So anyone who has done a bit of travelling (or who has at least done a bit of research) knows that travel is expensive. Sure, you can get a few [last minute] deals here and there and a few sites exist to help you find loopholes for flight booking errors and price comparisons, but overall, travel is pretty damn expensive! My trip to Turkey last April cost nearly $3400 all expenses in! So how does one afford a trip away from time to time on their own pocket change? Here’s what I recommend.
Aside from tracking your expenses and managing your money as efficiently as possible (you can read my previous post about budget tracking here), starting a travel fund is my best recommendation. I started one last year and it delights me each month to see my savings grow. It’s a good way to save up little by little as you move towards the big picture (a trip!). Allocate a set amount of money from each pay check (or each month) into a separate account that is intended specifically for travel. Make sure you’ve got your priorities in check first (emergency fund, TFSA or RRSP are ideal) then figure out a reasonable amount to be deducted from your account and deposited into your ‘travel daydreaming’ account. This can usually be arranged directly with your bank so that you don’t accidently spend it or forget to move the funds over. Over time (a year or more, depending on how much you are able to save), you will have a nice chunk of change to go towards your next adventure! It’s one small step towards managing your wanderlust (and you can of course still seek out ideas and plan while you save too).
Not everything is out of reach. With a little research and some advance planning (understanding estimated costs, timing the purchase of your flights, booking dates that will be off-peak/season, etc.), you’ll be on your way in no time. If you really want to go to a destination, then it’ll be worth the wait (and you’ll appreciate the experience more too because you had to earn those dollars). And be smart about opportunities that arise when you’re not expecting them – be open to changing your next destination. If funds allow and the timing is right, jump at it! Happy travels!
I'm a 20-something woman working my way through life in Canada, traveling when I can afford it and seeking out my passions one day at a time.