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5 Stress-Saving Tips for a Thrifty Vacation

Mar 29, 2016

The first few weeks of spring have many people itching to get away and shake off those winter blues. Whether it's a summer trip to the beach or a short weekend excursion to your favorite fishing spot, vacations have a way of easing the tension of everyday life.

But how do you get away from the stress, if you're stressing out about money? There are plenty of ways to fulfill your vacation needs responsibly, and still experience the recreation you deserve. Here are five tips to help you take your next trip without breaking the bank:

  1. BYOB (Bring Your Own Belongings) A common trap for unsuspecting tourists can be the inflated prices of food, supplies and other expenses you may not immediately think of once you reach your destination. If you can, think of bringing items you can purchase at home for a more reasonable price. This can include snacks for the road, or toiletries that you'll end up needing later.
  2. Explore your own backyard. Not every trip requires purchasing expensive airfare or a pricey hotel room. For Philadelphians on a budget, there are several low-cost vacation options that are just a couple hours away. Consider a camping trip up to the Poconos with family and friends, or a short drive to the nearby Jersey Shore where many of the beaches are free and open to the public. If it's just a little bit of relaxation you're looking for, you'd be surprised how enjoyable your local hotspots can be.
  3. Look out for vacation packages. If you're really looking for a destination trip, diligent research on travel websites can uncover economical flight, hotel and rental car packages. More often than not, the bundle will be much cheaper than if you were to book each separately. Just make sure you read the fine print, and talk with someone to uncover the full details of the package's true offerings.
  4. Consider last-minute deals. Both hotel prices and airline tickets have been known to drop significantly in price to avoid vacancies and empty seats. If you're feeling spontaneous, you might be able to book a last-minute trip within a couple days of takeoff. Note: this option is for those with more flexibility. If you're planning something more long-term, this can be very risky and you're better off booking months in advance to ensure your reservation.
  5. Begin contributing to a dedicated savings account. The summer is still months away and there's plenty of time to put away funds for your next getaway. A PFCU Vacation Savings Account is available to anyone who meets membership requirements. Because the funds are separate from your regular savings account, you'll be less tempted to spend the money on non-travel expenses. Interested in learning how to automatically contribute portions of your weekly paycheck to a vacation savings account? You can reach a PFCU representative at 215-934-3500 or 800-832-PFCU (for callers outside the metropolitan area), and learn more today.

Everyone deserves a little R&R. When planning your next trip, be sure to consider these options for a relaxing and stress-free vacation.

Erin Ellis
Erin Ellis

Accredited Financial Counselor
Philadelphia Federal Credit Union

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