Everyone keeps talking about their summer vacations, and don’t get me wrong, I think summer vacations are awesome.
I remember going to the beach as a kid or if we were really lucky, Disney World. However, now that I’m an adult, I have to really weigh my options and consult my budget every time I want to travel.
My husband has a two week break in August, and we really wanted to go on a nice summer vacation. However, every time I did a little research, the costs were staggering. Most hotels and resorts know that summer is the high season, and the prices reflect that. So, instead of paying for a big trip, we’re going to do a staycation or maybe take a quick road trip to places nearby. We’re living in a new area just outside of New York City and have yet to take the train there to see the sights!
If you are feeling the budget pinch, but aren’t sure whether to take a vacation or not, here are some reasons you might want to pass:
1. You rarely see the sights in your own city.
If you leave in or near a big city, how often do you play tourist? If you rarely visit the museums or cultural centers in your town, this summer might be the best time to do so. If you have kids, this is especially great because it shows them what’s special about their home turf.
2. You’re not sure you can afford it.
Don’t worry about what all the other families are doing. If you can’t afford a summer vacation, simply don’t take one. Your kids are just excited to be off of school, trust me. They won’t remember which summers they went to the beach and which ones they didn’t. Plus, with a little bit of creativity, you can set up fun activities for them in your own home all summer long.
3. You want to use your money for camp instead.
Although vacations can be great educational tools, summer camp is another way for kids to learn new and interesting things. From space camp to dinosaur camp, you can truly find anything and everything for your child to enjoy this summer. When I was growing up, I did summer dance intensives where I would go to dance class all day for 6-8 weeks. My sister, several friends, and I would carpool every day, and it was really helpful to keep our skills sharp.
Ultimately, summer doesn’t have to be about endless trips to beautiful resorts. While that’s nice and definitely enjoyable when you’re able to do it, there’s no reason to feel pressure to go if you can’t afford it. What’s most important for your family is that you all have financial stability, and sometimes that means passing on a vacation in order to be able to save up enough for one the following year.
Are you planning on going on a summer vacation this year?- Catherine Alford