As we move towards the end of June, summer is now upon us. You may have preplanned your summer break or you might be looking to take advantage of last-minute offers. Whatever you have planned, how do you make the most of your holiday spending? Before you take flight or go on that luxury cruise, we have a few helpful tips to make your money go even further:
“Summer is very precious.”
Whether you’re an intrepid explorer or a sun worshipper, personalised holidays are on the increase. Nowadays, there are many companies who can create tailor-made excursions for couples and families, and this can be a cost-effective and seamless, worry-free way to go on holiday. Everything is organised for you, removing any stress in terms of transfers and connecting flights. Often such tours include a flavour of everything from cuisine, culture and couture to temples, treks and even tigers!
Here are a few exciting holiday ideas you may not have considered:
• South-East Asia – although Thailand is the number one destination for holidaymakers, there are various travel companies who now provide tours across Vietnam and Cambodia. Suitable for couples and families, there are various beaches, city tours and the famous Angkor Wat temple complex, one of the last Ancient Wonders of the World. The great news is that your money will go a very long way in this area, with a choice of fine restaurants to dine in, various clothing boutiques and superb resort options: standards are very high.
• Africa – if you’ve never seen an elephant, giraffe or a lion in the wild, a safari really is the holiday of a lifetime. Usually, these excursions are all-inclusive, so you will know exactly how much to spend before you step off the plane. Why not brace the hot savanna, brave the beasts and then cool off in an infinity pool facing stunning scenery?
• Central America – fancy visiting coffee plantations, volcanoes and tropical beaches? Costa Rica is a rising holiday destination with direct flights now available from the UK. Travelzoo has some great options for this area and other global destinations.
• Europe – thought about glamping? There are a growing number of luxury camping locations across the continent including tree houses to staying in a yurt. Experience nature in luxurious comfort, and spend your money on sightseeing, fine dining and beautiful ornaments to bring home with you. If camping isn’t for you, then check out Mr and Mrs Smith for boutique resorts and villas.
• UK – our country has so much to offer; stay within our fair isles and you may just be surprised how rewarding a holiday in the UK can be. The main benefits include the fact you won’t have to tackle airport queues or deal with fluctuating exchange rates. There are various exclusive online promotions for luxury hotels and spas available when you sign up with Secret Escapes.
If you’re really organised, you might spread your vacations across the year, say every three months, and have set a budget to account for weekend breaks, mini-breaks and overseas holidays. If you have school-age children, the likelihood is that July and August are going to be your main holiday months. Although holiday companies charge more at this time of year, with some resourcefulness, you can ensure next year’s holiday allows for relaxed spending by planning well ahead.
“Summer means happy times and good sunshine. It means going to the beach, going to
Disneyland, having fun.”
Plan, plan, plan. With sensible financial planning, you can take advantage of holiday promotions, hotel and airline rewards and upgrades, and cheaper flights to faraway destinations. Unfortunately, long gone are the days when you could book last minute flights and recoup some cash – this just isn’t how airfares work nowadays. If you want cheaper flights, you need to book at least three months in advance.
“It will not always be summer; build barns.”
Here are a few useful steps when it comes to planning your holiday spending:
• Step 1 – set a realistic budget and agree on this with your partner or spouse.
• Step 2 – plan your holiday as far in advance as possible to take advantage of exciting offers and promotions.
• Step 3 – use a savings account with a good interest rate or a Cash ISA and set up a standing order to transfer funds into this account every month.
• Step 4 – consider investing; monitor your savings and decide whether you can place a sensible amount into stocks and shares. Your chosen level of risk will affect this investment and we recommend a diverse range of fund options.
• Step 5 – review your ‘holiday cash pot’ throughout the year, so you can either top it up or use it to pay off holiday costs well in advance.
Whether you choose to laze away happily on a tropical beach or you plan to climb a mountain, wise financial planning will allow you to kick back and relax this summer. Why not make your money go that extra mile?
“Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.”