I’m going to share some groundbreaking news today. You don’t have to be wealthy to go on a dream vacation. But you do need to be an advance planner and willing to make a few sacrifices. Here’s how you can do it.
Many years ago, I saw this meme on Facebook. While it was largely meant for comic relief, it struck a chord in me. That was the day I decided to prioritize travel over luxuries like eating out, shopping sprees, and expensive outings with friends. Instead, I began planning trips far enough in advance to make a small deposit and faithfully save up the rest for the final payment due date.
This plan can work for any type of vacation. As an example, I will use a December 2023 Walt Disney World vacation. Most of my clients are middle-class families who are limited to traveling over school holidays. Though there are many variables, the average cost of a Walt Disney World vacation for a family of four is $5,000. Below is a comparison of a moderate and value vacation package.
Quite an investment, right?! Let’s break it down into manageable bits and pieces.
I’ve seen numerous savings goal charts with complex formulas that make my head spin. But I prefer to keep things simple. Divide $5,000 by your payroll frequency:
- If you are paid weekly, the formula is $5,000/52 = $96.15 a week.
- If you are paid bi-weekly, the formula is $5,000/26 = $192.31 every two weeks.
- If you are paid monthly, the formula is $5000/12 = $416.67 a month.
I know some people who use the envelope system in which they stuff $100 into an envelope every week and end the year with a bonus $200. Easy, right?!
Now instead of using envelopes, here are a couple suggestions:
- Open a vacation savings account and have your savings goal automatically transferred. It’s easier than you think and you won’t miss what you don’t see.
- Join an asue with trusted family/friends/coworkers. This is still common practice within the African diaspora.
- If given the choice, have loved ones contribute to your vacation savings in lieu of special occasion gifts.
Will this plan work for everyone? No. It is of utmost importance to understand that your vacation savings are coming out of your disposable income. You should not be going into debt to save this cash.
Who will this plan work for? Those willing to lock in their vacation a year in advance, and are prepared to keep their eye on the prize and stay the course, even when it gets hard.
So what do you think? Are you up for the challenge?
As a full-service travel agent, I would love to be of assistance to you. I am passionate about what I do and pour that energy into crafting perfectly planned itineraries for you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.