Money can’t buy happiness (or so “they” say), but it can buy travel, and that is pretty much the same thing. The trouble is during the pursuit of happiness (ie: travel), for the normal everyday aspiring billionaire, there is a whole heap of ‘unhappy’ (ie: hard work) that must first be endured and earnt before reaching that Garden of Eden. It’s the idea of delayed gratification, working, saving, working saving, with the hope that sooner rather than later we find ourselves ready to book that elusive airline ticket.
Inspired by several questions of late from very loyal Instagram followers, I’ve brainstormed a list of five simple money saving tips that may help turn that dream trip into a reality.
- Request your employer to deliberately withhold an additional $20-$40 tax per week from your income. Come end of financial year, (assuming payroll has taxed you correctly), money for an international airfare should be ready and waiting. (Disclaimer: This taxation option is relevant to Australia, but may be worth researching the tax regulations for your country of residence for similar options).
- Accumulate award credit card points by paying all bills and expenses where possible on your credit card. At the end of each month transfer your income to your credit card, thus ensuring you are not living on credit. By the end of the year you should have sufficient points for yet another international airline ticket.
- Save all dollar coins ($1 & $2) in a money tin/box that cannot be opened unless broken. It’s amazing how quickly this all adds up, and an amazing insight into how much one actually spends in ‘coin’ without realising it.
- Layby. The day I discovered that a reputable Australian Travel Agent, accepting 9-12 month laybys on flights and accommodation actually exists, I thought all my Christmases had come at once. The Layby-commitment is a brilliant accountability measure to ensure that your tomorrow’s plans become yesterday’s reality. Paying what you can afford, weekly, fortnightly or monthly, with approximately ten months to achieve the goal. This secures your accommodation and airline tickets immediately, thus avoiding missing out on a great deal. It is not credit, as no finance is involved and no interest charged at all. Essentially, it is a forced saving, and yet is very different than a savings account, how so you ask? Frankly stated, for those of us that are human and flawed, we’ve dipped into our savings when something has happened, or on an impulse finding something we simply cannot live without. Layby removes this possibility. This really is ‘have your cake and eat it’ stuff. So, who is this travel agent you ask? STA Travel (and no I’m not sponsored or endorsed in any way by mentioning them…much to my dismay).
- You’re awarded a pay rise, woo hoo! Time to celebrate and spend. No, not so! Time to celebrate, and plan your dream, forever talked about trip. If possible and affordable, save the portion of income that is your pay rise, and watch the ticks appear on your bucket list as you realise your travel dreams sooner.
I hope this helps. Feel free to add your own tips below or find me on Instagram @lostandfoundtraveller to share your savings suggestions there.
Disclaimer: Many thanks for taking the time to read this savings suggestion list, with particular emphasis on the word suggestion. As prefaced, several questions on Instagram were raised, such as “how do I manage to travel so often, what money saving tips do I use”. Etc. The above five are merely to provide food for thought, as I aspire to inspire, so that you may be one step closer to the destinations you dream of.