Now I’m not a financial advisor or fortune teller by any means so let me take a guess about you; you have an innate calling to travel the world over, but alas! No funds to do so. Or so you think. Its almost as if there is this stigma that you can’t travel unless you are a wealthy, aristocratic louse with all the time in the world.
So not true.
Before I show you why you already have money to travel I’m going to explain why saving money sucks.
Imagine if you will, Friday evening after work. Your phone rings. Its your friends! They’re going out for dinner and drinks and want you to join. Do you want to go?
Hell yeah you do! However, you know you can’t go without spending at least 20 bucks that could have gone towards airfare. 😥 So you decline.
It’s now Wednesday, you’re at work. The boss tells you to go on break and you suddenly realize you forgot your lunch. Do you go buy food?
Uhm, duh? Look, no one enjoys being hungry. Spending 5 dollars is equivalent to nothing to most. To you that 5 bucks equals yummy street food in London, Budapest, or Tokyo. #sadviolinmusicplays
Listen up! This is the reason why saving money sucks so hard: Your focus isn’t on the end goal, but on the sacrifice of the moment.
Meaning that you aren’t focused on the pleasure of traipsing about Hong Kong in a few months; that’s too far off to enjoy yet. You are instead concered with what you aren’t getting right now. And what you aren’t getting right now is a lot of fun. Which means the sacrifice of saving sucks balls.
But it doesn’t have to.
Mostly because you already have the money, you just can’t see it.
What the what?! Are you off your meds?
Well now hear me out! All you have to do is trick yourself into saving with a budget. By budget I dont mean write out every damn cent you spend each day in a log book.
I’m talking about looking at the amount you have to spend on the essentials each month. Like rent, electricity, groceries, etc. Adding those up, then setting what’s left aside and splitting it up between the now-fun, and future-fun.
Example: my essentials I round up to equal $1,700.00 a month. Yowza! That includes: rent, car note plus insurance, utilities, credit cards, pet food & meds, cell phone, internet, gym membership. You get the picture. That’s what I need each month to cover what I consider the basics. On average I earn $2,200 a month between hourly wage and commissions.
Time for the math portion kids, grab the vodka.
I earn $2,200 a month minus $1,700 for my essentials I’m left with $500.
That $500 I take and split in four. Giving me $125 left to play with each week. There is a little trick here.
What I don’t spend of my $125 weekly I set aside. Boom, travel money. It might not be thousands, or even hundreds, but at least I’m saving every week. With the added bonus of I don’t feel I’m sacrificing my now-fun for future-fun.
I save at least $25 a week. 25 times 4 equals $100. In 6 months that is $600. And that ladies and germs, that is money to spend in Bucharest.
Did you notice earlier I said I rounded up? My basics actually equal about $1,660 (still rounding), but I set aside $1,700. That does two things. One, if a bill is higher than normal I should still have enough to cover it. Two if not, that’s an extra $40. Over 6 months, that is around $240 more to explore.
Want to know another trick?
I included an extra $100 in my essentials budget.
I save $100 a month by tricking myself into believing that to be an essential spend.
What all these tricks I play on myself allow me to do is save a total over 6 months of $1,440. In a year I’ll have $2,880. At least.
That isn’t taking into consideration if I’m thrifty as fuck one week and only spend $50 instead of $100.
Does this take self control? Yes, A LOT.
Is this the best way to save? For me yes.
This works for me, it may or may not work for you. Still I encourage you to do what I’ve done. I found a way to trick myself into saving while still having fun.
I ‘hacked’ myself in order to hack my finances, to set aside money explore. No I’m not staying at the Ritz, or flying first class. But I’m able to go.
How do you find money to travel?