When our long-awaited holidays come round, the only thing we have on our mind is getting some R&R — not managing our finances. Here are some valuable tips to keep our spending under control and ward off sudden shocks from our current account after our time-off.

Keeping our finances in good shape doesn’t have to mean having less fun or holding back. But we should be mindful of some things to save money and avoid going home in the sulks.

Budget, budget, budget

Yes, budgeting on holiday is hard; but it’s our best way to know how much money we’re able to spend. Calculating what we’ll be paying for accommodation, transport, meals, souvenirs and leisure — and sticking to it — will help us steer clear of wasteful whims and last-minute costs.

All-inclusive packages give us peace of mind about where we’re staying and what’s on the menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. According to this article (in Spanish) from Finanzas para Mortales (Finance for Mortals), some travel agencies and hotels provide open bar and snack options that make keeping track of spending easier.

Plan your holiday early

Gonna travel? Book your mode of transport early, since plane and train ticket prices tend to rise closer to the departure date. If you know when your holiday will start and end, don’t put it off. Also, use price comparison websites to see the best deals. Plus, if you can be flexible, consider flights or trains at less busy times during the day (like in the early morning), as they are generally cheaper.

Take advantage of free-entry days

You’ll certainly want to see monuments, exhibits and museums. A great way to do this without hurting your wallet is visiting them on their free-entry days. Most museums have special days and times for visitors to come in for free. Just check out their websites or ask at a tourism office.

Save up travel points and exchange them on your next holiday

Many airlines and hotels have loyalty programmes that give us points each time we spend money on their services. These deals can give us discounts on new bookings or travel reservations. Some companies will tell you exclusive offers if you sign up for their newsletter.

Travel in the off-season

If you can go on holiday whenever you like, it's best to avoid peak season months when accommodation is more expensive. Choose times when demand is low: it will not only save you money but also allow you to avoid crowds and enjoy a more relaxing holiday. Read this article by Santander Consumer Finance to find out which month is best for taking time off. 

Visit less popular destinations

Some places become trendy, and it’s impossible to get to them without paying an arm and a leg. Nonetheless, loads of places off the beaten path are worth visiting even though few choose to go there. Just a little research — as this article (in Spanish) by Finanzas para Mortales (Finance for Mortals) suggests — is all it takes to be surprised by all the beautiful locations out there where we can switch off without harming our financial health. Whether you're looking to lie on a beach or hike up a mountain, you’re bound to find that paradise to spend time with your partner, family, friends or by yourself.

Want to know other tricks to save money on holiday? Check out these financial health tips in this article (in Spanish) by Openbank.  

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