Where Would You Like To Go?
There are many reasons you may be considering serious travel. It may finally be time to visit family you haven’t seen in far too long, or to attend an out-of-state wedding, graduation, or other special event. You might be exploring a possible move to another state, or even another country, and want to get a feel for what it’s like to live there before you commit. You may be researching for a book you’re writing or a project you’ve undertaken, and you have to go where the information is. Maybe you’re looking at colleges. Maybe you’re on a honeymoon. Maybe you’re just restless and not sure what you’re looking for.
Not that you need any of these reasons to travel. There’s inherent value in visiting other places. Museums, national monuments, historical sites, architecture, religion, music, food, or just local culture in general – it all makes our own world a little bigger and a little richer. Even if you’re looking at a family vacation at a theme park, or a camping trip, or thinking maybe you’ll just start driving and see what comes, travel is a time-honored way to expand our horizons, deepen our relationships, and enrich our minds and spirits.
Travel can be expensive. Airfare, hotels, meals, entertainment – it all adds up quickly. It’s important to budget for any vacation or other travel, not to take the fun out of it or make it all about money, but to make sure that it can stay fun and won’t be derailed by financial concerns. By having a plan and taking the time to prepare for anticipated expenses, you can free yourself from worrying about how you’re going to pay for everything or what you can or can’t afford to do along the way.
There are practical ways to reduce the expense of your business or personal travel. Compare flights from different airlines at different times of the day, or on different days of the week. Ask hotels what discounts they may offer for senior citizens, government employees (including teachers), AAA members, or other any other category to which you may belong. Look at lodging options outside of town instead of in the heart of the city (although your transportation situation may make this counterproductive). If your lodging has a refrigerator or kitchenette, consider having at least one meal a day “at home” instead of hitting three restaurants each day.
Ideally, you know a trip is coming well in advance and you can start saving up for it ahead of time. Even with that, however, you may wish to consider a travel loan before you set out. A travel loan helps you lay out a practical budget in advance. Vacation loans give you access to the resources you’ll need in order to enjoy your trip and let you repay the money you’re using in manageable monthly payments afterwards. That way, you can focus your energy on whatever you’re there to do – see family, explore natural wonders, admire artwork, or eat weird food – instead of worrying at every step how you’re going to pay for it all.