financial preparation

How to Prepare Financially for a Road Trip

Everyone looks forward to a holiday; it offers the chance to step away from the monotony of daily living and get a fresh breath of something new and exciting. This especially rings true for Australians. In fact, according to one report, Australians on average spend more money on trips than anyone else in the world, and all of that travel can really end up eating away at the bank account. A big budget allows travellers to see some of the most amazing things the world has to offer. However, is it worth the stress and worry that may come after the traveller returns home and realises how much debt they are in?

An important part of making any holiday more enjoyable is proper financial preparation. The following are ways that Australians can save money on trips, especially road trips. Some of these tips will require more effort than others, but all will make the overall experience a bit less stressful.

Planning your financial needs

Properly managing your finances on a trip begins before you even decide where to go. Sit down and determine what your budget is capable of. Narrow down your choices to the ones you can really afford, even though they may not be the ones you have always dreamed of. If you are constantly worried about debt and spending too much, you won’t enjoy the trip anyway.

Once you have the overall cost figured out, break the trip up into subcategories and determine how much you will need to spend on each activity. Start with the big items, such as transportation and accommodation, and then move your way down to smaller expenses like snacks or miscellaneous spending. You may have to adjust your overall budget when you think through everything, but this will help you make sure you don’t forget something important.

Saving money before the trip

Once you know how much you will need for a successful trip, it’s time to either set aside that money or start saving. There are many ways to do this, but creating a savings plan and constantly referring back to your goal will likely be the most effective. For example, save the number of your target amount as the background to your desktop or mobile device. That way, when you are tempted to make online purchases, you will be reminded that it may hinder you from reaching your goal. If you find that you have difficulty saving money, consider investing in some budgeting software. Software can help you countdown to your goals and avoid activities that will prevent you from saving.

Saving on transportation

Many road trippers choose to rent a car instead of using their own. The following tips will help you find the best deal:

Saving money during the trip

How to spend

Travellers have different theories on what payment methods help them reduce spending. While there may not be one perfect method, the important thing to remember is variety. Don’t dedicate yourself to one form of money, but instead carry it in several different ways in several different forms. If you carry all the money for your trip as cash in your wallet, and somehow your wallet is lost or stolen, you could very quickly find yourself in a difficult situation. While most ATM’s are reliable, you never know when one might break or run out of cash.

Therefore, it’s always smart to carry some cash, but never too much. Ultimately, if you have planned and budgeted well, the type of money you carry will not be the determining factor in your overall expenses.


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