Prior planning is essential for traveling on a budget. When it comes to
family trips, globetrotting, well-deserved vacations and/or
going to see new places we have never been before, the
reality of cost and budgeting is always in the back of our
Planning and spending our travel dollar wisely is a priority
for most families. Curbing spending and costs, while still
enjoying your vacation to its fullest, is the key to
guaranteed success and fiscal responsibility. Your
pocketbook and family will thank you!
The reasoning behind saving money while traveling is simple:
Even if your personal budget is extremely tight, you can
still take a break and enjoy life! Simply put, life is just
too short to never step out of the door or leaving the
Also remembering that while traveling, whether on a budget
or not, even the smallest of things can all add op to a
large vacation or travel bill!
For example, all those hotel extra’s, cab-fares, tips,
restaurants, car rentals, gas for your own vehicle if on a
road trip, tickets for special attractions or events,
beach-and-pool-side drinks (if not at an all-inclusive
resort or cruise) and more, adds on and piles up!
This brings us to the some of the rhyme and reason behind
budgeting for travel and planning well. This also applies
monetarily, to ensure your trip is a success, enjoyable and
memorable. Your outlook could be a balance between
replenishing your resources and not breaking the bank in the
How to make “SMART” travel goals that are achievable.
(You may find yourself at the resort of your dreams if you follow
these steps) .
Like anything else in life, travel needs to be planned for
somewhat. It is almost like setting a short-time ‘SMART’
goal for leisure and vacationing. Marketers of time-share
and destination vacations, often refer to this as an
argument to invest in a travel solution.
People often suggest that we treat travel or vacationing,
like any other planned financial decision in life. This is
all irrespective of whether this includes house, car,
tuition, health, insurance or other life-expense. Travel and
vacation is justified and ‘sold’, as just another important
item on the list to think about and budget for.
Setting goals is described and accepted as a powerful tool
to achieve success and keeps people motivated.
Out of the list of dream destinations you just made or have
in mind, you cannot possibly achieve reaching all of them,
and nor should you perhaps. Only wishes and dreams are possible…
Going after these dreams in a planned fashion, will mean a
significant investment of time, money, energy, talent, and
opportunities. Setting priorities is a must.
Prioritizing should include travel items, trips, goals and
destinations that you really desire to visit, see, conquer,
treasure, explore and would love to achieve in your
Realizing of course that these ‘dreams’ though, might not
all be achievable immediately, or at all. You need to view
this as a wish list, shortlist eventually becoming
checklist! Then, move on to making at least the first goal
or location visit on the list happen this year!
(Alternatively, as soon as funds allow and you are able to
make it happen).
Hands-on work, defining and planning for travel in such a
way that it will convey an actual goal or goals,
destinations, budgets and periods.
A goal, in order to be effective and drive people towards
it, should have the following characteristics. The goal
should be Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic,
and Time-constrained. In other words, it must be a SMART
goal, (as referred to earlier).
The destination(s) should be clearly defined. Detail is
what matters here. Avoid generalizations; get to the point
and crux of the matter. Specify your immediate travel needs
and means. then make a proactive plan to pursue it.
For example, take that tropical island, destination dream
vacation: “I’ve always desired it…” seems a little
general when compared to ‘I will travel, with my family to
Hawaii for a vacation of two weeks within the next six
The SMART travel objective must be quantifiable. This
goes along with being specific. A goal defined specifically
might already be measurable. The abovementioned goal stated
intention, involved parties, location, purpose and a
timeframe – all measurable elements.
A measurable travel goal, like going to Hawaii, with a
family of four, including two children under the age of
five, within the next six months helps you identify, plan,
execute and track more efficiently and increase your odds of
actually making it there! Considering the logistics in this
fashion, makes it that more realistic to enable your family
to take the planned trip of a lifetime, as opposed to just
dreaming about it!
A SMART objective also needs to be action-oriented.
It can’t just be said, though. You must relate the goal to
doing something, to indicate what needs to be done. An
action verb will indicate what needs to be accomplished. “I
will travel” is a good example of an action statement,
stated intent and implies preparation and planning, will and
REALISTIC: For any goal to be motivational and get you
committed to reaching it, it must be realistic. When a goal
is not realistic and the person does not really believe it
can be reached, then the commitment is lacking and the
effort will not be there to permit the goal to be realized.
Based on your current situation, choose goals that are realistic.
What jumps to mind right away in our example, is whether and
how you can afford it and make it happen! (Hopefully this
guide can also offer some tips to get your there).
TIME-CONSTRAINED: In order for a goal to move people towards
it, it must be time-constrained. A timeline needs to be
associated with it. It will entice people to move towards
the goal. The timeline set, will be based on the goal itself
and the present status. Six months is stated here as a
realistic timeline, leaving enough time to save for, plan,
book and take your well-deserved vacation to Hawaii (as in
our stated example),OR any other location YOU decide to visit!
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