My guess is that you are like me; I truly love my summer vacation!
It’s not only because I have some time off to disconnect from my job but it’s also because I plan tons of cool things to do. In fact, my only problem is that I try to enjoy my vacation without throwing my wallet in the fireplace (this is exactly what happened last year when I went toVirginia Beach+New Yorkin the same month!). Usually, I try to save here and there but not at the price of cutting down on my fun. I have a couple of tricks to share with you today.
Rent a Vacation Property with Your Friends
We have done this twice so far and each time, we are amazed by the place we get for the price we pay. Here’s the trick: most vacation properties are expensive for a weekend or a three days period. However, if you take it for a full week, the price is not too bad. What we do is that we organize a weekend with a bunch of friends and we divide the cost equally. Then, for the rest of the week, we only have a few hundred bucks to spend and the property is completely ours. We also offer our friends to take more days but they usually take only an additional day. So we end-up with a high class property for an awesome weekend with friends and then relax for four days as a family at a place we couldn’t afford anyways.
We aim at a high class property with a spa and pool along with a nice interior. It’s nice to get outside of your house for a weekend but you want all the creature comforts as well, don’t you? This year, the property we rented was fully equipped (arcade, pool table, ping pong, volley ball, baseball, pool, spa + 6 flat screen TVs). The total cost for the week was $1,850. For the weekend only, it was $1350. So, we split the $1,350 amongst our group and only had to spend $500 to keep the property to ourselves for the rest of the week. Including food, wine and everything else for the week, the total cost of our vacation for a family of 4 (+1 infant) was roughly $1,200.
This year, we also rented a Chef-at-home. We had a real blast! The cook explained us everything he was making for us. We even tried to guess which spices he included in each service. We ate like kings and didn’t even have to wash the dishes! It wasn’t cheap ($85/person for a three service course) but it would have cost more if we went to a restaurant and ate the same thing. On top of that, we drank as much wine as we wanted since nobody had to drive home.
Use the Power of the Credit Card to Go To Disney World!
Oh wait… don’t take this sub-title at first degree and think that I’m getting indebted to offer my family a trip! This is not exactly the case . However, I have a reward credit card that I use to spend all my expenses (up to my $2 coffee at Starbucks). I have been paying off the card in total each month. Therefore, I’ve paid $0 interest on my card for the past three years and now have enough money to buy airplane tickets for the whole family with my points! A week at Disney will cost me less than $2,000 all included thx to my credit card!
As long as you master your budget (and your spending habits when having a card in hand!), using a reward credit card or a cash back credit card is a pretty good idea. You save money on your purchases since you don’t have to pay for transaction fees + you get reward points that you can use to finance your vacation. Don’t worry, the merchant is already charging credit card fees to all their customers, might as well benefit from the card’s features!
When it’s vacation time, do you try to be frugal or are you enjoying every single moment until your card is fully loaded? I’m trying to stay in the middle… just trying! Haha!