Knowing the best ways to save for a couples holiday is a hard call to make regardless of whether you’re planning on staying in a 5-star luxury resort or planning on road tripping your way around Australia.
Either way you know it’s going to cost you money, and with those mortgage payments coming out each month, you know that you really need to put a plan into action if you’re going to make it happen!
1.Deciding on a holiday spot
Your first step is to do your research - choose exactly where you and your other half are going to travel to, and for how long, to get a good idea of the best way to save. Decide what tickles your fancy; are you in need of a relaxing beach holiday or do you want to discover a new city? Or perhaps an action packed road trip is on the cards?
2.Choosing your dates
Regardless of the type of holiday you’re looking for, the main advantage of holidaying as a couple is that you can travel outside of school holidays and peak seasons.
You’ll save those pennies, and there’ll be less crowds when you get there!
If you’re considering a relaxing holiday in a popular beach resort, the best way to save is to try for mid-week accommodation. If planning a city break, check out the rates on the weekend. Many hotels in the major cities are far quieter over the weekend and have rooms to fill due to the absence of business travellers, so you may be able to grab a great deal.
3.Consider your flight options
Now you’ve got a destination and dates in mind for your couple's holiday, you may or may not need to factor in your flights.
Get a rough idea of how much your flights will cost you for your chosen destination and for the month that you’re travelling in, and then start keeping an eye out for a good deal.
I admit that I’m a little flight-crazy. I research and compare every airline and travel comparison site to find the best deal possible. For about 5 days straight, I’ll check online morning, noon and night, and also play around with travel dates, in the hope that the price will happen to drop. Be warned, it’s a risky game to play as when you do leave it too long you risk the prices sky rocketing (I’ve been there, done that, and most certainly learned my lesson).
I can’t recommend enough that once you find a good price, book it straight away and don’t hold back.
4.Create a holiday budget
Some holiday expenses (like accommodation and flights) are easier to calculate than others, so, realistically, you will need to give rough estimates in this next step. If it’s a destination you’ve never been to before and you’re not familiar with the cost of things, this could prove to be quite tricky.
HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES AND ATTRACTIONS
List the ‘main activities’ that you want to do while you’re away (such as tours, attractions, adventure sports), and map out the cost of these first. Activities can bump up your original costs quite considerably.
It’s important to do your research when looking for the best ways to save and compare a few options for each of the activities that you want to do. TripAdvisor not only has a price comparison tool, you will also get a good vibe on which tour will give you the best value for your money, whether the tour operators are friendly, what inclusions you can get etc.
Estimate how much you will spend on a daily basis and give yourself a maximum budget per day. Factor in everything you can possibly think of: food, transport, shopping, day spas, other entertainment, entry fees, travel insurance, and let’s not forget those scrumptious cocktails - you are on holiday after all!
YOUR FINAL HOLIDAY BUDGET
If you’ve included all of this information in a list or a table, you’ll end up with a quick snapshot of what you’ll be spending most of your money on whilst you’re away. Ask yourself if there is anything that you can save on or cut down?
For example, buying food and drinks on holiday can quickly add up, even without eating a romantic dinner in a fancy restaurant every night. Does your hotel provide a free breakfast each day or does your resort accommodation have kitchen facilities so you could stock up on some groceries for breakfast or a picnic lunch? Factor these into your choice of accommodation and final holiday cost to save money.
Total up all your holiday costs…is the final number better or worse than you expected?
It’s likely that with all the granular detail, your holiday budget might come as a shock – however, it most definitely is achievable!