We’re having a blast here in Los Angeles. The weather is nice and we’re hanging out (and working a bit) over at E3. Exploring the area has been fun and I’ve drained my phone’s battery a couple of times from using it for everything, including maps and Gowalla.

I’m hoping the rest of the trip will continue to go as smoothly and look forward to getting my pictures up.

Trying Something Different

We went out for dinner with friends and had a fantastic time last night. The  food was good and the company was incredible. We caught up with old friends and met some new ones.

Looking at the menu, we saw it was more expensive than we planned. I was thinking of splitting a plate, but my husband said we could get our own entrees (he was hungry!), we just couldn’t go overboard.

While I won’t make a habit of spending that money in our regular budget, it did feel nice to do something different and not stress out over the bills.

Debt Free Vacation -Avoiding Stress Later

It’s weird because years ago when I went on vacations using my credit card, I didn’t too much while I was on the trip, but I caused stress for myself for the next several months as I had to adjust my budget and pay it off.

Now we worry a bit before as we work towards our budgeting goals, but come back feeling relaxed and recharged. What was spent has been spent; no credit cards bills to worry about.

Start a Vacation Fund and Build It Up

Debt free vacations start with having a vacation fund started and filled. I would start small and automate your deposits on a regular basis.

You can either have a separate account for your vacation or you can keep in your general savings with a spreadsheet to keep track. What should you consider when determining how much you need? Here are some basic ideas:

  • Transportation
  • Hotel
  • Food
  • Local Activities (Theme parks, festivals, etc)
  • Misc. (Souvenirs, car trouble, etc)

It’s not too difficult to have a debt free vacation, it just takes a bit of time and planning. We try to save money with ING’s free automatic transfers. Wachovia also offers a nice Way2Save account that can also help you to reach your goal.

Your Thoughts on Debt Free Vacations

Do you try to have debt free vacations? What was the best trip you’ve had?