For many people, summertime means vacation time. But with travel, lodging, and other expenses, a big trip isn’t an option for everyone. The good news is that doesn’t mean you can’t have a fun, affordable getaway this summer. More and more people are choosing to take staycations—inexpensive local vacations or daytrips. These more affordable outings allow you to enjoy the summer while staying out of debt and on track to meet your financial goals, whether that’s to get out of debt or to buy a home.
If a staycation sounds right for you, here’s how to plan one for yourself!
Find Local Attractions and Activities
Some people might wonder how they can have a vacation without going somewhere new. But you might be surprised by the opportunities waiting to be explored in your own neighborhood or city. Maybe it’s a museum you’ve never visited or a local attraction your city is known for that you’ve never made time to visit. And the local beach or lake is a great site for picnics, swimming, and star-gazing.
If you choose an outdoor location, you could even take an overnight camping trip. Many people drive for hours to get to a well-known national park, but you might have a stunning view just a few minutes away. If you’re planning a staycation for a group or your family, come up with a few options for attractions and activities, and you’re bound to find something to keep everyone entertained.
Save the Date
Although a staycation takes less preparation than a long trip, a little planning can make it run much smoother. If you can plan your staycation for a weekday, it should also mean less crowds and traffic. If needed, check to see if you can get the day off work.
It’s also a good idea to check the attractions or locations you’d like to visit to make sure they are open that day. You might even find a discounted day to take advantage of.
Plan the Little Things
Whether you’re staying in town or going on a big trip, it’s easy to forget about all the little expenses that add up during a vacation. This is another area where a little planning will go a long way to helping you stay on budget. For example, you should check to see if the attraction you’re visiting has free parking or if it makes more sense to take public transportation.
Wherever you go on your staycation, the costs of food and drinks can become a big expense. That’s why it’s a good idea to pack snacks, lunch, and a cooler full of drinks. This can save you from marked-up prices and—if you have kids—hunger meltdowns. To make the day extra special, pack some treats your kids (or you!) don’t usually get.
While not everyone can afford an extravagant trip or luxury resort, you can still make great memories and have fun on a budget. Use these tips to plan a summer staycation that won’t break the bank.
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*Although we hope these tips are helpful to you, Midland Credit Management does not offer financial advice. If you have questions or concerns about your personal finances, please speak to a financial advisor.