As a physician, you work hard to provide quality healthcare to your patients. With that said, it’s also essential for your health to take time off to recharge and rejuvenate!
A vacation can be a perfect way to refresh, but it can get costly fast, which is why you should plan ahead and have a savings plan. Check out these Physician Bank-approved tips to help you save money for your much needed vacation, that can also be applied to other short-term savings goals:
1. Set a budget: The first step to saving money for a vacation is setting a budget. Decide on the overall cost you’re willing to spend and turn that into your savings goal.
You can calculate your overall cost by writing down all anticipated costs and assigning a cost to them based on research and average costs. For example, you can find typical flight prices by looking at Google Flights and entering in dates during the time of year you’re traveling. You can also get quotes for hotels online to get an idea of nightly accommodation costs.
When considering all expenses, including flights and travel, accommodations, food, and activities, and factor in an emergency fund for unforeseen expenses.
You can then take into consideration the amount you’re willing to allocate to your vacation per month or per paycheck. Look at your disposable income and think about what you can reasonably add up each month. Make a loose savings plan based on this and add up what that will add up to by the time of your vacation.
With all the costs considered, and your vacation savings plan, come to an overall cost that you feel comfortable with that won’t go over what you deem is reasonable.
Now that you have a budget, dig deeper into planning your specific vacation details.
2. Plan ahead: Planning ahead is crucial when it comes to saving for a vacation. Start by doing some general research on locations, flights, and time of year for travel, so you can get a better idea of when it’s more cost-effective to travel. Consider traveling during the off-season when prices are lower, and tourist crowds are thinner.
Once you find some destinations you like, do research on each destination, is it all-inclusive or do we need a dining budget? Are there additional flights or transportation accommodations you’ll need beyond the main flight(s)?
Check out online reviews and travel blogs to learn tips for saving based on your destination. Also, make sure to look for deals and discounts, and call and ask your hotel if they have any deals going on.
Make sure to consider your budget, and realistically how many months it will take to save up for your vacation. Start saving right away, so you can be fully financially prepared for a stress-free vacation.
3. Create a plan for saving money and automate your savings where you can: You have your vacation budget, now you’ll want to create a plan for saving money.
Think about automating your savings, with a goal setting tool, like the one we have in our Physician Bank digital banking app. You can add a goal, “Save for Vacation,” and then allocate a monthly payment to your designated Physician Bank deposit account! This way you’ll be able to budget for a specific monthly payment toward your goal.
Another way to automate your savings is to enroll in our Save Up program if you’re a Physician Bank customer. Save Up will round up every checking transaction to the nearest dollar and automatically deposit that amount into your Physician Bank savings account. You can enroll in our digital banking app but you must have a Physician eCentive® checking account!
If you need to save up rapidly: review your expenses and identify areas where you could cut back. Consider reducing your dining out, shopping, or entertainment expenses. You can also consider saving on daily expenses, like packing your lunch instead of eating out and using coupons and discounts when shopping.
You can also use a budgeting tool to help you limit your spending and meet your savings goal. Our budgeting tool in our digital banking app allows you to set budgets by category with monthly spend limits that can alert you when you’ve reached your budget.
4. Rent out your home: If you own a home, consider renting it out while you’re on vacation.
You can list your home on vacation rental websites like Airbnb or VRBO and earn extra money to put toward any post-vacation expenses if you used a credit card for certain expenses or want a little boost to replenish your bank account. Just be sure to do your research and follow all local laws and regulations and check with your HOA or neighborhood on regulations regarding vacation rentals.
5. Use a travel agent: Consider using a travel agent to plan your vacation. A travel agent can help you find the best deals and discounts on hotels, flights, and extras. They can also find travel packages that include flights and hotels, or all-inclusive packages that may save you even more money than booking everything separately.
They can also help you plan your itinerary to get the most out of your vacation budget, without going over!
6. Consider less popular destinations: A lot of well-known vacation spots have higher prices than lesser-known vacation destinations. You can find spots close to popular vacation destinations but are just a little outside the major tourist area and end up saving a lot of money.
Also consider some countries and destinations where the US dollar is strong and goes a lot further like Peru or Mexico.
Saving money for a vacation as a physician requires planning, budgeting, and prioritizing your expenses. If you don’t have many options for vacation time as a busy physician, it’s helpful to have a savings plan specific for vacations and to start saving up so you have some wiggle room if you are able to take a last-minute vacation!
Remember to take time off to recharge and enjoy your well-deserved time off!
Let us help you achieve your financial goals! Connect with a bank to learn more about Physician Bank and how we can help you with your long- and short-term savings goals!
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