How To Set Up A Vacation Budget

We are traveling to spend time with family for Thanksgiving.

If you are preparing to travel for the upcoming holidays then you may need to put pen to paper to make sure you don’t overspend.

As a family of 4, we have historically overspent any time we travel but I have realized that we do much better if I am proactive and put a Vacation Budget in place.

So if you are like us and struggle with budgeting on the road, then I wanted to share with you my top 5 tips for preparing a Vacation budget.

Tip#1: Decide on your budget areas

You can have as many areas as needed for your budget, but I like to try to keep our budget as simple as possible. My vacation budget is broken down into 4 major areas:

1. Transportation: Airline, Airport parking, Uber/Lyft, Rental Car, Gasoline, Tolls, Tips, Misc

2. Lodging: Hotel, Wi-fi, Tips, Hotel Parking, etc. We are staying with family, so I have only added Family Accommodations in this area. I am planning on purchasing a $100 gift card as a thank you.

3. Food / Drink: Restaurants, Coffee, Snacks, Water, Fast food, Groceries

4. Entertainment: Movies, Attractions, Sights, Shopping, etc.

Tip#2: Get A Travel Rewards Credit Card

I have a Southwest Credit Card with Chase. The interest rate is high so I would be extremely careful if you decide to apply for one, but I love being able to purchase our flights with points.

If you are disciplined, travel often, and don’t mind using one airline then this could be the perfect card for you. I was able to get all 4 of our tickets for the trip (a $1200 value) with my Southwest rewards points.

Tip#3: Preplan Outfits

The best way to ensure you don’t overpack and end up paying for a 50-pound suitcase is to preplan outfits.

I love to preplan what I am going to wear, I get several outfits out of a few pieces, and pack my children’s clothing in ziplock bags to keep them organized.

If you want something that will assist you with planning out your travel outfits, here is my Travel Checklist that you can use.

Tip#4: Wear Heavier Clothing to Airport

Many times if I believe my check-in luggage might not pass the weight test, I will take out some of the heavier items and wear them.

Boots or Jackets may also be placed in my carry on to ensure my bag is a little lighter.

Tip#5: Use Cash Envelopes

I love cash envelopes for traveling.

It’s the best way to stay on track. I have 11 envelopes in various categories to help me stay on top of my spending. Each night I will count how much we have and adjust if necessary.

There will be a full video next week on how we spent our travel money. If you want to see how we are doing daily then make sure you follow me on Instagram. I’ll keep you guys updated in my stories.

For the full video on my Vacation Budget setup. Click below.