Nothing ruins a vacation more than running out of money mid-way through. If you think your credit card will help you get through the overspend, remember that paying it off afterward will only mean that your next vacation will be even further away!
Decide on a budget for your vacation and stick to it by cooking up a plan in PocketSmith! Trust us, you’ll have fun thinking about your days away as you put them into the calendar. In this recipe, we’ll show you how to create a calendar for a two-week vacation, and how PocketSmith becomes an invaluable travel companion that looks out for you as you enjoy yourself.
Cook Time: 15 minutes or more (take as long as you need!)
Yield: A vacation free of money worries!
– 1 Premium PocketSmith Account
– An amount that you’ve set aside for your vacation (e.g. $2500)
– A basket of things you’ll be spending on during your trip: e.g. flights, accommodation, attractions, shopping, food, rentals, and a daily budget
The Budget Recipe
- Create a new calendar called ‘Vacation Plan’. This is where all events related to your Vacation will go.
- Start off the calendar with the amount you’ve set aside to spend – let’s assume that this amount is $2500. You could do this one of two ways:
- As a transfer from your primary calendar – This shows that you’re taking your travel money out of your day-to-day budget.Simply create an expense event from one of your calendars called Vacation Transfer to the value of $2500, and under ‘Transfer Options’, select ‘Vacation Plan’.This will subtract $2500 from one of your calendars and put it into your ‘Vacation plan’ calendar.
- As a new starting balance for the Vacation plan – If your ‘Vacation Plan’ is financially unrelated to the other calendars, you can simply create a new starting balance for the calendar, with a $2500 amount.
The goal is to stick to the $2500 budget by planning in your daily spending, especially for larger-ticket itemslikehotel stays and attractions.
- Make sure that only the ‘Vacation Plan’ calendar is selected, so you can only see the events and running balance belonging to it.
- Start populating your Vacation Plan with events! Do this in a way that best suits your style: you could have a daily spending budget, e.g. $80/day to account for meals and souvenirs.Make sure to set the repeat option for this event to end on the last day of your Vacation.
- If you’re on a driving Vacation, you may estimate how much you’ll be spending on fuel by gauging the driving distances. Schedule the fuel stops into your plan as well.
- Set aside an emergency buffer, e.g. $500, to account for unexpected things. You could do this by allocating it to an event called ‘Emergency’, which you could delete after your Vacation.
Keep checking in during your vacation to ensure that you’re on-track. Don’t forget that you can use iCal or WebCal exports to access your events on your smartphone or other device while you’re on the move.This helps you ensure that you’re aware of your daily allocations and running balance, so that you don’t overspend.
If the vacation is done and there’s money left over, this is a good thing! You can then initiate a transfer for the leftover sum back into your primary calendar. Later on, it’s possible for the vacation calendar to be deleted without affecting your primary calendar.
Does this budget platform look good to you? Do you want a FREE 12-month Premium Account worth $60 to try out? Then drop a comment with how you’re budgeting *now*, and you’ll be entered to win! We’ve got THREE copies to give away courtesy of our boys over at PocketSmith.
Good luck everyone! We’ll use Random.org to pick the winners in a week (next Monday, July 12th), so make sure you’re entered by Sunday at Midnight.
Jason works with PocketSmith – a personal finance and budgeting web application that utilizes a calendar to forecast your future cash positions.
*GIVEAWAY OVER* The 2 lucky winners who will now be able to budget as sexy as they look!!!! :) Winner #1: Pauline, Winner #2: Meggie Congrats!!
PS: Some of my favorite tools:
|Personal Capital (FREE) -- If you’re looking for a robust financial tracker, Personal Capital is the way to go! They’re like Mint, but on steroids and have much better tools for investment and net worth tracking. // Full review|
|Digit (FREE) -- A super easy (and automated) way to save. Every day Digit analyzes your income and expenses and will push money aside for you any time it sees extra sitting there. I've saved over $4,000 myself using them so far! // Full review|
|Acorns -- Having trouble finding money to invest? Check out Acorns – they round up all your transactions to the nearest $1.00 and drops the difference into an investment portfolio for you. Easy way to start investing! // Full review|