10 Tips for Saving and Side-Hustling Your Way To Vacation
Between jobs paying less for more work, expenses increasing, and high debt from college loans, many of us live on a tight budget. But, limiting vacation time or even foregoing vacation altogether isn’t a healthy option. With a couple of spare hours per month, you can side-hustle your way to extra money for a vacation of your dreams. Saving a couple of bucks here and there also wouldn’t hurt anyone’s budget. As a frequent traveler who lives on a budget, I want to share the exact methods I’ve used to budget and side-hustle my way to vacation.
1. Consider each purchase
Although I enjoy shopping, I’m really careful about the purchases I make since that money could be saved for travel. Next time you’re online shopping or at the mall, think carefully about whether or not you need that new pair of shoes — it might even help to think about how many hours of work that new item “costs.”
2. Consign old clothing
If you have clothes, shoes, or accessories hanging around in your closet that you haven’t worn in ages or are ill fitting, you might consider selling these items. While some areas have great consignment rates, others have limited options, so the online route might sometimes be the way to go. Websites like Poshmark and Vinted let you set a price for each item of clothing, while ThredUp gives you a set price for only the items they decide to sell. Whatever option you choose, you could make a fair bit of extra money.
3. Hold a yard sale or sell items online
I’ve been really working on minimizing the amount of things I have, yet I still uncover dusty boxes of old toys, books, and collectables. If you search your home for disused items, you’ll probably be surprised by what you’ll find. Selling these items can easily make you a couple of bucks that can later be cashed in for a nice meal while on vacation.
4. Take up a side job
If you have a bit of spare time on evenings or weekends, you might consider picking up a spare job, such as dog walking, babysitting, or gardening, to earn an extra income.
5. Look for ways to save
I’m always on the look-out for ways to save a bit of money on my everyday expenses. Religiously unplugging and turn off electrical items when not in use might seem really minor, but the savings do add up. Also, checking insurance, cell phone, internet, and TV plans can also lead to significant monthly savings.
Related: 5 Money Saving Tips For Planning A Last Minute Getaway
6. Make your own lunches
Though this is nothing new, the savings from making your lunch at home can really add up. I’m really not into meal planning and prep for a whole week, but thinking far enough in advance to make lunch the night before work is a huge money saver.
7. Find free things to do for entertainment
I’m definitely the last person to say give up entertainment and stay in to save money — I love to try new things! But, being a touch frugal when it comes to fun outside of work can add a bit more wiggle room into your budget. My entertainment generally all relates to good food shared with good friends, but eating out multiple times per week adds up. Instead, I look for happy hour deals and specials, or restaurants that are more budget-friendly like cafes or street food stands.
8. Get a library card
Whether you prefer to read on an e-reader or a tangible book, completely cutting books out of your budget can be huge if you read a lot. Sign up for a library card at your nearest library and you’ll be able to borrow books and e-books for free!
Libraries also offer a lot of free entertainment options as well as discounts (especially for area parks and museums), so this could be another way for you to save money.
9. Use your talents
Perhaps you are a really great artist, talented writer, or great at math but don’t use these skills often. Tapping into these interests can help you earn an extra income on the side. Tutoring can be sought out by placing an ad in the paper or searching online. Artists could try their hand at selling their work on a print on demand site and writers could pitch to a wide variety of online publications. While these side-hustles require more experience and time than others, they could turn into an awesome and lucrative pastime.
10. Sign up for loyalty cards and use coupons
I forgot about loyalty cards until recently, and boy was I missing out on big savings. Using loyalty cards, like those for drugstores or grocery stores, can provide huge savings. Similarly, coupons used in conjunction with sales and/or loyalty cards can sometimes bring down a price to nearly free!