We usually have many trips planned each year. Sometimes they might just be road trips, but they are still exciting. As thrilled as I am about these wonderful trips, they all come with price tags. With this in mind, I did some research and found some of the best ways to cut our expenses, thus helping us save for these precious trips. After doing all this research I figured this might help others wanting to save and be able to take their family on a summer vacation or a winter ski adventure. I found 18 money saving tips that can help make these trips possible. There is a lot of information, so I decided the break up the list into 3 separate posts. This is part 1 which contains tips 1-6. The link to part 2 is below.
1 -Reduce or eliminate car usage
Here is one of the easiest ways that we are saving money each month. Gene works for the local transit agency here and in Denver and we each get free annual passes. Wohooo. It definitely saves us each month. However, if you don’t have this perk with your company, taking the bus, walking, biking, etc will definitely save you in gas, car maintenance, etc. Of course, I know this is not logical in some geographical areas, but if it is an option for you, it can save you a lot each month that can go toward your trips.
2 – Reduce your power, water, and gas bills.
This is another thing we try to do, even though it drives me crazy, lol. However, you can save on your power bill by unplugging appliances when not being used. Even though they are off, they still can use up to 40% of their normal usage. It may not seem like a lot, but it can add up over time. You can also be a good steward of the earth by saving water. Take a shorter shower, turn off the faucet when brushing your teeth, and only running the dishwasher or laundry machines when you have full loads. It uses the same amount of water, might as well use it to its full potential. One of the things we do a lot to help save money is keeping our thermostat set lower than I’d like, but it is saving us a lot each month. It is amazing what a 5-degree difference does in the bill. They say a one-degree change in temp, could save you up to 5%. We just use a lot of blankets when it’s cooler. 🙂
3 – Renegotiate Cable/Phone/Internet bills
Sadly this suggestion has never really worked for us, but I know of others that did, so I decided to share it. Every time I have tried to renegotiate our bill, it seems to fall on deaf ears. Many companies don’t seem to care about customer retention, But it is worth a shot to call and ask to see what they can do. Sometimes they will have a special or packages that will save you for a year or two but then go up. We have moved back and forth from different companies to save. Never hurts to ask though.
UPDATE – We got tired of the games and cut our TV cable provider! I thought I would miss it, but we don’t. We still have the regular over-the-air stations, and we now have Netflix, Hulu, and CBS which keep us very entertained. The best part is that it saves us over $100 a month.
4 – Give up your gym membership
This one may be hard for many people, including me. Being in a city where it’s cold so much of the year it’s not really easy to get out and walk every day, thus I like being able to go somewhere and go swimming, walk the track or use the machines. However, that’s just me. For others, you can get some DVDs and work out at home, or get a treadmill, climber, etc. I just need more structure, or I wouldn’t do it. This is a hard one, but if I did give it up, I’d be saving about $30 a month.
5 – Reduce or eliminate your caffeine addiction
Reducing or eliminating coffee is an easy one for me as I don’t drink coffee, lol. I do drink a lot of tea, but buy the boxes and brew my own at home or the office. However, I know I am in the minority and most people can’t function properly without their shot of caffeine. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t give up the Starbucks for a home-brewed cup, or get your fix at the office. If you do have to go to Starbuck, maybe switch to their house blend instead of the fancy lattes and such. It can save you a lot each month. I know this would be a hard one for many people.
6 – Brown-bag it to work
This one is another one that is a little difficult for me. I am not much of a leftover person depending on what it is. I also don’t like having the same thing over and over. But I do try to mix it up and bring my lunch a few days and go out for a quick fast-food lunch once or twice. I will also go to Subway and get a foot long with dressing etc. on the side. I eat the first half that day and the second half the next day. Since it is dry, it is usually pretty good still the next day. It is cheaper than buying two 6 inches. I know this isn’t for everybody, but it works for me. I also do a lot of soups as I do like those the next day. Sometimes they are even better the next day. You can also being lettuce and sides to make your own salad. Whatever works for you.
So what do you think of these first 6 ideas for saving money? Are there any that you are doing? If so, are they helping? Thanks in advance for any comments. Again, this is part 1 which contains tips 1-6. Here are the links for Money Savings Tips, for your Big Trip – Part 2 and Money Saving Tips, for your Big Trip – Part 3 if you want to see all 18 tips.
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13 thoughts on “Saving Money Tips for Your Big Trip – Part One of Three”
I’ve got to face down the cable/internet company this week – it wasn’t a big jump, but I’m going to call them out on the increase anyway because you give an inch and then next thing you know, they take a mile. Meanwhile, it’s eating away at your ability to pay for a trip halfway around the world! Lol 🙂
Hi Katie. Thank you for the message. Hope things go well with the cable/internet people. Sadly, I didn’t have any luck, but I know a few who have. Best of luck. Let me know what happens. Maybe you will still make that Around the World trip yet. 🙂
All great ideas. It’s really amazing how easy it is to waste a little bit of money here and there without realizing it.
Yep, it adds up quickly Heidi. It’s so sad, but so can the savings. Right? Thanks for the comment.
Great tips, Samantha. We have a gym at home and before COVID, I was having group sessions with about 3-5 others at a trainer’s home nearby twice a week. After I stopped that (saving a lot of money), I’m finding it hard to motivate myself to workout at home. I just started with a home membership on demand yoga service, so I hope that might make me feel more like I’m exercising with others. It’s less than $20/month, so less than I was paying for one group session before!
That tip about the caffeine addiction is such a good one. I love my coffee but brew it at home and rarely buy coffee out–even before COVID. That can save SOOOO much money if people realize how much they’re spending for those expensive coffees daily. I’d rather save it and put it towards a trip. Not sure we’ll get to take another trip this year in 2021, but surely in 2022.
Hi Melissa. It’s nice that you are able to work out from home. I have never done yoga, but that seems like a great way to connect with people but not be together. Hope it continues to work out for you. As far as the coffee goes, I know some people would die without their Starbucks fix, lol. My best friend has been that way for a LONG time, lol. Like I said, I am a tea person and glad I never got into the fancy coffee thing. PS, my nephew works at Starbucks. What can I say? lol. Thanks for the message. Stay safe.
Love these tips. My heating bill has been astronomical. I will be going solar this year.
Nice Kate. We are getting a few solar panels our self. Didn’t mention that, but I am happy that it is coming later this year. I guess it takes a while. Had not idea. Best of luck to you guys. Let me know how it goes when yours is done.