The #1 question we get asked the most is: "how do you afford to travel so much?!" The answer to that question has changed a lot over the last three years. We've gone from quitting our jobs to drive down the west coast and crash on friends couches, to freelancing and having more flexibility and mobility but limited funds, to now both working "9 to 5" jobs that we both love (which also come with nice consistent paycheques).
How to Save Money for Travel
We just got back from Bali, our dream trip, and we had the best time. But it really made us realize how far we've come and how accessible travelling the world can be, if you are armed with the right tools. Financial planning may not be the most fun topic to talk about, but if you want to achieve your goals (like travelling the world, exploring international cities, or just taking that beach vacation you desperately need), it's important to start planning and saving now.
To save money for travel, we used our favourite budgeting tool Mint! Mint is a FREE personal finance app available on iOS, Android and the Web that allows you to see all of your finances in one place. We're talking student loans, credit cards, savings accounts, and multiple bank accounts all in one spot. Having a birds-eye view of your money is super important if you want to be able to save, because you'll know exactly how much money you are earning (and spending).
Our favourite feature for saving money to travel is the "goals" tracking. We decided to go to Bali in September, 3 months before we actually left, and created a "goal" in Mint to help get us there. You can specify that you want to save for travel and it even breaks it down by airfare, hotels, activities, etc to help you figure out exactly how much you need to save. Set a date, choose an account, and then Mint will tell you exactly how much you need to save (and where you can pinch your pennies).
We decided to set a goal of how much we wanted to save and then work backwards: we set a goal to save $3000 and then figured out that we needed to save $1000 a month for the next 3 months. Which is a lot of money!! But honestly it was so great to use Mint because their budget tools show you exactly where your money is going and it really makes you realize that maybe you don't need to go for so many coffees or cocktails (or that you should start remembering to pay your bills on time to avoid late fees, oops).
It is SUPER important to create a specific account for your savings goal. We have a "travel" savings account and while it's hard to sacrifice things you love to travel, it's also amazing to watch your savings account add up over time. In the end, we actually saved way more than we needed to (Bali is so cheap!) so we have money left in our travel account for our next adventure.
The start of the year is a great time to set financial goals, and Mint will help you stick to them! Their new bill tracking and payment tool is so helpful for remembering to pay all your bills on time (guys...it's honestly really hard), avoid late fees, and plan for all your future trips. Whether your resolution is to reign in your weekly food and shopping budgets, to save for that vacation you keep putting off, or to simply pay your bills on time, paying bills directly though Mint helps you stay on top of your bills and save, save, save.
This post is in partnership with Mint, the app that we actually use to save money for travel.
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