For many College graduates Spring Break is often reminisced as reward for their dedication to hard work. It’s also a time that is remembered for not paying enough attention to finances.
Whether you are planning a trip for Spring Break, already on one, or want to be prepared for any vacation, these tips will help you have the most fun without leaving you with a financial hangover.
Out of Sight, Out of Mind – This is easier said than done, but put away the credit cards. You should have a budget set up for how much you are willing to spend on a given day for food, entertainment, lodging, etc. Having cash in hand and being able to see your daily budget will allow you to feel more in control of your expenses. However, always be prepared for an emergency and take a credit card to “save the day”.
Friends Forever? – Have you ever been out with friends to a restaurant and the waiter doesn’t break up the bill? This particular situation can create some awkward tension as now your next five minutes might be spent discussing who should take care of the chili fries – even though you know who ordered the chili fries (Becky). When planning your trip it’s good to avoid such scenario as who is next to pay for gas, who is covering the hotel tonight, etc. Discussing and pooling funds before the trip can eliminate the need to ask and eradicate the awkward silence.
Plane, Train or Automobile– Depending on your end location one method of transportation may be better than another. If you decide to carpool don’t forget to price out the option for renting a vehicle instead of driving your own. One key benefit is not worrying about the additional maintenance cost of the car before or after the trip. Should you be journeying by other means, travel planning sites like Kayak.com or Travelocity offer mobile applications for Smart Phones that will let you set up price alerts, manage your entire vacation from car rental to hotel, and see how far you can travel on a particular budget.
Apps Will Show You The Way – In the mood for local cuisine but not sure which place has the best bang for the buck? There’s an app for that. Yelp utilizes the “power of the people” to help rank eateries and other businesses to assist you in making the most informed decision possible.
When In Rome, Do As The Romans Do – If you are okay with interacting with the local denizens, ask them where you can find the best local things to do, see, or eat for low cost. There is nothing better than finding a place that truly inhabits the aura of the community you are visiting.