How to Save Money for Your Dream Vacation

Where would you rather be today: Italy or your office?

Do you have a dream vacation that you want to save for? Knowing how much you need is the first big step towards making your dream a reality. I used this plan to save for a backpacking trip in Europe, and I’m currently using it to save for a six month sabbatical. Once you know how much you need to save, you will have leverage and motivation to meet your savings goals on time.

The Dream Vacation

The minute I came back from studying abroad during college, I started planning my next trip to Europe. I convinced my best friend that we should do a six week backpacking trip through Italy, Austria, Germany, the UK, and Ireland. I love spreadsheets and planning, so we started our research right away.

Choose Your Experience

Our first step was to determine what kind of travel experience we were looking for. Since we were backpacking and still in college, we went for a low budget trip. Safety and cleanliness were important, but we wanted to experience hostels, street food, and public transportation.

There are a lot of steps on the “luxury” scale, from hostel life to five star hotels, and each option has its pros and cons. The experience you want to have will determine how much you need to save. Take a minute and write down how you picture your travel experience. What three words would you use to describe your trip? For my backpacking trip, I would have chosen safe, cheap, and local. In other words, I wanted to be in a safe neighborhood and experience local life for the lowest price possible.

Once you have an idea of the experience you want, you can start your price research.

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