If you’re thinking about going on holiday in 2024, it wouldn’t be so bad to start saving now, especially if you’re planning to go on more than one trip.
The holiday season may be many months away, but in addition to booking the trip, there are also other expenses that tag along, such as toiletries and accommodation.
Planning and putting money aside will help ease your stress levels during the busy holiday season, make it easier to stay on budget when you shop, and can help you avoid credit card debt.
Here’s how to start saving for your 2024 holiday.
Track flight prices
If you’re not ready to book a trip, you can use Google Flights to track prices based on specific flights, routes, and dates.
“I use places like Google Flights to track the prices of flights that I’m looking to go on,” says Kia Commodore, personal finance creator and founder of Pennies To Pounds. “You simply set up a price tracker and you’ll be notified any time the flight changes in price so you’re able to secure the best deal.”
It is well known that last-minute bookings can come at a much higher cost. So why not start early, and reap the benefit of being organised?
“Starting to organise your trip well in advance will allow you to shop around to find the best deals, whether that’s flights, accommodation or even restaurant bookings,” added James Jones, head of consumer affairs at Experian. “You can also save a lot of money by getting a package deal, which will normally include accommodation and travel.”
Set up a dedicated savings pot
According to Jones, even though we are all knee-deep in the festive period, saving for your next holiday may very well be the last thing on your mind. However, planning in advance can help to ease the financial burden later down the line.
“With costs continuing to rise, it has become more difficult than ever before for people to save money. However, putting a small sum of money away little and often can seem less daunting and more achievable,” he says. “There are a few habits you can start to adopt now, that will help you save in a way that won’t seem like you’re make huge sacrifices.”
And setting up a dedicated holiday fund can be a great first step to your saving journey.
“This will not only help you keep your holiday savings separate from your everyday expenses, it will also deter you from dipping into it before you go off on your holiday,” says Jones.
Commodore added: “It can be hard to remain motivated when saving money towards a trip but, having a dedicated savings pot can keep you on track. A lot of providers allow you to customise what these pots look like within their apps which can help you to visualise what you’re saving towards.”
Set aside part of your income automatically
Building discipline with saving requires you to find a system that works for you.
“Many people find that using automation makes everything a lot easier. If you use an app like Plum, it will even work out how much you should be able to afford to save using AI, and then stashes the money in a pot for you each week where it could earn interest,” says Rajan Lakhani, personal finance expert at smart money app Plum.
“Automating the process means you don’t have to remember to set money aside: it’s done for you, effortlessly,”
Explore extra income streams
“Side hustles have risen through the ranks in the past few years, and have proven to be great ways to earn some extra money – so why not try your hand at that. It can be as easy as dog sitting, or even cleaning out your closet and selling unworn or unwanted clothes. That extra money can go directly in your holiday fund, giving your savings a nice boost,” says Jones.
Make use of loyalty points
Do you have a credit or loyalty card you regularly use? “If you have a credit card or loyalty card, you may have been accumulating points every time you’ve shopped. Quite often, these points can be converted to be used as discounts when booking flights and accommodation, so it’s worth checking how much you may have,” says Commodore.