a great way to relax, unwind and reconnect with loved ones … but they can also be expensive. When planning a holiday, it’s important to save and budget appropriately. After all, there’s little point unwinding on holiday if you’re just going to return home to the stress of big debts!
Invest in a savings account
Whatever you’re saving for, it always pays to plan for the future and make the best of your money. This means doing a bit of research and putting your money in a savings account or other scheme that will provide the best return.
In general, savings accounts which require you to give notice before making a withdrawal offer better rates of interest than easy or instant access accounts. You will obviously need to access your money before you set out however, so for any kind of notice or fixed term account you should make sure the term ends before you need to make your withdrawal.
If you are planning on taking a substantial amount of foreign cash as spending money then give yourself time to find the best deal on currency. Leaving it until the last minute and changing cash at the airport usually results in some of the worst exchange rates and might wipe out the interest you’ve just earned.
Consider all costs
Where holidays are concerned, it’s important to stay within your means and budget effectively. Remember that it’s not just the cost of transport and accommodation you have to allow for but also spending money and other potential costs such as airport parking and kennel fees for any pets staying behind.
All the usual bills and outgoings such as rent or mortgage payments will still have to be paid too. If you are self-employed or otherwise don’t qualify for paid leave from your employment then you will have to consider how this will affect your finances and holiday budget.
Get in early
Booking your accommodation, flights or package holidays in advance can result in more competitive prices but so can taking advantage of last minute deals. Whenever you decide to book your holiday, saving for it should be started as early as possible.
The sooner you start saving the more time you’ll have to reach your target figure so your day-to-day spending won’t be affected as drastically. A recent report by ABTA revealed holidays are top of consumers’ spending agendas with 19% of Brits admitting they expect to spend more on travel in 2014. This means saving early could be the only way to afford our much-needed breaks.
Split the costs
Depending on how you book your holiday, you may have the opportunity to pay deposits on the whole thing or on separate components via installments. Alternatively, the full balance may be payable at a later date so you can delay payment until you’ve had chance to save up.