Dollars & Sense: Staycation… To Stay or Not To Stay

On top of dreaming about all the things I can achieve over my summer vacation, I am also looking ahead to the vacation I have booked off work and all the wonderful possibilities of where we could go. With all these ideas and thoughts… and travel costs, I really must look at what is most significant to me and how can I be most cost effective?
First, look at the actual time you have, if you are travelling distances with a lot of plans, your vacation money can be used up quickly with little return on investment.
Do your research, what will the weather forecast be? What are the options if you get rained out? Indoor activities can cost a lot more than enjoying the many beaches and parks. What are the options for free activities? Are there coupons you can pre-print or pre-purchase to stretch your vacation dollar further?
Limited lodging can add up quickly on the cost of your vacation. Looking at sites that compare cost and accommodation before you go can help determine where you will go on your trip. If it is a popular spot and a long weekend you could be paying a premium, where travelling during the week may save you in the long run. Also, the more accommodation available, likely will be more cost competitive.
Some of the biggest costs are the money gobblers in travel. Think about all the stops that you make, the gum, the pop, the water, the lunches, the snacks… these costs add up quickly and eat away at your budget. Having a cooler with snacks, sandwiches and water can save you upwards of $40 to $100 just on a simple road trip. It may seem like a lot of preparation, but you will reap the benefits of not standing in line for food, while keeping your cash in your wallet.
The real way to save on costs and still have a great summer vacation whether you stay close to home or not is to plan, research, and prepare. If you have a budget, allocate cash to certain expenses, that way you will more aware of what you are spending for food, tickets and incidentals. On our website at you can find budget trackers to help.
Most of all, enjoy your summer vacation, money-worry free.