Pretty much without fail, the one goal that every H.E.N.R.Y.™ includes in their Stash Plan™ is to "travel more". Traveling seems to be a non-negotiable for our generation. Say what they will about us but unlike those who came before, we prioritize experiences over things and travel is at the heart of those priorities. We are less about accumulating stuff and more about accumulating memories (especially instagrammable ones!).
Last year, the place to make memories seemed to be Thailand. Most clients went there or were planning to go there. While on our various meetings, we got to hear plenty of the do's and a few of the don'ts. "Chang Mai was better than Bangkok," "Eat the street food," "Spend time on the beaches", "Save time for the temples..." what were we talking about again? Oh yes, travel is a very important goal!
If you've worked with Stash, you know that we are all about helping you achieve your goals, especially the fun ones like traveling more and upgrading your lifestyle. Here are some of our simple but surefire ways to ensure you can step away from your busy life every once in awhile and transport yourself into the destination of your choice - so hop on Instagram for inspiration and start making a list!
Set Up A Designated Account
At an online bank (we like CapitalOne360) open up a savings account specifically for your travel savings. Do not commingle this money with your Emergency Fund. At CapitalOne360 you can have up to 25 savings accounts (for free), not that we'd recommend that many.
Studies show that if you're savings account is nicknamed according to what you're saving for (i.e. travel fund), you're much more likely to stick to the plan. Not all banks will let you change the name of the account, but most online banks will. And we say go one step further and change the name of the account to match your destination. So if this year's big trip is to Hawaii, nickname the account accordingly. It's so much easier to resist dipping into your savings when you know that you're essentially robbing yourself of Mai Tais in Maui.
If you try to plan to save what's left over after you pay your bills, nothing ever will be. The trick is to save first. If you want $3500 per year to splurge on travel, set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to your new travel savings account either once a month ($291) or once every 2 weeks ($185). Whatever's left over is your spending money for the month.
Accumulate Rewards Points
Last year we wrote a piece for Refinery29 that got a lot of flak and I mean, A LOT...just check out the comments! The piece was about why you should never ever use a debit card. We advocate that monthly purchases should go on your credit card. Now we aren't saying to spend more than you can afford to pay off each month, but we are saying that if you're going to spend your money anyway, you might as well do it in a way that earns you rewards points. Not to mention fraud protection, price protection and an opportunity to build your credit score.
Use this savings account framework for other priorities too, like an emergency fund, holiday gifts accounts and even a new baby fund. Don't leave your travel opportunities up to chance. Set the money aside in an automated fashion and you'll never have to wonder when you'll be able to afford your next big trip.
Life is short and there are so many places to visit! Where are you going next.