Winter is a popular time to go on vacation. However, especially nowadays, many people don’t feel that they can afford to go away. The truth is that with some pre-planning, creativity, and perhaps some redefining of “going away,” anyone can vacation, even with a small budget. Here are a few simple ways you can vacation on a budget in 2023.

1. Credit Card Points or Rewards

Credit card points will always be one of the best ways to pay for a vacation without having to spend as much cash as you normally would. Different credit card companies have different points or rewards systems, so it’s best to do some research into which company and system works best for you. You’d be surprised at the amount of things you can use credit card points on–besides for a hotel and flight tickets, you can often use points on food and attractions, too. Stay as knowledgeable as you can about the ins and outs of your credit card company’s points or rewards program in order to take full advantage of it.

2. Prioritize Where to Spend Money

If you are on a budget, you may not be able to stay at a top hotel, go to the most expensive restaurant, or do a high-budget attraction all in one trip, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do any of it. Think about what your vacation goals are to help you prioritize where you want to spend your money. If all you’re looking for is a place to relax, maybe you want to spend more on the hotel so that the setting of your vacation makes you feel luxurious and tranquil. If your focus is more on activities, you may want to stay somewhere less pricey so you can focus your funds on activities. If you’re excited about the local cuisine in your vacation spot, you can prioritize your budget accordingly.

3. Vacation During Off-Season

From flight tickets to hotel stays, prices can fluctuate depending on the time of year you travel. Not everyone has the flexibility to vacation at any time of the year (such as if you are traveling based on the school calendar), but if you do have that flexibility, you should try to go away during less popular times. You’ll likely pay less for big-ticket items like flights and accommodations, and you may even enjoy your vacation spot more when it’s less crowded.

4. Vacation Not Just on a Budget, But with a Budget

Make a budget specifically for vacation expenses. Decide in advance how much you want to spend on things like food, attractions, and souvenirs. It’s easy to get carried away on vacation, so having a budget will help keep your spending in line with what you can actually afford.

Vacation On a Budget with Financial Planning

Being on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t spend money on yourself. In fact, it’s important to take time away from your regular daily responsibilities in order to recharge. Vacationing is good for your mental health, and it doesn’t have to be extravagant in order to be effective. At DeSantis, Kiefer, Shall, & Sarcone, our team can help you manage your funds so you can achieve financial goals–both large and small. Whether you want to go on vacation, buy a house, make an investment, or have some other benchmark you’d like to achieve, a good plan will help you reach your financial dreams.