Saving tips for trips

Submitted: Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 00:55
ThreadID: 20058 Views:2203 Replies:10 FollowUps:6
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A reply to a post earlier about spending all your money setting up the 4WD and not having enough left for actual holidays got me thinking that this was a worthwhile subject because most of us (presumably) don't have an endless supply of $$$. So how do we all save for trips, particularly big ones???

Because neither my husband or I get holiday pay we not only have to find the money for the trip itself, we've also got to ensure the bills at home are covered for the time we are away. This is what we do:
1) Pay extra into the mortgage to cover payments when away using the redraw facility. This is better than putting the money in the bank because we save on interest and there's no risk of us dipping into these savings.
2) All year around we put every bit of coin (gold & silver) into a sealed can-type money box. It adds up very quickly. I open it just before each trip and there's usually enough to pay for special holiday treats such as a camel ride on Cable Beach, scenic flight etc.
3) As soon as we have some idea when we'll be away, I start buying holiday consumables such as food & grocery items and hoarding them ready for our trip. Early on I buy the non-food items and canned food, then long life food and lastly things like biscuits that have a shorter useby date. Buying a few extra items each week with the normal grocery shop is barely noticable. By the time we're ready to head off all I need to buy is fresh food such as fruit & vege and meat. For a family of four, already having 3-4 weeks grocery shopping bought and paid for before the trip is worth $650-$900 in the bank.

So, that's our technique. Anyone else out there got some good saving idea's?

:o) Melissa
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Reply By: Tripp'n Around - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 01:35

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 01:35
Hi Melissa

I'm sure it must be very hard on your family when you don't get holiday pay.
We have my hubby's holiday pay paid as wages while we are away.
Because we do it that way my hubby's pay generally doesn't get touched while we are on holidays and we have enough to pay any other bills and a food shop until his next pay.
We did much of what you do now when we had house payments, bills and children worries.
One thing anyone can do is have a special savings/debit card or a Chrissy Club account just for holidays.
We have that as well as we save "x amount" of hubby's pay towards anything needed for the 4BY before we leave. We have a credit card for stuff we can or need to put on it while away. I raid the cupboards to use up some stuff in there and I usually start buying a few weeks before we leave mainly so as it is not too much of a "last moment" thing for me to do. We usually work out what we want to do while on holidays and we also put extra aside for those unexpected touristy things that we didn't account for. If we don't use it, it goes towards the credit card bill when we get home unless we spent on a "special treat for a few nights" on the return trip, if we come home a certain way.

AnswerID: 96383

Follow Up By: Member - Melissa - Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:10

Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:10
The chrissy club idea sounds like a goody. I didn't think they were around anymore. I remember my mum used to be in one for several years when I was a kid.

:o) Melissa
FollowupID: 355260

Follow Up By: Tripp'n Around - Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:17

Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:17
Hi Melissa

I used to have one with the Commonwealth (before marriage) but now we hubby's credit union one.
We always had enough to cover Chrissy pressies/food etc and the kids back to school stuff.
Now we use it for Chrissy, 4BY and holidays where needed.

FollowupID: 355261

Reply By: old-plodder - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 09:10

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 09:10
Must be something special about women in 4wd families. My better half is the same. As soon as she sees that glint in my eye and my 'feet getting itchy" for another trip, Colette (only the cat is called she as I am reminded) starts gathering tins and other food items for the pantry. Taken a few years but the car is reasonably well set up, and Colette has the grace to accept that there is always one little item I can add at the last moment to improve the car. Luckily my holiday pay covers us for expenses on the trip. If it doesn't we can't afford it.
Then we drive all day, with Colette sharing the driving, and still manages to cook a good meal when we stop. Amazing what can be pulled out of that larder in the back of the car. Ocassionally a bought meal is a treat. But the beer and wine always gets put in, plus a few special snacks so we always eat well as we watch the sun go down each night.

Now I suppose I should buy a bunch of flowers and take them home. Better not, Colette will get suspicious that I have been up to something (or want something for the car) because flowers don't happen too often.

The tripping is getting easier. This was the first year where our two sons are 'too old' to travel with us. So costs have gone down. Not tied to school holidays either. I think the next few years could be some good travelling years.
AnswerID: 96399

Follow Up By: Wombat - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 11:36

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 11:36
Go on get Collette the flowers - she deserves them! Tell her they're just for being special.
FollowupID: 355149

Reply By: RussellV - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 10:30

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 10:30
Hi Melissa

We use an ING account where we stick a sum in each week for holidays or emergency expenses. If you're consistent with putting some aside (I use a direct credit) it soon mounts up over 12 months! Then it makes things easier when you go on that big trip. Saving the coinage works well for us too - I hate the shrapnel anyway so it goes in a money box for a rainy day and you'd be surprised how useful this method has been!! When outfitting a vehicle one could go nuts but I usually add a bit here and there and eventually it becomes the well setup machine but it is hard in this department as I notice accessories and mods are really pricey and at times it's hard to see the value in them... That what methods we use and it seems to get us by!

AnswerID: 96416

Follow Up By: Member - Melissa - Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:19

Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:19
Like you we take our time setting up our 4WD's. It's very tempting and easy (if you exercise the credit card) to go nuts, especially if you read all the magazines and ARB catalogues etc which make it seem like you must have this and that. Like you, my husband and I find it very difficult to justify spending our hard earned money on some of the "must have" things.

:o) Melissa
FollowupID: 355262

Reply By: GUPatrol - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 10:49

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 10:49
Another tip for the fuel part of the holiday (if motoring).
Get a fuel card such as BP card or similar, choose to pay a little extra per month which adds up on your fuel account.
When on holidays you will use the card extra times drawing from the accumulated funds and not denting your cash flow.

AnswerID: 96418

Reply By: madcow - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 11:08

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 11:08
We use the good old christmas fund account and have done so for years. Direct deposit out of the paycheck so you do not miss it. Generally speaking it covers the fuel and accomodation costs which is the biggest expense. We also load up the credit card to pay for these also. You do need to keep receipts and check each transaction to keep a track of where you are up to. A couple of times we have been overcharged and unless you check it you are usually miles away before you realise their mistake.

AnswerID: 96420

Reply By: rolande- Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 13:15

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 13:15
We have found that the cost of food, etc is minimal compared to the cost of fuel, so usually try to make smaller trips rather than the one big one each year. This way we looks for places to visit closer to home rather than try to drive hundreds of K's to visit a spot when there are many others closer that we are yet to visit. Means less time between trips so planning happens constantly, and we see places we may have otherwise missed because they are in our own back yard.
AnswerID: 96441

Reply By: glenno(bris) - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 14:14

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 14:14
You are probably refering to my post so here goes . I havnt owned a 4wd for twenty years and my current one i have had for only 12 months . So basically i had to start from scratch . I am buying my gear in priorities .
priority one . first aid kit , comms . ( some people might say fridge for beer)
priority two . How am i going to fix that tyre , and recovery .
So the way i get around money problems is to prioritise what i need to buy .
AnswerID: 96450

Follow Up By: Footloose - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 15:58

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 15:58
I just bought a tyrepliars kit s/h on Ebay. Works a treat even for old guys like me :) Mind you I did have problems putting the rim on (read ..sledge hammer...yes I know just kick it on with your boots...unless you have crook legs)
Mate rekkons the other tyre tool is much easier but the kit wasn't exe.
Just remember that with your tyre and recovery gear that you aren't 25 any more, so plan to take your time.
FollowupID: 355186

Follow Up By: Member - Melissa - Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:30

Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:30
Sure does cost a lot of money to set up the 4WD. Even more if you're also relatively new to camping and need to buy all the camping kit too. We've been 4Wdriving for 15 years and I can't remember a time in my life when I didn't have a heap of camping gear. Even so, we still seem to pour more money into the vehicle or camp kit before each trip. We reckone we need to hang onto our current 4WD for 8-10 years to justify what's been spent on it and what is still to be spent. Over the years we've saved heaps by buying 2nd hand where possible. Keep an eye on your local trading see just about everything for all makes and models come up sooner or later.

:o) Melissa
FollowupID: 355264

Reply By: Footloose - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 16:02

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 16:02
Some gear for the car can be bought s/h. Comms can be rented. A tent is cheaper than a motel. Driving at 90 instead of 110 will save fuel and you'll see more. Have a chat to the grey nomads in the caravan parks...they know all the cheap lurks :))
AnswerID: 96468

Reply By: Big Kidz (Andrew & Jen) - Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 21:20

Thursday, Feb 03, 2005 at 21:20
I am a pathetic creature - I cannot budget!!

So I have decided to do two things to make me save more than I spend.

1. Borrowed money to invest and have to pay the loan back and keep by bank balance from going into the red and getting hefty bank fees. This means I am saving for my's non-negotiable really....the bank won't let me opt out of a repayment without a lot of hassle.

2. Pay more off my home loan each month that I need to - also a hassle to change the repayments so I can 'waste' more money, and at the end of the year I have a nice safety margin so I can take trips and re-draw......but you have to make the redrawing a big blowing it on normal living expenses.

AnswerID: 96523

Reply By: Bros - Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:34

Friday, Feb 04, 2005 at 00:34
I work heaps of O/T.
Work is the curse of the down and out bludger.

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AnswerID: 96566

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