St.George’s Bank research reveals 45% of Aussies are deterred from international travel due to the low dollar, and of those who do plan to travel in 2015, one in five Australian’s said they would fund their holiday with their credit card.
Andy Fell, General Manager for St.George Retail Banking said that the falling dollar was definitely good news for domestic tourism – but travellers wanting to travel internationally shouldn’t be too disheartened.
“With some simple saving strategies earlier in the year, it’s possible to have your 2015 holiday fund set aside – without relying on your credit card,” he said.
Here are StGeorge’s top tips for saving for an overseas holiday in 2015:
1. Start with a total destination budget – work out where you want to go and how much it will cost you each day. Include everything, taking into account currency – airfares, transport, accommodation, food, sightseeing, shopping – then you will have your total savings goal.
2. Break your savings goal down into a weekly amount – For example you want to go to Fiji in 6 months’ time (26 weeks), your total holiday cost is $3000, this equates to a savings goal of $115 per week.
3. Check your budget – Take a look at your budget to see if you’ll be able to reach your goal in the timeframe set – it’s important your holiday budget and savings timeframe is realistic and obtainable. Can you find more room in your budget to save? If not, consider adjusting the holiday budget or time of travel.
4. Set up a ‘holiday fund’ savings account – Have an automatic payment into this account every pay. Whenever you have any extra cash, transfer it into your holiday account.
5. Use a travel money card – If you’ve managed to reach your savings goal this is fantastic news! Consider a travel money card which can be preloaded with your funds and used just as a credit card. You can even load multiple currencies for multiple destinations and buy when the exchange rate is good.
6. Be a savvy shopper when booking your holiday – Book early to get the best discounts – fly outside of peak season if you can and use travel comparison websites for the best deal. Also don’t forget to check if your credit card offers free travel insurance, so you are not paying for insurance you don’t need.
7. Pay as much as you can before you leave – This way you’ve locked in your accommodation and travel rates, you won’t have any nasty surprises – and you’ll know how much you have left to spend while you are there.