5 Easy Things To Sacrifice To Fuel Your Travel Fund

5 Easy Things To Sacrifice To Fuel Your Travel Fund

 

flower copyEveryone has a reason for not traveling, and most say it is a money problem. They don’t have enough money for the trips that they want to go on. I have found that there are ways to save money on the trip, but there are also things to sacrifice if you are dedicated to your traveling experiences.

As of right now, I am against using credit cards for traveling purposes. I don’t want to rely on a credit card for free travel points, but I have been doing research and thinking about it figuring out more about it.

If you are dedicated to traveling regularly, there are things to give up to start building your travel fund.

Here are the 5 things that I either sacrificed or cut back on so I can travel.

 

Starbucks/Scooters

This is probably the first thing I gave up when I started trying to save money. The more you start replacing prices with things it can buy, it changes your thinking.

If a Starbucks coffee is $5 and you buy one or two a week, That adds up to $20-40 a month. If you were to put that into your travel fund instead, you could have a tank of gas or two for a trip. When I started doing math that way, buying things changed. Forty dollars could get me just under two tanks of gas. That could get me about 300 miles away from home and back just for cutting coffee two days a week.

I am not saying to cut your coffee habit all together. Find replacement iced coffee recipes for at home and make it in bulk so you can pour it over ice in the morning and go! This will save you time and money!
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Eating Out/Bars

Since I have turned 21, I started wondering where my money was being spent. I have noticed a lot more nights out on the town and grabbing food on my way home. Once you are an “adult,” it seems like getting together with friends becomes meeting up at restaurants or bars. Especially as a server, I have found that when I have more cash with me downtown, I am more generous.

I haven’t given this up or completely cut it out, but I have definitely cut back. Instead, I have invited people over or gone over to one of their places and just brought the stuff to mix my own drinks. One bottle of alcohol from the store is usually equivalent to 2-4 drinks at the bar and you get more out of a bottle than that.

While there are times where I do treat myself to drinks at the bar with friends, it usually is a special occasion or a date. Recently, I celebrated my friend’s birthday at the bar two nights in a row. After buying a few drinks for him and myself, I dropped over $30 in just a few hours.

When I do go out, I only take a certain amount of cash and I don’t bring my debit card. I have a hard limit of how much I can spend and it becomes nonnegotiable. I also look for specials like happy hour drinks.

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Renting Textbooks

There are a lot of people who will argue with this idea, but I am a firm believer in buying used textbooks online. In the midst of finals week or my first week being done with classes, I have failed to get my rented textbook in the mail regardless of the free shipping and e-mail reminders.

Instead, I buy my textbooks on Amazon or Chegg. When the end of the semester comes, I decided which ones I want to keep or not. Bookfinder.com allows you to check prices for multiple websites and decide which textbooks to sell back to which company depending on the best prices. Getting a check in the mail for a textbook is sometimes the best feeling. I am waiting on a $134 check for books that have been sitting on my bookshelf since my freshman year of college.

This can be a tricky one because you might not always get what you paid for out of them, but I can guarantee that the difference will probably still be cheaper than the rental costs of textbooks. Especially from your school book store.

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Car Payments

My parents raised our family on no car payments. I don’t think they had a car payment my entire childhood and if they did, I was too young to remember it. They buy their vehicles outright.

While this sometimes means buying a cheaper vehicle ($1000-$4000), it means that you aren’t paying interest. You also aren’t paying for full coverage insurance. Instead of making car payments, it is easy to save up some of the money that you could be paying someone else and when the time comes, buy a new vehicle.

Dave Ramsey, a financial peace adviser, said, “The average family car payment in America is $350 a month.” I could replace my car every 4 months with that car payment. It gets me from A to B and then some. I haven’t had many mechanical issues with it since I bought it over a year and a half ago. The picture below was my first car. It was a deal that my dad worked out and it was super cheap. It still ran and my dad repainted it for me. It wasn’t special, but it was paid for in full.

What could you do and where could you go with an extra $350 a month?

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New Clothes

This is my ultimate weakness. I love shopping for new clothes. I love getting dressed up and having a ton of fun with my outfits. I have more clothes in my closet than I even know what to do with and I dread moving.

Every time I go shopping, I really question whether I really need new clothes. This summer, I did buy a couple new pairs of shorts and tank tops because I had zero jean shorts that still fit and weren’t falling apart.

Clothes are easy to spend $100+ in an afternoon. Instead, try going through your closet and selling some of the clothes that you don’t wear. Use the money from your old clothes to buy the new clothes.  If this isn’t possible, try to find great sales or try buying used clothes when you can.

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What splurge are you willing to give up so you can travel more?

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The Do’s and Don’ts For a Great Kicker Country Stampede

The Do’s and Don’ts For a Great Kicker Country Stampede

 

The Do's and Don'ts for having a great Country Stampede copy

I have finally experienced the event that I have been waiting for since I was much younger. Country Stampede was not a disappointment. It is 3 1/2 straight days of drinking, camping, and country music. Could there be a better  summertime combo??

image3A younger crowd of Country music fans fill the park as Kicker Country Stampede begins. Campers park anywhere they fit and people put up there tents in any location that they can. People from all locations jam into the park for three full days of fun.

Tuttle Creek State Park is five minutes outside of Manhattan, Kansas. The days are long and hot, filled with grilling, drinking, sunbathing, yard games, and loud music. If you don’t like all of these things, I don’t recommend Stampede for you. But if you are the average Midwest American,  I strongly suggest going at least once in your lifetime.

When I got home after the last day, I was exhausted, happy, and ready to buy my ticket for next year. I cannot wait to start packing up the camper next summer.

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76 Things That You Must Take Camping!

76 Things That You Must Take Camping!

 

 

76 Things You Must Pack For CampingTo me, Summer means camping. Fire pits. Tents. Roasting Hot dogs. S’mores over the fire. That crackling sound of the fire. Sleeping under the stars. And enjoying the sounds of Yia Yias (Grandma’s names for locusts) in the distance. Most of my childhood vacations meant packing up the tent or the camper and going. Very rarely did we stay in a hotel when we went on vacation. It is even one of my 5 Ways to Save $500 On These Travel Expenses.

One of my favorite family vacations was spent hauling our camper across the state of Nebraska, but many of our vacations or even long weekends included throwing the tents in the back of our truck and going.

Preparing for camping is sometimes the hardest part. It is nice to be able to check out your campground’s amenities prior to packing. Maybe if you have stayed at this campground before and are returning because you liked what it had to offer. But this isn’t usually the case.

While it is unlikely that you have this chance, when it comes to camping, it is better to over pack than under pack and end up at the store a million times for something you could have just brought with you. Camping should be a way to save money, but if you are running to the store for things you have at home, it is going to end up costing a pretty penny.

There are different amenities that come with campsites. Some of them are parking in the grass and setting up under a random tree where there is no real campsite. Others have picnic tables and fire pits. Others have electric outlets.

Depending what you reserve and pay for, each of them is a little different. A little bit or research can go a long way when it comes to packing and planning, so make sure you check out the campsites website if you can!

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How I Plan to Travel The World

How I Plan to Travel The World

IMG_0001 (3)My plan is a little crazy and adventurous, but that is what I aim to have my life to be. I never want my life to feel like I am on a hamster wheel. I never want another 9-5 job. I want to explore the world and do what I want. I talked about my why for wanting to traveling around the world. After telling my why, everyone has asked me how, which actually maybe be the real question.
My lease is up in April of 2017 and my goal is to set my cruise and disappear. I am not really sure on all of the details yet, but my goal for right now is to buy a new vehicle and a cute teardrop camper for this adventure across the US. I would love to just pack up and go, but I am a little afraid that the camper is going to make some of my adventures harder than they need to be.

Traveling by myself, a camper may be too much work at first. I have discussed the idea of an air mattress or even a regular mattress in the back of my jeep and using apps like Couchsurfer and AirBnb, as well as my numerous friends that I have all over the country. (Thanks to almost 5 years of military service.)  I figure that I won’t really have a plan until I get on the road, but right now all of my pennies are going towards a new vehicle.

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How to Save $500 on These 5 Travel Expenses

How to Save $500 on These 5 Travel Expenses

How to Save $500 on these 5 Travel Expenses copyI love traveling, but waitressing is currently my main source of income. I save quite a bit of my extra money when I can, but  I don’t have a ton of expendable income that I just want to throw into a trip. If I had the choice, I would travel every week and go somewhere new. The great thing is, traveling doesn’t have to be around the world for you to experience something new. I would say that most people could make a list of the great things that they haven’t done within 8 hours of their home of residence.

My goal this summer is to do some extensive traveling throughout the state and within that 8 hour radius of my home.

There are a lot of expenses when it comes to traveling. Some expenses could be split depending on your travel partners, but I challenge you to find a location and go, even if just for a day or two!

Below are the 5 main travel expenses and ways to cut back the spending.

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5 Things I LOVE about Traveling

5 Things I LOVE about Traveling

 

5 Things I love About Traveling copyOf course, traveling is one of my favorite things in the world, hence me making a career out of it. Traveling can definitely be an excuse to start doing things that you haven’t done before. It should be an opportunity to enjoy the things you already know that you love as well. When traveling, I always relish in the simple things in life, while enjoying a few new adventures.

Whatever you love doing, make a vacation a reason to take the time you have to do the things you love. 

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Why I Will Travel the World instead of Settling Down

Why I Will Travel the World instead of Settling Down

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Nothing in life ever gets accomplished if you don’t have a purpose driving what you are doing. Why do you do the things you do? Not just the everyday things that you have to do, but the things that you have to take time out of your schedule to do. The things that take a little extra perseverance or energy to do.  I announced on Facebook a few weeks ago that my career would be traveling and that I would find a way to make money with it as I go. That was the reason that I changed majors. That is the reason that I work so many extra hours at work when I could be fine with just working half of what I do.

My why is this:

From a young age, I remember traveling. My parents were always so good about planning great trips. The one I remember the most vividly (because I was older but also because it was my favorite) was our self-titled, “Let’s Go West” trip. We had zero plans but we had a camper, a few bags of food and clothes and a map. We got in the car and headed west (Nebraska). On our list of places to maybe see was Scottsbluff’s Chimney Rock. We figured that was kind of the end goal and that we would just see some fun things along the way.

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