Throwback to last November when I took a girl's trip with my college friends! I remember the fun we had like it was yesterday. ATV's, zip-lining, and all the plantains in Playa Del Carmen we could eat. You don't appreciate something until it's gone. I promise Lord to never complain about anything ever again if you can Bring Back Vacations!!!! In fact, not sure if I can leave this world without going to about one million more places.
Why this Trip is so Important
It's not a secret I enjoy traveling. I'm consistently making posts on social media about it, and honestly, before this year, you would only catch me posting when I was going places. I like sharing my experiences and being in a new environment instead of my now boring reality of everyday routines, starring me and the work-desk in Minnesota.
As I mentioned in a previous post, my honey and I went to San Diego the weekend of Thanksgiving. Just being in a new environment, in another city, with my husband, helped me find a new relaxation level. I like to find ways to slow down, even in a pandemic, so that I can take care of myself mentally. It was genuinely exhausting waking up every day to log on to a computer and answering to someone five days a week. Not to mention by the time the day is over, it's now mommy time because my three-year-old is on until bedtime. I have a slither of time to myself from 8-10, that usually competes with school, studying, and quality time with my husband. To say my life is busy is an understatement.
Budgeting for the Trip
Well, when we decided to carve out some much-needed quality time and a budget for it, I was down for the cause. Now, I would like to remind everyone that I still ball on a budget as much as I enjoy letting the dollars flow. We selected a beautiful 5-minute-walking-to-the-beach house on a hill for four nights as our rental Airbnb. We spent about $117/per night, which is pretty medium in pricing. For us, it was all about location and just making sure we could walk to the beach if we wanted. Oh, did we walk too! I think I got a new badge on my Fitbit for this trip for hitting 20,000 steps, which has been foreign to me ever since we have been working from home.
We budgeted around $1000 for food since we didn't plan on cooking and our tickets to San Diego cost about $250 apiece. We rented a car for about $40/day and spent $300 on pocket money to buy things like souvenirs. I scored some Frida Kahlo paintings as my take-home treasure and got my son a shark toy since he is into those now.
Planning this trip, we kept our budget in mind, but I would be lying if I didn't mention we wanted to splurge just a little. Let's be real; it's been a challenging ass year.
🔴 So side note, my husband is the one that plans all our trips. I literally just show up with my suitcase, ready to go to the airport; the only thing I keep track of is our passports, money, and my iPhone, sometimes his because hubby can be forgetful. What I'm about to share is his process of getting our trips down to budget-friendly travel.
So Jeramy says:
Hotel and Accommodations
Always check rates on hotels when traveling. Airbnb's are great, but hotels offer great incentives, especially during the pandemic. You can always find great pricing at sites like Hotels.com and Orbitz to get them locked in at a lower price and reserve without paying until the day before in case you want to shop around. Airbnbs are okay as well, but it depends on what type of experience you want. We have done hotels, some trips, and homestays on another, so it just depends on what you want to do.
Food and Eating
Food is a huge part of the budget. Always look for places that give you the most experience when you are spending a little more. Otherwise, every meal doesn't need to be super expensive, just maybe on a fancy meal of $70-$100/a day, and the rest of the food budget should be $20-$30 quick grabs for two.
Site-seeing and Entertainment
Make sure to do your research on local entertainment to find a lot of fun things to do for free. When we w ere in San Diego, we found many excellent sites that were local to the area that was either low-cost or free. We didn't need to spend a lot of money to have a good time. We also like to do things like bike-riding, walking, or hiking to see places, so it was easy to get around for us.
We don't do a ton of shopping unless it's something super special. Like when I was in San Diego, I splurged on some Frida Kahlo paintings because I love Frida Kahlo or when Jeramy and I went to Mexico one year, he bought a Minnesota Vikings poncho. However, we stopped buying souvenirs a while ago. As for clothes, we don't really buy clothes unless we forgot something we needed, especially since we don't have tax on clothes in Minnesota, so technically it would be more expensive to buy in another place. However, if you do, keep it budget-friendly; remember you weren't there to shop but to experience!
As someone looking forward to more places to see and go to in 2021, I will say you can always find a budget and a time to make it happen. We chose a time between jobs for me since I would be starting a new one soon and took two weeks off in between the old job. I would recommend trying to make it work because life is too short to always think about money, and sometimes you do have to live in the now!
The Lioness is a financial blogger based in the Twin Cities. After spending most of her career in accounting, she decided to leap into the world of small business, investing and savings. As she is on this journey of juggling both her career and small business, she wants to share what she is learning along the way, as she builds her passive income.