Road Trip Explore! California--Sequoia National Park

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How to Save Money for Your Next Road Trip Adventure

@RoadTripExplore  #RoadTripExplore

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Updated March 3, 2016

Challenge yourself to save money for travel adventures, vacations or road trips.  It’s all about trade-offs and what is most desired. 

A surprising amount of money can accumulate in a money jar with a few changes in how things are managed in daily life.  

Throw in the gift of time and that dream trip will come true. In the end, it’s the little things that add up to big dollars, even pennies.  

Clean out Clutter & Save Money

Gold Brick Style Coin Bank

All that stuff collecting dust in the storage facility and eating up dollars in monthly fees is a two-for-one bonus!  

Empty that storage closet or garage and close the account.  

  • Put the monthly fee into the money jar.  

Sell the stuff in a garage sale, on EBay or Craigslist.  

Consider ways to recycle, donate, gift or repurpose stuff.  

  • Put the profits into the money jar.  

Save Money by Eating Better & Cooking Less Often

DIY Money Coin Saving Milk Box Shaped Piggy Bank Pink Khaki

Dining at home on meals full of wholesome ingredients instead of eating out at restaurants not only saves money, but is healthier.  

Embark on a culinary adventure and learn how to cook vegetarian meals for meatless Monday.

Choose recipes that stretch ingredients and make great leftovers to freeze for days when cooking is a challenge, or to put in the lunch box for work or school.  Try Rustic Lentil Soup, Cat's Split Pea Soup, or rediscover casseroles and recipes from the Great Depression.  

Involve all family members when cooking to make the chore less work for one.  Couples enjoy date night together learning to cook a new recipe.  Build memories and reap the benefit of quality family time while passing on special recipes and traditions; children love to learn to cook with parents and can be surprisingly helpful.  

Get creative or find ideas online for exciting picnic menus to pack for day outings.  

Make food dollars stretch by sticking to a grocery list and shopping the perimeter of the store; shop on a full stomach because more is purchased when hunger strikes.  Save even more by buying and eating only foods on sale and at reduced prices; an adventure in menu planning.  Be sure to group shopping trips with other errands to save on time and gas dollars.  

BYOB—Be Your Own Barista; at $5.00 per cup, per day, those fancy coffee shop drinks add up to quick savings.  The grocery store has some great hot drink ingredients, and gourmet recipes can be found online.  

  • That money jar is filling fast with all these savings!

Get Healthy & Save Money

Football Digital Coin Counting Bank

Tobacco and alcohol are expensive habits that rob health and quality of life.  Making the change is only one committed decision away—just go do it.  There’s nothing more important than robust health so a high quality of life can be enjoyed.  

Ditch those season tickets.  Quit sitting on the sidelines leading a vicarious sports life.  Join a neighborhood sports team and become a legend, or give back to the community by coaching a kids’ team.  

  • Plunk the savings into the money jar.

Re-think Entertainment

Incredible reads can be had from the local library.  Most libraries also offer music CD’s, Video’s, DVD’s, and eBooks. 

Cancel subscriptions to periodicals and borrow them from the library instead.  Some libraries will even ship items to the borrower at no charge with prepaid return packaging. 

Better yet, instead of watching TV or playing video games after work, get a part-time evening job.

  • Pour those savings and earnings into the money jar.

Do-It-Yourself & Save Money

Road Trip Explore! Money Jar Candy Dish
Road Trip Explore! Money Jar

Fire the maid and handyman.

Cancel lawn service.

Dry clean your clothes in your own dryer.

Wash the car at home.

  • Keep the money flowing into the money jar.  Cha-ching!

Change-up Gifting

Lil Saver Favor Ceramic Mini-Piggy Bank in Gift Box with Polka-Dot Bow

Make gift giving easy.  Holidays and birthdays are a great time to request cash in lieu of flowers or a tie. 

If it’s the thought that counts, quit overspending on gifts to others. 

Re-gift those things that might otherwise be tossed.

Invest in relationships by spending quality time together doing things with or for loved ones. Building memories like these last a lifetime. 

Better yet, go on the trip together. 

Save together; two can travel cheaper than one. 

  • The stash in the money jar just doubled!

Reconsider that Purchase to Save Money

Road Trip Explore! Money Jar Candy Dishes
Road Trip Explore! Money Jar

Most purchases can be avoided by waiting.  Time has a way of distinguishing wants from real needs. Basic needs include food, clothing and shelter; everything else is negotiable, and will probably wait, or end up as a discarded idea.

Whenever possible make do with what is at hand, use it up, mend it and wear it out.  

Try to do without.  

Stick with the tired and true.  Household items and quality clothing in classic styles that span seasonal trends..

Buy pre-owned or used.  Remember those household items and quality clothing?  They can be purchased at greatly reduced prices from resell shops and second hand stores for a fraction of the price of new.  

Make everything do double duty.  Each purchase should be multiuse in order to get the most value for the money spent.  

  • Stretching cash in this way adds value to the dollars accruing in the money jar.

Tweak Household Routines

Hallmark Money Jar Sand Dollars

Turn off the lights. 

Wear a sweater and turn down the thermostat in winter. 

Forget turning on the air conditioning in the summer, except on the few hottest days of the year.  Let in early morning and evening air to cool the house; close doors, windows and drapes against the sun and heat of the day. 

Hot water and dryers wear out clothes faster.  Preserve precious energy by washing clothes in cold water and hanging to dry. 

  • Deposit the savings into the money jar.

Bankroll the Money Box

Wooden Money Box Wooden

Save that pocket change, pennies too!  Over the course of the year pocket change can add up to $50 or more.  

Dedicate reimbursement checks, bonuses and raises to the travel fund.  

  • Stuff the money box until the lid won’t close.

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