Disclosure: This review was made possible by iConnect and Luvs. I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions stated are 100% mine. You can read my full Disclosure Policy here. Thank you.
If your family is anything like my own, you know how hard it can be to create, let alone maintain, a family budget. Especially if you are a mom of littles or with a newborn at home. While there are numerous ways to savvy around your home when you have a baby, from buying second-hand furniture and crocheting cloth baby essentials, but when it when comes to saving for long-term pre-baby funds, such as a vacation, it may seem complicated to find ways to budget in for such a big ticket expense!
Having a baby doesn’t mean vacations are off the table. Quite the opposite. Vacations can prove to be the much-needed relaxation moms need to recharge from days of caring for others and can serve as ways to not only bond with your family, but to allow your children new places to explore, cultures to be exposed to, and cuisine to try. So the only thing stopping you and your baby from enjoying a bit of much-needed R&R is just a few clever budget-savvy strategies to get you to your desired port of call quicker than you may think! Here are five ways to help get you started.
1. Dine in: Did you know that according to the National Consumer Council, Americans spend triple the cost of cooking meals at home each time they eat out and that the average American spends $1,100.00 a year dining out versus cooking at home. Which is easy to consider as the average fast food meal for a family of four can total easily over $20.00! However, if you dine in at home and following strategies such as meal planning, cash envelope trips to the grocery stores, and zero-waste bulk shopping for household goods you could literally save thousands of dollars each year. Then put those saved dollars to good use by taking the difference of what you spent dining out from your actual grocery bill and placing those funds into a vacation-specific account at your local bank for one year, imagine the trip you could go on with you and your baby next Summer!
2. Be your own Barista: In my early 20’s it would not have been uncommon for me to spend upwards of $10.00 a day on a morning and afternoon frozen coffee at my local cafe. A cost of nearly $3,600.00 a year. As a wife and mom, this is an expense I couldn’t justify in my current season of life. Being your own barista at home, creating your own coffee drinks can help you not only save hundreds of dollars a year but also help you keep dozens of needless plastic and styrofoam cups from entering landfills each year. With each cup of coffee, you make at home, allocate $1.00 to your ongoing vacation fund and see just how quickly the cost of getting a cup of joe out can save you!
3. Declutter your home: Consider clearing your home of unnecessary clutter. Think unused furniture, duplicate small appliances, and even outgrown baby clothes and gear. Then sell your unused goods on Facebook local sales sites, Craigslist, or eBay and add the proceeds to your growing vacation fund. A decluttered home will help you focus on saving for your vacation, but more importantly, give you more time to spend with your baby in lieu of cleaning and organizing your home!
4. Flexibility is key: Once you have your vacation plan in place, remember to be flexible with your vacation details. Consider getting the most bang for your vacation buck by:
- Be flexible with flights. Fly midweek instead of on the weekend; fly with stops instead of direct. Small changes like this can save you hundreds of dollars per trip.
- Travel off-season. Book flights and rail tickets just before or after peak season when prices are rock bottom.
- Think outside the box. Why are the most popular destinations so expensive? Because everyone goes there. Looking for a beach but Costa Rica’s a little pricey? Try Nicaragua. Love to go to Paris but less than thrilled with the expenses the city of lights hails? Try Provance, Saint-Lo, Normandy, or Marseille instead. Think regional. Travel to your favorite country and then take the train to Paris for the day. You’ll save upwards of half the costs of traveling to higher sought-after destination pricing for vacation.
- Skip the chain hotels. I rarely stay at big expensive brand hotels. They offer very little value, and there are many better alternatives available. Why spend $150 a night when $50 will get you the same thing? A few of my favorite lodging alternatives include bed and breakfasts or check out sites that offer competitive hotel booking bids for local cost hotel stays.
- Take free tours. Sure, you could pay a sightseeing service for the standard tour. But in major cities around the world, free walking tours show you the city’s highlights and teach you about the culture. You also meet cool, smart, genuinely nice people along the way.
- Book last-minute. Airfare costs tend to skyrocket when reserving at the last minute.But not for cruises. Crusie lines looking to fill to capacity rooms will offer deep discounts 2-3 weeks before ships leave port.
5. Buy Luvs: Luvs understands how important family time is, and they want to help you save for vacation by offering you a $2.00 off print-at-home coupon. Luvs is already a super affordable way to save money when you’ve got a baby. Having high-value coupons like this is another way you can save! You can tally up the amount of money you save each month using money-saving coupons and grocery rebate apps and transfer that amount to your ongoing vacation fund as well! Put those extra dollars that you save by buying Luvs in your vacation fund, and it will add up quickly.
Not only can Luvs help you save for your vacation while having a baby, it can also help you have a better piece of mind at home too! Luvs Ultra Leakguard Diapers with NightLock Plus™ are softer and more absorbent than before, with large stretch tabs for easy fastening, ultra-leakage protection, and a money-back guarantee. Luvs, the official diaper of experienced parents, provides features babies and parents need for less cost than premium brands. If you find that you’re not happy with Luvs, they offer a money back guarantee! That’s a win-win in my book!
Remember, your $2.00 print-at-home coupon is good for up to 30 days after printing, so be sure to print and redeem your coupon before it expires! Also worth noting, you can use the coupon anywhere Luvs are sold, and its good on all Luvs products, except for trial and travel sized packs.
So savvy-savers, those are five ways you can save for upcoming vacation with a baby this summer. So friends, do you have a vacation planned this summer or fun budget-friendly tips for new moms to save for upcoming vacations? I’d love to hear about them below!