Get a Budget “Gut Check”
As early as you can, take a budget “gut check” before you pack up the kids and the car. Get a handle on your monthly income and typical expenses, including credit card debt or other loan payments.
Once you have a complete picture of monthly income, expenses and debt, consider how much you can set aside to build up vacation savings.
Automating savings deposits makes it more “painless.” You’ll be able to set it and forget it, by funding the vacation first through automated savings.
Make it a family affair. Set a vacation savings goal with loved ones lets you plan and encourage each other to make that dream vacation a reality.
Closer to the actual vacation date, build a vacation budget. List estimated costs of travel, food, activities, lodging and vacation-related purchases. Be realistic about what you’ll spend – building in a buffer to reduce any potential financial stress.
Finally, give yourself an additional cushion by paring down on credit card debt to ease monthly payments. That way you’ll free up funds for fun!