We’ve all been there, we’re dying to get away, in need of a much-needed vacation, a chance to truly relax and veg out, but we just don’t know if we can afford that getaway. As much as we love to travel, when it comes down to the financial side of things, all the relaxation and joy can be sucked out of our travel plans if we’re worried about costs, budgets and how we can actually pay for that vacation.
A new survey by Capital One Canada and Credit Canada Debt Solutions found that Canadians tend to worry so much about their financial issues, they often skip out on things like travel in their lives. According to the study, a whopping 44% of Canadians believe that their financial situation has a negative impact on their mental health. That means that they decide to skip out on some of the fun things in life that could actually help their mental health. Twenty-three per cent said they bypass travelling/vacationing and 21% skip eating out to try and remain debt-free. And millennials are the hardest hit by the need to save money and are the most likely to skip out on these extra experiences.
It’s a tricky balance because… the more stress-free we are in other aspects of our lives, the more stress-free we can be about money. A clear mind helps you set those money goals and keep the stress levels low.
Here are some ways we keep on track to make sure we never skip out on a vacation, but also keep our finances stress-free.
Cut out the little things
If you’re like us, we bet you didn’t realize just how much those daily lattes and bi-weekly Uber drives add up. Just cutting back on little daily, weekly and monthly additives can add some serious money to your tropical vacay fund. Using a budget tracker can really help you see where and how you can cut costs to save for that next European jaunt.
Be kind to yourself
Meditating, yoga, eating well — all those healthy things in your life can lead to a more positive mind set when it comes to planning out your finances, especially when it comes to travel. The survey found that Canadians are spending about 7 hours a week worrying! Think about spending that one hour per day as a treat to yourself, whether it’s meditating, listening to music, or setting new goals.
Make a travel budget
It sounds so simple, but even we can attest to not always following a budget, and then having a surprise at the end of the trip. Set aside what you want to spend (allowing for 10-20% extra just in case you go over) and start a spreadsheet to map out your costs. Sticking to it will make you less stressed during and after your trip, so you can truly relax!
Know what you CAN and CANNOT afford
Sure, it’s nice to be in all out luxury, but if you can’t afford it right now, or didn’t save up enough for 7 nights at the Four Seasons in Bora Bora, don’t trick yourself into thinking you can. Be realistic and create a budget based on your income. You can always find ways to splurge within your means. For example, 7 nights at the Four Seasons might be a pinch, but 5 or 6 nights at an AirBnB could save you loads, and then splurge on the last night or two in fancy digs.
*This post was sponsored by Capital One Canada. All views are that of Travel & Style Magazine. To learn more about this year’s Credit Education Week or to find a #MoneyMindfulness activity near you, please visit cewc.ca.