Spending at the Holidays without Sacrificing Next Year's Family Vacation Getaway

Let’s face it. At one time or another, we have all allowed ourselves to become so consumed by… well… consumerism… that by the end of the holidays, our piggy banks are squealing with hunger.

And what do we do to feed our pink friends? We scale back on the following year’s family vacation getaway, choosing a not-so-hot spot (did someone say Uncle Larry’s dilapidated hunting cabin?) instead of one of the best family vacation spots ever.

So what’s a typical parent to do? Turn a blind eye toward the holiday season and hope the kids don’t notice? Pretend that a tree isn’t something special? Eschew all gift-giving?


Really, the average family doesn’t have to agonize or stop celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas or Kwanzaa. Instead, they just need to be a little more thoughtful about where their finances are going.

To keep you and your loved ones on a path to a fabulous family vacation getaway in ’08, why not try some of these easy-to-implement strategies for keeping within a reasonable budget during November and December:

– Try not to eat at restaurants all the time. If you’re going to be at the mall or shopping center for several hours (or over lunch time), pack some snacks in your purse or bag. That way, you won’t be tempted to spend $20, $30 or more on munchies.

– Look for sales, but don’t skimp on value. Sure, you may be able to get 10 sweaters for $75 at a discount warehouse, but double-check the quality of those items. Will they just fall apart in a month, meaning you’ll wind up shelling out more cash before winter’s over for replacement sweaters?

– Make a budget and stick to it. So many families say they’ll only spend “X” amount of dollars each holiday season, and then they go overboard. If you need to, take cash with you rather than relying on credit cards. That way, you’ll be able to see exactly how much moolah you have remaining.

– Concentrate on experiences, not stuff. Many adults and children have become disenchanted with all the holiday hype and expectations. So if you’re discovering you’re getting too stressed, take a weekend or two and kick back. Relaxing will be good for your soul, your relationship and your pocketbook!

Want more family vacation getaway tips? Come back next week when GuestQuests gurus provide more advice!

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