Already excited to plan your summer trip? The past two summers have been very different because of the lockdowns. Beaches, parks, and hotels have operated under limited capacity. People were restricted from traveling to control the spread of the pandemic. Fortunately, Filipinos can now move around, interact with others, and live out of their pandemic bubble. A fun and memorable summer vacation is now possible!

However, before you go all out spending for your summer vacation, you have to be wiser financially, especially now that the global economy is in turmoil. After all, you can plan for a memorable and fun vacation that you deserve without spending beyond your means.

Being financially wiser is essential

While you’d want to make up for the summer vacations that you’ve missed the past two years, you still have to ensure that you will be in control of your spending. A study reveals wiser spending among young professionals or those considered millennials or Gen Zs. More Filipinos prefer to spend on their needs over their wants, and the majority of the respondents are afraid to incur debts or take loans. Furthermore, the pandemic has caused financial insecurity brought by uncertainties related to income loss or job loss.

Being financially wiser allows you to strategically allocate funds into savings, investments, emergencies, and even leisure. It enables a person to save for his/her goals, plan for the future, and prepare for uncertainties without sacrificing fun and relaxation. It also paves the way to live a balanced life to cover all aspects of life, from finances, health, relationships, and emotional well-being.

Financial awareness is key to becoming a wise spender. You can use Sun Life’s Expense Calculator to guide you in planning a fun and affordable summer vacation.
Learn more about it here.

8 smart tips to plan a fun and affordable summer trip

1. Set your budget before you book.

An essential step you should take before going on a summer vacation or any trip is budgeting. You have to determine how much you can afford to spend on your trip. Your budget should include transportation, food, entrance fees, accommodations, etc. Budget before you book so you can limit and adjust your expenses while your summer trip is still in the planning stage.

2. Spend on experiences.

When on a limited budget, you have to use your money wisely. It would be best to spend on the things that matter, like experiences. When on a limited budget, skip the souvenirs. Prioritize to explore adventures, especially those that you haven’t tried yet. You may be able to exhaust the budget you’ve set, but you’ll be certain that you have banked on unforgettable moments.

3. Take shorter trips.

Put quality over quantity. The most memorable summer vacations do not necessarily rely on how long the trip was. Visit nearby places with picturesque attractions to save airfare or gas costs. An overnight stay could also be as meaningful as a one-week vacation, depending on how you planned it to be. They also cost much less, which will keep you from worrying about your budget afterward.

4. Grab the best deals.

Don’t wait for your target date before you book. The best deals are usually offered months before they are intended to be used. Sign-up for promo alerts. If traveling by plane, keep an eye on seat sales so you can save more when traveling. There are deals on accommodations that you should keep tabs on to avail of the same packages at a lower cost.

6. Explore off the beaten tracks.

Be very smart in choosing the places to visit, especially when your budget is low. Tourist hotspots could be a trap. You can expect that almost everything would be more expensive in those destinations. One option is to explore off the beaten tracks. There are many hidden gems in the Philippines that you can explore near the places tourists frequent.

7. Search for free activities.

There are tourist attractions that you can explore for free. For instance, you can take a ‘walking tour’ to visit historical sites, cathedrals, and museums. You can also go on a food trip without choosing expensive restaurants. You’d be delighted to find local food served in less expensive restaurants or local banchettos. When planning a summer trip and budget is a concern, you can always choose what’s available without spending a fortune.

8. Bring the essentials.

Make a list of things you usually need and make sure that you’ll bring them with you. Medicines, first aid kits, sanitary kits, water, and snacks are usually priced higher in tourist spots. Pack them in your luggage. You’d appreciate the convenience and savings you’ll make in case you’ll need them.


ALSO READ: Smart steps to stay on track of your financial goals

You can still have fun while being financially wiser. Keep in mind that there will still be challenges even when the pandemic is finally over, and you have to prepare for them. Budget and plan your summer trip smartly so you won’t end up broke after your getaway.

Your summer trip is just one of the things that you should plan carefully. There are other important aspects that you should focus on to ensure financial wellness and a brighter future. Work with Sun Life as your Partner in Life. Our financial advisors can help you plan so you won’t miss opportunities to secure a better future for yourself and your loved ones.