Karen Tang, CFP®: Certified Financial Planner in Singapore

Let The Fund Begin!

With the significant relaxation of Covid-19 protocols, many of us are already making plans to travel with family and friends. In this article, I will share with you how you can effectively save money for your dream trips.

This article was published in Scoot inflight magazine, November 2019 issue.

Start Early

For a big year-end vacation, begin saving at the start of the year. Otherwise, three to six months in advance may suffice.

Determine How Much You Need 

Use these factors to help estimate the cost of your trip:

  • The exchange rate
  • The prices of activities you’re interested in doing
  • Your accommodation
  • Whether you’re going free and easy or joining a tour
  • Your meals
  • What you’d want to buy there and
  • Travel insurance

When you’re creating a budget, give yourself a 20 per cent buffer – any overflow can

count towards your next trip.

Set Up A Dedicated Travel Savings Account 

Set aside a fixed sum each month in a savings account. Yes, the interest rate from a savings accounts is negligible, but it allows your funds to stay readily available. This is a risk-free approach, unlike investments which sometimes take years to be profitable, are subject to market volatility, and may have limitations related to withdrawal.

Live Within Your Means and Reduce Unnecessary Spending

These small changes can help you reach your savings target

  • Write a shopping list before heading for the supermarket and stick to it. 
  • Do not save your credit card details online so you won’t be tempted to shop. 
  • Bring packed lunches to work. 
  • Eat more frequently at home. 
  • Implement a cash-only policy during the week. 
  • Share subscription services with family and friends. 
  • Leverage websites or apps that offer deals and discounts on food, goods, and services. 
  • Slash your shopping
    You don’t need the latest smartphone, latest video game release, 4 different shades of lipstick or new clothes every month.
  • Reduce your utilities
    For instance, turn down your air conditioning and use a fan, unplug electronics when not in use, take shorter showers.  

What other daily expenses can you replace with money-saving habits?

Keep Track of Your Expenses 

Tracking your expenses will help you spot any spending issues you may have so you can make adjustments accordingly to reach your financial goals. To start, download a

budgeting and expenses tracking app. Some examples are Wally, Wallet, Spendio, Spendee, Spending Tracker, Seedly and Pocket Expense. If you’re already using an app, that’s great!

I hope the above is helpful. With some thoughtful planning and by saving diligently, you can make all your travel dreams come true!22222

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