When it comes to going on holiday, one thing we often under-appreciate is the need for spending money. Saving up for your holiday spending money once you have paid for the holiday can be tough. You work hard to earn the money to pay for the holiday itself, but you still need to live in the meantime. Not many people will claim to enjoy putting effort into saving money. Over the years I’ve built up a couple of saving tips when it comes to creating a pot of holiday spending money and I wanted to share them with you.
Saving tips #1 – Get a savings jar/money box
Do you remember how you saved money when you were a child? Chances are, you had a money box. When you earned some extra cash from household chores, a paper round or a visit from the grandparents – you took your pennies and popped them into your money box. At some point in the future when you wanted a new toy or computer game, the piggy bank was raided and you rejoiced at your treasure trove.
It’s a really simple way to build a lot of cash and would be right at the top of my list of saving tips. I’ve got various receptacles that I throw the odd penny into over the year. When my holiday finally comes around, I pool them all together, bag them up and take them to the bank. Never underestimate the power of a savings jar.
I’m not a fan of leaving the house with a pocket full of change. When I get home each day I empty my pockets of most coins. By the front door, I have one of the old school whiskey bottles. This is where I dispose of my copper coins, 10 pence pieces, and 20ps. In my office, I have an actual money box (in the shape of a football). In here I put 50ps and the occasional one pound coin. Finally, for a reason I’m not sure of, I have 5ps in a metal beer bottle.
Counting up the cash
If you use the money box/savings jar method I think you will be pleasantly surprised how much you will accumulate over time. I’ve tallied up the total on my various cash pots recently ahead of my holiday and to my delight, there was more than £225! Granted, this is not likely to be sufficient for a holiday but it will no doubt prove a decent chunk of what you might take with you. The bonus here is that I have put very little effort into this, so coupled with any other of my saving tips I should really have quite the stash of cash.
As a little extra tip, make sure you stock up on money bags when you are next at the bank. These will come in handy when it comes to counting up your cash. Try to avoid the easier route of taking your bounty to one of the machines that will do this for you. These will charge a fee for counting your money, something which you can likely easily do yourself. Why should anyone else get a cut of your savings?
Also, make sure that you wash your hands after you have finished counting the cash. Who knows where those coins have been over the years!
Saving tips #2 – GetChip
The second of my saving tips is an app called GetChip. The GetChip app is designed to make digital saving a little bit easier for you. I’ve been using GetChip for just over 6 months now and I have been really impressed with the amount of money I have been able to save, once again with very little effort. Give my blog article on GetChip a read for the full lowdown, but I will provide a brief taster for you today.
Essentially GetChip skims a little money out of your main bank account each week into a side account. Over time, the app analyses your spending patterns to determine what it thinks you can afford to save. If your spending is relatively consistent, your savings will follow suit. If you find one week or month that you have to spend a lot more, GetChip recognises this and proposes a lesser amount to go into your savings pot. Each time the app selects a savings amount, you have the option to decline – or to save more. GetChip pays interest too. As a bonus, the more people you refer to the app, the higher your savings interest rate. Cool right!
Since I started using the GetChip app back in March, I have accumulated £1011.56. The app has also recently improved to allow you to add a savings goal. GetChip will calculate how long it will take you to reach this based on your average rate of spending.
Saving tips #3 – set up a standing order
If you are the type of person who won’t remember to make plans to save money for your holiday, then a standing order could be another good alternative. Setting up a standing order for the day that you get paid is a good saving tip. First, decide how much you want to stash away each month. Once you have decided, move the money from your main account before you get a chance to spend it. Depending on how much you trust yourself not to spend what you save, you can either transfer to another account you own OR maybe to a completely different person so that they can mind it for you.
The key here is considering your savings amount as a bill. You should always ensure that you have enough money to cover your bills each month. Whatever is left after that is your “disposable income”. The good thing about this is you may find that you have even more money available to save by the time the month ends. If you don’t have much left, don’t worry because you have already put some aside!
Saving tips #3.1 – Transfer your cash to a holiday spending prepaid card
Following on from tip number 3, this could be handy if you are are travelling somewhere where you need a different currency. There are a number of prepaid cards in the market that offer good exchange rates on holiday currency. You should also find with many of them that you get reduced or zero fees. This is useful for when using your card in shops/restaurants. By transfer your standing order amount directly onto a prepaid card, it can convert into your currency of choice. This has double benefits, one in that you can’t now spend the money as it’s no longer in sterling. The other is that with the right card, you may get a better exchange rate on your travel money.
On my forthcoming holiday, I will be using the Monzo prepaid card. I’ve not used it before, but the reviews suggest it is a strong product. The main benefit of Monzo, is that they don’t charge you fees for using your card. You can top up the card from your phone and monitor spending too.
Final saving tips
The important thing is to have a goal. If you know how much you want to save, you can build a savings plan. For example, if you want £1000 and you have ten months – you need an average of £100 per month. By doing this you should get a realistic idea of how much you can save. Obviously, the amount you need will change depending on the type of holiday you are going on. Self-catering holidays require funds to feed yourself. All inclusive trips likely need less cash, but you still want to treat yourself.
I hope that these tips prove of use to you. I’ve used them on many occasions, to always ensure I have plenty of holiday spending cash. Check out my blog discussing cashback sites for more saving tips. You might find cashback sites useful for your pre-holiday purchases!Follow