How to Save Money for Your Ultimate Summer Vacation

By Nick Carroll

From the Golden Isles of Georgia to the painted desert sunset at California's Joshua Tree National Park, spending money on vacations can get very expensive. So expensive in fact, that many families push off a big vacation to another year and settling for something to visit somewhere local.   

Below you are going to explore several tips to start saving money for a summer vacation this year while minimizing the impact on your monthly budget. 

  • Start Saving Money Incrementally

  • Discretely Save Money

  • Plan Your Vacation Early

  • Fix Your Funding Shortfall

Start Incrementally Saving

Most budgets and monthly expenditures have waste, meaning one's budget can be reduced more than expected.  Consumers have become accustomed to spending excess or not willing to make sacrifices by limiting their overspending.  

By savings between $45-$75 per week, you can save up to $900-$1,500 by summer. This is where you need to ask yourself if I do not have this much to set aside each week, where can I cut some expenses.  Any easy way to examine your food expenses.  This is usually a large portion of one's household.  

Start by using coupons or switching to store brands and use apps such as ibotta to redeem cash back.  


Blind Your Awareness to Saving 

If you do not have an app like Qapital or Acorns, then you should download it today.  These apps are great to save money quickly and very discreetly so you aren't you're even saving which can lead to significant savings every month.

These apps work by rounding up your purchases to the nearest dollar.  For instance, when I made my grocery purchase last week, the total was $101.34.  Acorns rounded the total to $102.00 which the company took the $0.66 difference and invested it for me.  Last month, Acorns saved me $35, and I never felt a burden of the difference in change being invested. 






Plan Ahead for Traveling

The earlier you start planning for your vacation, the lower the rates for hotels, flights, and deals you can get.  Rather than booking a hotel, try looking into rates with Airbnb.  This online house rental can save you money compared to hotel rates by 20-40%.  

Another reason to plan early is to get an estimated cost for your summer vacation.  When making plans, work backward.  By planning how many days you want to vacation, how long the travel will be, and how many nights of hotel or housing rentals, you can better prepare yourself and your family.  

This will provide insights into what you may need this summer so as you browse the store aisles or online; you may come across deals or savings ahead of time-saving you extra money. 



Finding the Cashflow Gaps

Now that you have created a solid summer vacation plan, you may feel discouraged if you realized you could not save enough to have that dream vacation.  This is where knowing how to find extra cash can come in handy.
There are two excellent online resources are helping make money.  The first is Facebook Marketplace, and the other is eBay.  

By taking a few hours on the weekend, go garage selling.  Take $20-$40 in cash with you and see what deals you can find.  When neighborhoods have garage sales, it is because they are trying to reduce clutter or get rid of things.  That is why most items are super cheap.  You might be surprised to learn that the same elements can sell on these two online platforms for a profit after shipping and seller fees.  

Another great place to purchase affordable goods is at the Goodwill Store.

Once again, these strategies above are for those who may have some struggles in saving money but are terrific ways to ensure you get that dream vacation. 


Establish Auto Deposits


When it comes to saving money, you can easily be tempted to use it during financially unstable weeks.  It is important to stick to your plans and goals because once you touch this money, you are easily tempted again and more likely to use it for other things.  


That's why I recommend you get a separate checking account, a free checking account, to store and save this money.  Do not get an ATM card for this account.  You want to make this as difficult as possible to avoid reaching into it.   One bank I recommend is USAA because they have zero fees for their checkings and this means you save that money compared to other banks who may charge a fee. 





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