For phones, we paid for one monthly SIM card that included unlimited internet and another rechargeable SIM that we used for phone calls. Read more about using your cell phone here. We had planned on traveling to our church meetings in various places at least once a week, so our transportation costs are a bit high for someone who may just stay in one area. Sometimes we paid for small things for our friends like a meal or a bus ride, so we tracked that as a charity.
We bought a year of health insurance before we left, but figured we need to track it with our expenses as well. This budget is more geared to traveling because hostels are quite and we plan on riding a lot of buses to move around some pretty big countries. We updated our budget with our actual flights, so those are exact numbers.
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Since our trip is 3 months long, I divided by 3 to get an idea of the monthly cost and then by 30 for a daily cost. The Activities and Entertainment is high because we plan on taking some tours that will be relatively pricey. We have a rental house in the US, so we have a small drain on our bank account that we need to account for. If you have a rental property, your costs will vary depending on your exact situation.
At last, we figured we had a pretty good budget that was conservative in every way possible. We knew that we would figure something out before then, but a year seemed to be a good conservative plan. We had allocated a 6 month safety fund, 2 plane tickets back home, 1 year of living expenses in Costa Rica, 3 months of vacation in South America, and 1 year, 3 months of US expenses — all for two people.
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Remember, this is a worst-case scenario without working at all, and is not likely. The safety fund was a pretty big chunk of our savings and that is still safe and sound. It was a pretty good feeling to have it all laid out so we could convince ourselves at last that we would have enough money to be able to explore another part of the world and go on this trip of a lifetime. We made it a point to save as much as possible for the past 4 years so we could take a trip like this and not dig ourselves into a hole of debt. Those are for later on in life.
Why do we think a better vacation will be had if we go to a faraway, exotic location? There are beautiful and fun areas and spots everywhere I think, no? I agree with you Kurt.
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I have a lot of fun getting away from technology and enjoying a great hiking trip. It costs very little and I just enjoy it. Back in October, we took a little 3 day mini-vacation and our destination was only a 2 hour drive away. We saved up for it and paid cash. There is no way that we would put anything on a credit card, especially as we are trying to pay it off.
That is exactly how you should do it Mackenzie. I think it depends of the debt that you carry. It does depend on your debt, but you should never borrow to go on a vacation, no matter what debt you carry. You and your spot on photo nailed it. Vacations are necessary to relieve stress or celebrate milestones along the debt-free journey. Probably the wrong idea…. We did that halfway through our credit card debt payoff. However, you can never put it on the credit card. With my office, I have always gotten tons of reward points,so we used those and money from Ebay sales, and we had a strict daily allowance of what we were willing to spend.
It was a road trip. We could have paid that toward the debt and been done a month earlier maybe, but I think sometimes you need to refresh. I definitely would not put it on a credit card unless I can pay it off in full att the end of the month. Debt-Cation that is brilliant, Grayson. I did a vacation this way once loading up all my credit cards to go to a convention out in LA and I can tell I will never do that again. Instead we might do a small weekend getaway with the kids and go to the zoo.
My wife and I went on a staycation last year and used our vacation fund to pay off her car. Sounds weird, but working from home, if your job allows you to do so, can be a stay cation of sorts. I find that just being out of the office sometimes and working from home can be a nice break from the routine.
I should be debt-free except the mortgage in two years. I agree there Jen. There are times when I get to work from home and it feels like a little vacation. Thanks for stopping by! If we had credit cards with balances and lines of credits we would not be going anywhere but our backyard, day trips, free entertainment in the city, the beach, hiking etc.
I am in the same boat as you Mr. I had to make sacrifices and costly vacations were one of them. They swear by it but it comes with obvious risks! I am not painting with a broad brush. The article is speaking to expensive vacations. There are many ways to have a great vacation for little money. They might not be as extravagant, but they are just as effective. I think it is crazy to spend thousands on a vacation when you owe thousands in debt. I think everyone should enjoy a vacation, but you should think about what kind of vacation you are going to take.
This topic is definitely one of the most challenging for me. We also really love to travel. Right now is our time together before we have children, so even though we have this student loan debt looming, we still go on them. The way I justify it in my Type A budgeting brain is that we only go on vacation with money I make on the side and use my paychecks to pay off some of this loan strategically to make it easier for us on the other side.
That is a great way to handle it Cat. They pull out the plastic and just ring it up.
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They only see the minimum payment of their debt and not the whole picture. I think you have it under control. While I was paying off my huge mountain of debt, whenever I would take trips I had rules. It would have to be paid in cash and funded with money from extra income and not from my primary paycheque. Great job keeping strong K. I know that I can be hard, but you are always still responsible when you get home from vacation. I think people should be able to take vacations, but use a wise budget.
So, it has always been simple for me. I have been responsible for too long and i am not getting any younger. Debt will still be there when i get back and when i am dead. If i come into an amount of money that is large enough to go on a vacation over seas or mini vacations in the USA then i am going to do it. I pay for my travel expenses with a credit card, yes, but I also pay those credit cards off every month, in FULL!
I went camping and on small trips. Please read more before you post stuff like this making yourself sound like an idiot. Your email address will not be published. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Leave this field empty.
This information should not be construed as professional advice. Please seek a certified professional financial advisor if you need assistance.
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