There are so many way to save money when it comes to holidays so I have just included a few of the best ones in this section. The most important one for me though is to be realistic about your budget. The 5* instagram worthy holiday is always going to be appealing, but if it derails your financial goals, is it really worth it? It’s also important to remember just because your friends are doing it, doesn’t mean you have to.
A holiday saving story
I recently sat down with a potential new client – a couple in their late 30s who had three kids at a private school. They were adamant that they wanted to maintain their lifestyle of holidaying with friends. Skiing in the February half term and luxury meandering in the summer.
This was all lovely but they were in debt, and weren’t progressing on a year to year basis even though they were earning more each year. When I suggested that holidays should be cut back on their thoughts were “if everyone else is doing it, I don’t see why we shouldn’t”.
It’s no surprise that these people couldn’t become clients, although they were earning really well, they just had no assets for me to manage and no disposable income to save. A serious case of living extreme hand to mouth! Sadly I have a feeling that they will really regret their decisions when they come to retirement and holidaying will be a thing of the past!
It’s important to have your holiday budget in your diary as realistic as possible so that you are well prepared financially for holiday but also that it isn’t at the expense of your financial goals. Look at what you have put in the diary and consider the following:
- If you look back at previous years, have you spent more or less than this figure
- Have you forgotten to include weekends away?
- With some clever planning in advance, would you be able to save 10% on the cost of your holiday? What could you do to have the same standard of holiday for less?
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Top tips on saving money while on holiday
Here are a few of my favourite tips for saving your money once you’re ready to tak your holiday.
- Credit cards can add a fortune on to your purchase in fees – 3% isn’t uncommon when abroad, so make sure that you shop around for a card that downs charge you extra to make purchases abroad. I have sued the Halifax Clarity card in the past, but still shop around because it might not be the best by the time that you read this.
- Most credit cards will usually charge you if you use them to take cash out at an ATM so you need another way to be able to access cash. The solution I use is a preloaded foreign exchange card. They are really easy to use – just like a regular bank card. But you can pre-buy foreign currency and load it on to the card. Take a look at Revolut & Fair FX –there are loads out there.
- Buy your insurance when you book a holiday and if you holiday more than once per year perhaps consider having an annual policy. Read the small print to make sure that you have cancellation cover so if you can’t go due to ill heath then you can get a refund.
- Have an European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if you are travelling to Europe. This will allow you to get free or reduced cost healthcare. But it is no substitute for an insurance – you do need both. However there are loads of companies out there who will arrange it for you without a fee. You really don’t need to do pay for this service. They are so easy to apply for and really don’t take long for them to come through.
- If you want to treat yourself, perhaps consider a lounge. If you book far enough in advance you can get access for as little as £20 and this will usually include food, drink and some newspapers/magazines. When I booked one recently we even got free fast track passes through security which was a nice surprise!
- Although you can’t take drinks through security, you can take food through. So if you are on a budget, taking a picnic with you can be a great way to save money. Some airports also have water fountains if you want to fill a bottle up once you are through security.
- There is no legal requirement in airport shops (except Duty Free) to show your boarding card. The reason that they ask is that if you are travelling outside the EU, then the company can claim back the VAT. There is a big campaign at the moment to force companies to pass this back to the customer. I have heard that WHSmith and Boots may offer a saving on purchases over £5/6.
- If your flight is 2+ delayed you have a legal right to food, drink, to make a phone call and if necessary accommodation.
- If your flight arrives more than 3 hours late then for short haul flights you can claim around E250 and for long haul flights this can be as much as E600 if its more than 4 hours. Certain restrictions apply though. You have to have departed from an EU country or the airline that you are travelling with needs to have a base in the EU.
How do you save?
Do you have any holiday saving tricks to share with your fellow readers? We’d love to add them to the list so that everyone can take advantage of them.
Have a wonderful holiday!!
Lots of Love
Miss Lolly xx