This post contains referral links. Read the disclosure policy. UBER & LYFT.
Going on vacation is easy; budgeting for it can be difficult. For every trip I go on, I make a simple budget that include these 5 main categories . Using google to do some research I can get the average costs for each category.
conducting the research
Use the sites below each category to get cost estimates for your desired vacation spot. From there you can make a decision of if you can afford this trip or not. If you cannot select another location or maybe move your dates to a later date or change your budget to allow you to go to these restaurants or budget to save more.
Here are the resources and sites I use to create a simple travel budget:
Student Universe (are you a student, check out this site for discounted flights)
The links above are what I use to track flights early on in the planning stages. Flight costs increase and decrease overtime, but as you approach the date of travel flights costs usually only increase. For example, if you are 8 months out from your trip; using sites like Skyscanner you can easy search your flight and select to get daily alerts of increases or decreases in flights.
I found out that In airbnb there is a simpler tool feature that allows you to get a quick estimate of the average pricing of lodging in a specific location. Once you search your destination, select the “PRICE” filter and there will be a chart showing the range of nightly costs as well as the average cost in that destination.
Transportation can include the following: Car Rental, Public Transport, Parking Fees, Uber/Lyft
Search these sites for car rental options, public transportation guides, as well as fare estimates on ride sharing.
For UBER & LYFT use the links provided for a discount on your first ride.
Note: Some places have a better public transportation structure than others and google maps can help you find out times for buses or trains.
google search “top restaurants in [insert destination]”
These sites can give you a variety of options when it comes to dining. Search periodically as you plan for your trip on places you would like to try.
google search “top things to do in [insert destination]”
Airbnb, Trip-advisor, and Viator are my go to when it comes to figuring out what there is to do on my trip. Each of these sites provide tours, pricing, special events, and attractions that are available and as well as reviews from other travelers.
You can’t exactly look up how much souvenirs cost; they could be as small as a keychain to as large as a custom rug. Instead determine an amount you are comfortable spending and budget for that amount.
You may need to buy some additional toiletries, a few new clothing items, some sandals, or even just another small suitcase to use before heading on your vacation. Set aside some funds to cover these last minute expenses. Create a list of the items you want/need for your trip, then go online and get a cost estimate for these items. So when the trip rolls around and you’re packing you will have that extra money for these items.
Whether its eating out, using public transportation, public restrooms, or even just passing by local talent there are many instances where you might give a tip. Budget to carry extra cash so you can tip those that serve you on your trip since these costs can add up quickly. If you are not sure how much to tip, do some research ahead time so you can give the appropriate amount when the time comes.
Creating the budget
Total these amounts up and this sum will be your trip budget; the table below shows an example sum of each category and the total.
$1575 is the total cost estimate for this trip; with this information you can begin to save for each of these categories. Not sure how or where to save for a trip; check out the following post: 3 Ways to Save for a Vacation.