When I was younger I fantasized about traveling. Seriously – I was 100% sure my first (and probably only) job was going to be spending my life on a cruise ship. I was determined to work and see the world.
Life happened though and once I was married we pretty much put so much of our live and ambitions on hold. There were a million reasons for it. We are now older though – our oldest two children are 28 and 30 and our youngest two are 12 and 16. This is really the perfect time in our life to travel.
I can make suggestions for travel all up and down the east coast – we travel from Florida to Maine and pretty frequently. I would say the majority of our travel is to New Hampshire and Maine but there are so many reasons to go to other great places.
How are we able to travel so much?
We must be able to keep track of our expenses – before, during and after the travel experience. How do we do that? We go to CreditCards.com and use their CardMatch Tool.
This is an amazing process. You fill out some basic information and the CardMatch Tool gives you preliminary information regarding which card(s) would be best for your needs. Once that is determined – you select which card(s) you’d like to actually apply for and then you proceed through a more typical application process.
Which credit card perks are most important to you? Once you review all the options – move forward with the application process. When I completed the process, I received approval within 60 seconds. It was easy and fast. CreditCards.com believes in empowering people to use the right cards in the right way and this way allows for careful planning, monitoring and modifying with easy tracking and perks.
With this card I am able to use it just for travel purposes. All my transactions and expenses are in one place. The first time traveling like this can be scary but once you do it the first time you can start to track and plan properly for your next trip. For me that means if I spend $1,500 on my first big trip I know that each trip should take me approximately XX months to save for or pay off.
Be aware of expenses before traveling. We don’t often need to make drastic cuts to our spending – but we definitely can’t go crazy. For me that means – is the McDonald’s Diet Coke really worth it? First of all we all know how terrible that is for our health but I feel that magnetic pull every time I drive by a McDonalds. For some people it may be their daily designer coffee. Pay attention to the little spending. We also own three horses so when I know we are about to travel, I make sure all the big expenses are accounted for such as hay, grain, bedding, farrier, dentist, vet etc…
Are there expenses before you travel? Are you going to an area of the United States or world where you need to have different clothing etc… For me this comes into play when we are going to a warmer climate while New England is the middle of winter. No, I don’t need to buy new clothes for every trip. But I do have two growing children who tend to be in a different size by the time the warmer months come along. When we are preparing for those warmer months in February instead of May – I need to be prepared for those expenses.
Cooking or Dining or Combination of the two? Your spending is definitely impacted differently when it comes to food. Dining out all the time can be a killer. If we aren’t staying someplace with family – we always try to find a place to stay that has options to cook, even if it is just a microwave. While traveling we do like to eat out one meal per day. The rest of the day is snacks or something warmed up quickly.
Transportation? This is also a large expense and spending varies greatly based on mode of transportation. Are you flying? Driving? Do you need to rent a car? All of these should be placed on your “travel” credit card from Creditcards.com. It is easy to forget just how much each of these can cost on your next big excursion.
Where are we headed on our next trip?
With the help of my new American Express EveryDay Card our next trip will be to Epcot. We went two years ago during their flower and garden festival and we definitely want to go back. Our favorite aspect of this festival are the topiary displays. They are all around Epcot and there always seems to be something that we have missed. So much to see and beautiful days to enjoy them!
All your favorite Disney characters – as intricately designed topiaries.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.