How to Budget for Your Dream Holiday

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Is there a place you’ve always wanted to visit? Maybe an exotic medieval city in Southern Europe, or a tropical island where coconuts grow in great bunches high up in lush palm trees?

Perhaps you simply haven’t had the time to get away, or maybe you’ve been struggling to justify the expense.

Here’s a look at how you can budget for your dream holiday and finally work towards turning it into a reality.

Keep a record of your income

The first thing to do at the start of any budgeting scheme is to keep a record of your earnings. This can be done in a variety of ways, both paper and digital, but it’s absolutely crucial that you keep a record of how much money you’ve got coming in, so that you can reasonably determine how much you’re able to set aside.

investing in a check stub maker can be one good way of achieving this, as can signing up to a service such as Mint.com.

Cut out the waste in your day-to-day life

If you’re going to begin putting money aside for your dream holiday, you’ll need to free some up first. One of the key ways that this can be accomplished is by looking at the different areas of your life where you frequently spend money, and plugging up the unnecessary “leaks”.

Simply put, these “leaks” are under-the-radar expenses which don’t serve a vital function in your life, can be avoided with a small degree of attention and planning, and which add up to substantial costs over time.

Examples of these leaks could be things like buying a ready-made sandwich from the shop every day on the way to work, instead of making your own. Or paying subscriptions to entertainment services which you rarely if ever use.

Put aside small amounts at a time

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”, goes the saying attributed to Lao Tzu. This turns out to be a great bit of advice for anyone who’s budgeting for a particular event.

If your holiday would cost you a thousand dollars in total, you’d likely find it difficult to pull that money together in any given month. If, however, you started putting a couple of hundred aside in a savings account each month, you could end up with enough for the trip within a few months. That’s without financially crippling yourself in the meantime.

Taking the long view, planning ahead, and saving in small increments is one of the ultimate secrets of turning your dreams into a reality. If you’re not doing it already, you should be.

Research your destination well in advance

Researching the destination you plan to visit is essential in creating an accurate budget for your trip. It does you no good to set aside a certain amount of money for your adventures only to arrive and find that you’ll need to spend far more than you originally thought.

There’s no reason for this to be a painful exercise. Treat it like a game. Spend time searching the web for attractions in the area, read reviews, get a sense of what, specifically, you’d like to get up to and how much it’d cost you.

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