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Planning for Wonderful Holidays on a Budget

Everybody needs a holiday now and then, but many of us struggle to afford them. Even so-called "budget holidays" can cost several hundreds of dollars, making it difficult for many of us to get away.

Despite the cost, holidays are more important than ever in today’s hectic world. The ability to get away from work, financial stress, family problems and other concerns is vital to your mental and physical health; it raises your general level of happiness. Everybody in the family needs rest and relaxation these days, even the kids.

Fortunately, it is possible for any family to enjoy a fun holiday at a low cost. There are many activities that will not strain your budget including put-put golf, the beach, hiking, camping and ten-pin bowling. If you’re looking for a holiday adventure a bit closer to home, you can also check out Mid-North Coast Holiday destinations.



Effective Planning is Key

The key to planning an affordable holiday is an effective budget. In fact, the basis of all successful budgeting is good planning.

So your first step should be to sit down as a family and decide where you want to go and what you want to do. Discuss where you want to stay, what activities you want to participate in, and how long you will be gone. Let everybody, including the kids, make suggestions and then make a decision as a family.

When you have this information you can start saving and budgeting for your vacation. A good rule of thumb is to total the costs and add extra dollars for unforeseen expenses eg 10% extra. Keep this final figure in mind as it will become your holiday savings goal.



How to Reduce Holiday Costs

There are many ways to reduce holiday costs: including booking trips or rooms in the offseason, driving instead of flying, using Airbnb instead of a hotel, or even camping out.

Another way to save is to shop around for last minute packages at sites like wotif.com, booking.com or lastminute.com.au. Also avoid dining at restaurants that are outside of your budgeted price range but ensure that you try some of the local cuisine.



Holiday Coast Can Help

Holiday Coast Credit Union’s Budget Planner and Savings Plan Simulator tools can help you make your getaway plans a reality.

The Budget Planner will help you keep your finances and spending under control. The Savings Plan Simulator will show you how long it will take you to accumulate the funds you need for the trip. It will also show you how much you have to put away each week, fortnight or month to achieve your savings goal.

The Holiday Coast savings accounts, such as the i-Saver Savings Account, Percentage Plus, Great Day Bonus Saver or Great Day Offset, are very useful. Our online banking features allow you to automatically put a percentage of your salary into the savings accounts each payday, which greatly assists your efforts to achieve that savings goal.

To set up an account, simply call Holiday Coast at 1300 365 7 24, email www.ubelong.com.au or drop by one of our branches and have one of our friendly staff personally assist you to create your savings plan and account.

 

This article provides general information only and should not be relied upon as financial product advice.

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