When the worst of winter hits and you are stuck indoors, daydreams turn to warmer months and your summer plans. While you're daydreaming anyway, you might as well put your imagination to use and get a head start on your summer savings plan.
Why Wait? – There is really no use in waiting until summer hits before you have a plan together. In fact, the sooner you start, the more likely you are to successfully save up enough for your summer plans.
Savings Now Means More Fun Then
If you can put your mind and your spending to work for you now, you are more likely to have enough savings put back to use towards your summer plans. There are many ways you can save money now to put towards your summer fun budget:
- More indoor fun – Whether you have a big family or it is just you, you can save money by finding fun and enriching indoor activities. For example instead of going to the movies, stay in with a rental and your own popcorn. You might enjoy the movie more on your own comfortable sofa without the worry of noisy movie-goers and overpriced snacks.
- Affordable meals – Wintertime is a great time for hearty, warm, and filling meals that are also inexpensive. Homemade soups and hot casseroles are not only comfort food, but they are also very affordable, especially when compared with the cost of going out to eat.
- Energy savings – You can save a surprising amount of money with some simple insulation around your windows, curtains, and clean vents. Also, keeping your thermostat programmed to just a couple degrees lower is barely noticeable and puts money back in your pocket.
- Health savings – To avoid costly physician's visits and prescriptions, save money by staying healthy. Eat healthy, exercise daily, and fortify your immune system with antioxidants and vitamins like C and D.
Take the Time to Research
While you are stuck inside daydreaming, put your mind to work actually researching potential vacation spots. The time you spend researching can help you find great deals and money-saving packages. Not only that, but booking your vacation and certain activities ahead of time can often save you extra money as well. I like to check Groupon for deals especially if I know what kind of activities we are looking for.
Build a Strong Budget
As you are researching, plan out a budget for everything you need and want during your planned vacation. Build a budget that includes all accommodations including where and how long you will stay, travel costs, meal planning, and extra spending money. It also wouldn't hurt to include some emergency funds in the event that something goes wrong or you need more money quickly.
Don't forget to grab the 52 week savings plan printable, you'll be on your way to saving over $1000 in a year!
Write It Out
Make a spreadsheet and write out everything, making changes along the way – I like using Office365 because you can save it in your OneDrive and share it with others and you can all make adjustments as necessary on the same document. For a free option check out GoogleDrive.
Writing everything out will help you build a stronger budget and avoid missing anything important. Seeing the visible proof of your upcoming fun can also bring a smile to your face when the winter weather is pulling you down.
With the right planning, you can put together a strong and successful summer vacation plan.
Using the extra time you have stuck indoors this winter gives you the perfect opportunity to put it all together.