Is your New Year’s Resolution to travel more in 2016? Do you have a few new places you’re hoping to visit (I sure do!) but aren’t sure how you can make it happen? Here are a few ideas & tips to help you reach your goal.
1. Start Small
It can be really overwhelming to think about planning a trip to Bora Bora with a $2,000 plane ticket just to get things started. Instead, start with baby steps. Think about what is in a 5 hour drives distance or a train ride away if you’re in a large city. There have to be new, fun places you haven’t seen that you can get to quickly and very cheaply (especially with the current low gas prices).
2. Be Open to Possibilities
You’d be surprised how many wonderful places there are in the world that might not be on your radar. If you would have asked a few years ago, most people didn’t care a bit about Nashville and Iceland seemed like a crazy idea – but more and more people are visiting these places every day! Check Skyscanner.com, put in your location, and then type “everywhere” and for the date check “cheapest month” – this will give you a list of options. Similarlly, if you have a specific location but no date, search that location and leave the dates open ended. You may be surprised what you find!
3. Make a Travel Budget (and stick to it!)
You don’t have to be a millionaire to travel – when I was making $23,000/year (that’s about $11/hr) I was traveling almost monthly. I had a car payment, student loans, rent, and everything else you have to pay for in life. The difference was that I prioritized travel. I was saving at least $200/month for travel even on my meager wages. Now, you might not have an extra $200, but I KNOW you have an extra $50 (or more!) somewhere each month. You can eat out two times less per month, skip fancy coffee a few times, meal plan to maximize your grocery budget…. but you’d be surprised where money is hiding. It’s just a matter of making it a priority.
I found this great 52 week money saving challenge posted below. If you stick to this only, you’ll have almost $1400 saved. If you throw an extra $20 in here and there, you’ll pay for your trip in no time.
4. Skimp Where You Can
When you’re budgeting for a trip, think about what you can skip and what’s worth it. Traveling isn’t all about luxury resorts and Michelin rated restaurants. Spend money on what’s important to you. If you can book an Airbnb with a refrigerator and a kitchen, you can cook a few meals in so the meals you eat out are really special! Scope out a few great restaurants and sights that are totally worth your hard earned cash – and do those things. You don’t have to do it all or spend hundreds on a trip to fully experience a city and have a good time. Some of my favorite trips have been well planned and on a limited budget!
5. Start Planning NOW!
Don’t wait until you have the money saved or the dates booked… start making a plan now! If you start planning now, you’ll be on that plane in no time. You can absolutely travel more than you think you can – if you’re strategic 🙂
So…. what are you waiting for? Start planning! Make your New Year’s Resolution of traveling more happen. Let me know if I can help you make it happen!