You may still physically be here, but your mind could be dreaming of an Instagram worthy destination or a holiday where you get to kick back and relax with your family as you all get along for a change and laugh the day off.
But how do you plan a holiday that won't leave your bank account one swipe away from looking like a ghost town?
Address the elephant in the room
There is something in the air when the festive season comes by. People are more relaxed and tend to be quite generous when it comes to spending. According to a financial survey by Wonga, 76% of South Africans spend more than they have budgeted for over this period. But how do we stay loyal to our budget over this time?
Always plan ahead when budgeting
Plan ahead. It may not be a full-proof solution as there are unexpected expenses that can pop up, but it can help you save hundreds of Rands in the process. A golden rule is to always plan ahead before the holiday season comes or for any travel to help make it affordable.
Think of every possible expense that will pop up from transport, accommodation, food, drinks, clothes, entertainment, presents, sending money to loved ones and so on. It will give you a realistic picture of how much to put aside. It is also perfect for shopping around for items that are on special. Your future self that is waiting after the holiday will be pleased.
Pay off big ticket items first
Keep in mind that there is life after your travel. The last thing anyone wants to stress about after a relaxed holiday is having to take care of bills, policies and insurance that still has to be paid.
When drawing up your budget make sure that you have your bases covered to avoid having any lapsed payments for things that matter like car and life insurance, general bills and investments that can come in handy when you need them the most.
Taking care of your needs can give you a realistic picture of how much is left to spend on your travel. It will also make it easier for you to communicate with your loved ones on what you can and cannot afford to avoid overspending.
Navigating your way through gifting
Holiday regret is often big on the menu when it comes to gifting or buying items for the ones we love, even if it’s something for ourselves. It usually results in bank accounts looking dry when January swings by or South Africans approaching lenders to ease the strain. Just over 70% of people plan on buying Christmas presents.
The best time to get gifts is before peak season. However, for most people who are looking to gift their loved ones with a trending gift or something spontaneous, keep in mind to set a gift budget. Shopping online can reap discounts that can help you save, but always try to stick to your set gift budget.