How to Avoid Breaking the Bank on Your Next Road Trip
I loved when I was a kid and my family would hit the road and explore. Sometimes our road-trips were quick one-day drives to places like Canada, and other times, they'd last a whole week, but they were always memorable!
Let's say that you grew up the same and want your kids to experience what the open road is all about. You've saved your pennies for the ultimate summer road trip with your family. You've found the best deals on a hotel, installed a gas app so that you know the cheapest place to fill up, and you've packed a cooler with sandwiches to save on eating out. Sounds like you're on your way to a budget-friendly trip, right? Wrong.
Bad news. You're probably still going to annihilate your budget.
According to PR Newswire, Retail Me Not discovered that 95 percent of Americans end up spending more money than they budgeted for when they go on a road trip. So what's causing this massive budget fail? Basically the "moment."
Think about it this way- you've set a plan, but then the sunshine makes you all happy, and the wind in your hair makes you even happier, and you want the happy feelings to continue and so you stop by a roadside store and swipe your credit card for that adorable dancing hula girl for the dash of your car because she's a “once in a lifetime” buy and will remind you of this happiness you're feeling when you get back home.
There's nothing wrong with treating yourself to a couple of souvenirs, but instead of whipping out your credit card, set a budget and then load up a prepaid credit card and take a little bit of backup cash, leaving your credit card at home.
Another way you can help cut down on unnecessary expenses is to make a list before your trip of everything you'll need to pack, and we mean literally everything. Asprin, phone chargers, gum, whatever. As you pack each item, cross it off your list. By doing this, you'll save yourself from having to stop and buy forgotten things.