“I will travel more in 2018”. “I must make more time for myself”.
It’s the end of the year, and a great time to look back at the goals you made at the beginning of the year and reflect on how far you’ve come. It’s also a great time to reevaluate your goals and make new ones, for the upcoming year.
If going on a vacation was one of your goals for 2018 but you’ve yet to achieve it due to reasons such as the lack of time or funds, you shouldn’t give up too easily. It’s without a doubt that travelling can be an expensive affair, especially when you might have other more pressing daily expenses to account for. It is also important to ensure that financing your vacation doesn’t mean having to eat into your personal funds that you have set aside for your daily expenses and emergencies.
How Can I Turn My Dream Vacation Destination Into Reality?
If you’re feeling a little disheartened after all that’s been said and are thinking of putting off your vacation plans yet again, you might wish to consider applying for a personalised vacation loan.
So what exactly are vacation loans?
Vacation loans are unsecured loans that you can take to cover the costs of your vacation. It allows you to take that dream vacation and pay for it over time. You therefore won’t have to put a strain on your finances or make any drastic changes to your lifestyle in order to afford the vacation. Therefore, they function in the same way as personal loans do.
The pros of applying for a vacation loan is that there isn’t a minimum annual salary requirement. This means that as long as you’re able to prove that you have a steady source of income each month, you’ll most probably be approved for the loan. Moreover, vacation loans are considered unsecured loans. Hence, you won’t have to provide any collateral in exchange for the loan. Compared to applying for a credit card loan, a personalised vacation loan triumphs as they have a faster approval process and are less strict when it comes to issues of credit score. Thus, you’ll be able to get the cash you need, fast.
Vacation loans can also be a timely and reliable option to consider given their low interest rates and flexible repayment schedules. Now all you have to do is fuss over where you’ll be travelling to next and how to travel smart!
The following tips to travel smart will ensure that you enjoy your trip so much that you won’t have a problem meeting your vacation goals for the following year.
Planning The Trip
1. Research Your Destination
This is probably one of the most exciting steps in planning your trip. Learning as much about your dream vacation destination as possible ensures that you don’t run out of fun things to do and see. You’ll know where to visit, what are the best foods to try and cover as much of your dream destination as possible in the short vacation time you have available. It will also help you budget better for your trip.
Look for a map or a guidebook. You can also look for reviews and guides online. Research activities to do and places that are a ‘must’ see. Make a list of things you want to do and places you want to visit to better maximise your vacation time.
How much do you need for the trip?
There’s nothing worse than emptying your pockets in a foreign country. Having a budget will ensure that you can enjoy your trip fully, and will also help to reign in your spending. Some items to include in your budget:
- Transport to the destination e.g. air ticket, bus tickets, taxi, car rental etc.
- Transportation while abroad e.g. bus tickets, train tickets, taxi fare, fuel for rental car
- Travel insurance
- Spending money e.g. for souvenirs and other miscellaneous items.
- Emergency money
3. Make Your Bookings Early
Flights and accommodation can easily eat up more than half of your vacation budget. You can help to reduce this budget by taking advantage of deals and booking early. Booking early also ensures that you won’t have to worry about beating the last minute rush to get a ticket or accommodation.
Be sure to compare prices and secure the best possible deals.
1. Always Use Local Currency When Abroad
It may seem easier to simply use dollars when traveling. However, you could end up spending much more than you need to. Merchants impose extremely high exchange rates when you purchase with foreign currencies. You may also find some merchants that don’t accept foreign currencies.
You can save time and money by simply ensuring that your spending money is in the local currency.
2. Exchange Currency Before You Travel
It’s easier to change your money into the local currency before you travel. This will save you time searching for a money exchange when you arrive at your destination. This is time that you can better use enjoying your vacation.
It will also ensure that you actually have the local currency when you travel. You may find it difficult to find a money changer who can change your money to the local currency. The rates of the local money changer may also not be as good compared to that of Singapore.
3. Invest In Travel Insurance
You never know when something unfortunate will happen. You could fall sick while on your trip, experience flight delays or even lose your luggage. It pays to have insurance to cover losses, illness while traveling, and any other unforeseen circumstances. Take some time to compare travel insurance providers and their packages to ensure that you’re getting the best deal.
1. Have A Plan
Planning for your packing can help you avoid more than 80 percent of the pitfalls that people experience while traveling. Think about all the time you will be away and the type of activities that you will engage in. Lay out all the clothes you will wear during the trip and take a hard look. Having all your outfits laid out in front of you will help ensure that you have all your bases covered. It will also ensure that you do not overpack.
2. Pack Light
You don’t have to pack every single outfit you have just to be sure that you’ll be ok. There are various tricks to pack light. One is by packing pieces that can be matched for different occasions. Be sure to pack a lot of light versatile clothing such as sarongs and dresses if you will be heading to a hot place like the beach.
3. Roll Them Up
Rolling your clothes instead of using the traditional folding method will help to save you lots of space. You can squeeze in a lot more t-shirts and dresses this way.
Before You Go
1. Get Some Exercise
You’re probably going to stuff yourself silly with food when you travel. After all, it’s only right to relax and unwind while on vacation. That said, it pays to get some exercise done before you travel in order to keep yourselves fit so that you can gain those extra calories without feeling too guilty.
2. Ensure Access To Important Documents
You may need some of your documents aside from your passport while you’re traveling. Documents such as driving license, insurance, tickets and booking confirmation may be required. If you’re not too sure about carrying them along with you, scan them and upload them to cloud storage.
3. Buy An Overseas SIM Card
Stay in contact with your loved ones by ensuring that you purchase an overseas SIM card online. Websites such as Qoo10 will provide you with an international SIM card that will be delivered to your Singapore address. This will save you the hassle of looking for a SIM card when you arrive at your destination. It also ensures that you have a working internet connection when you land so that you’ll be able to make the relevant calls and contact your Airbnb/accommodation host or driver to let them know that you have arrived.
1. Be Conscious Of Safety And Security
Yes, there are thugs in paradise too. Be vigilant of your possessions and personal security, especially when you’re in public places. Keep valuables such as money and credit cards out of sight. Use only reputable and licensed taxi services. Avoid staying out very late, especially alone. Never leave your food or drink unattended.
2. Respect The Local Customs
Avoid standing out like a sore thumb by respecting the local customs. This means dressing appropriately (especially in places where the locals are sensitive about dress code), asking permission before taking photos of people or showing respect when visiting historical, sacred or cultural sites.
3. Stay In Touch
Let you family and friends know where you are and what you’re doing. This will ensure that someone knows where you are at all times.
That said, it’s time to take that much needed break and scoot off on your next adventure! Our vacation loans are aptly designed to suit your travel needs. Apply for a loan with us today. Alternatively, you can also speak to us to find out more!