5 Ways You’re Missing the Opportunity to Travel More

Jennifer MeyerEveryday Budget TipsLeave a Comment

5 ways you're missing the opportunity to travel more - feature image

Imagine spending 1-2 weeks a year exploring an exotic destination and experiencing a new culture. Then, on various weekends throughout the year, you take marvelous weekend getaways where you relax and unwind.

Sounds amazing, doesn't it?

You're likely thinking that it sounds expensive and is therefor impossible.

But, here's the thing: you could actually live that life if you want to.

Instead of finding an excuse for why you can't do it, you need to find solutions so that you can do it.

Today, we're going to talk about 5 ways your spending habits are prohibiting you from living your best life.

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20 Ways to Prioritize Travel Now

Interested in getting serious about travel? I'll give you a downloadable PDF of 20 Easy Ways to Prioritize Tavel Now for FREE!

I'm Ready to Travel
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5 Ways You're Missing Out on Traveling More


1. You Have a Bad Attitude

There. I said it.

I mentioned this in the introduction, but it deserves more than a passing acknowledgement because it's critical.

If you believe that something is impossible, you won't try. And that's a terrible way to live.

This stops you from even having the opportunity to achieve your goal in the first place.

In the end, the only thing stopping you is your belief that it's not even worth trying.

You'd be amazed at what you're capable of if you let yourself try.

If you believe that something is impossible, you won't try. And that's a terrible way to live. Click To Tweet

Solution

Step 1: Change Your Attitude Through Practice

To fix this, you have to change your attitude.

The best way to change your attitude is through practice.

If you find yourself thinking negative thoughts, stop them and correct them.

You cannot wallow in self-pity because you wish your life was different and then do nothing to change it because you don't think it'll work out.

Take action.

Even if you think it's a long shot, take action. Do everything in your power to make your goals and dreams a reality.

I've struggled with this, so don't think you're alone.

One book changed my perspective on life and myself: You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero.

I highly recommend reading this book if you don't think you're living your best life.

She will whip you into shape and give you that nudge you need to go for your dreams and goals.

2. You Spend Money to Relieve Stress


Ever heard of "retail therapy"? Well, that's what this is, and it's a horrible way to spend your money. Why? Because it never fixes anything. It only wastes your money.

Instead of using that money to improve your life, you end up spending it on something useless.

I totally get it, though. I used to be incredibly guilty of this and still am on occasion.

Don't be fooled: this kind of mindless spending doesn't benefit you.

Instead of putting that extra $20 into a savings account for a trip, you're spending it on a cute shirt you don't need.

Let's get one thing straight: you shouldn't feel guilty about spending money. After all, it's one thing to spend money on a shirt you need. But, not all of your spending habits should be guilt-free. You need to evaluate your spending habits and identify the bad ones and eliminate them.

Don't feel like you're all alone in this. Everyone has bad spending habits. And, completely eliminating them might be damn near impossible (who doesn't like a treat every now and then?), but it shouldn't stop you from minimizing them as much as possible.

Solution

Step 1: Stop Going

First, you need to stop going to the place where you stress shop the most.

For me, this was Target. I was there all the time. It was so bad.

I love Target, and I still go, but I go waaaayyy less often.

Step 2: Find an Alternative Stress-Reliever

Next, you'll need to find a healthier habit to replace this with.

After all, you're shopping because you're stressed, and the stress isn't just going to go away.

I recommend working out instead. Take the time that you would have spent shopping and do a workout.

It's a natural stress reliever.

Plus, it doesn't have to cost you anything!

There are tons of free, at-home workouts you can find on Youtube.

Personally, I love Blogilates. Cassey is amazing and super energetic.

If working out doesn't tickle your fancy, you can always find a hobby that is relaxing.

For example, I have a friend who relaxes by baking and knitting.

When I'm particularly stressed, I like to write. Sometimes that means writing a blog post and other times I'm just writing for myself in a journal.

Try a few things out. You'll eventually find something that works even better than retail therapy!

3. You Eat Out. All. The. Time.


This is a big one.

Everyone loves convenience.

And, let's face it, there's nothing more convenient that going out to eat.

It takes not preparation or forethought and there's no mess to clean up afterwards. It's perfection.

However, like all things, you have to pay for that convenience, and it comes at a pretty price.

Even if you eat out only 3 times per week, that around $30 extra dollars that you're spending because you feel like it.

That's an extra $120 a month out the window.

And you think you can't afford to travel abroad?

If you switched to eating at home, which I understand can be a huge sacrifice, you'd save $1,440 over the course of a year.

You think that's enough to take a seriously epic vacation?

And, that's with only one change to your spending habits.

Solution

Step 1: Stop Eating Out

The solution for this one is simple: stop eating out.

However, while the answer is simple, it becomes much more difficult in practice.

Step 2: Identify Why You Were Eating Out

In order to make this change stick, you need to identify why you're not wanting to eat at home.

Do you not like cooking? Is eating out more convenient? Do you go out with friends a lot?

You need to be super honest with yourself.

Once you determine why it is you love eating out so much, you will be able to make some changes to the way you cook at home to make it easier for you.

Step 3: Improve Your Experience Eating at Home

If you don't like cooking, find some simple recipes that don't require much time. There are plenty of cook books that offer recipes you can make in hardly any time at all. You can also invest in a crock pot and make super easy meals with it.

While it doesn't eliminate cooking, it allows you to spend less time in the kitchen cooking.

If you find that eating out is more convenient, you should try some of those quick recipes I mentioned above. You'd probably also find a crock pot useful.

Additionally, you could purchase some frozen veggies. While these are more expensive than fresh veggies, they will save you quite a bit of time in the kitchen.

Lastly, if you go out with friends a lot, try inviting them over for dinner instead. While it's okay to go out and have fun every now and again, you won't want it to be something that happens too often.

When you invite your friends over, ask them each to bring a side or an appetizer or wine. This way, everyone is contributing, and you can all save some money!

No matter your reason for eating out, you need to come up with creative solutions so that you hardly miss it.

These solutions will help you stick to your plan, even when the going gets tough.

4. You Pay for Convenience


Paying for convenience goes beyond eating out when you can make a meal at home.

Items that are more convenient cost more.

You're spending money to free up some of your valuable time, which I understand.

For example, in the previous section, I suggest that you purchase frozen veggies because they're more convenient. While they are more convenient, you'll certainly spend more on frozen veggies than fresh ones.

You don't have to completely stop paying for convenience. You'll just want to be careful of how often you do it.

You could easily purchase cut fruit, but it would be much cheaper to buy it whole and cut it yourself.

Solution

Step 1: Choose the Most Important Convenience Items

The solution to this one is a little more complex than you might think.

You could simply cut out convenience items completely, but you will likely start hating everything because things that used to be simple are now more difficult and time consuming.

Now, you're not going to be willing to sacrifice all of your conveniences, and I'd be a horrible hypocrite to suggest that you should!

So, you'll need to pick and choose which convenience items are more important to you.

Plus, in some instances, you can pay for a little bit of convenience or even more convenience.

Does it sound like I'm rambling?

Let me give you an example.

If you purchase coffee from establishments like Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, or even a Gas Station convenience mart, you could easily make coffee at home and save a ton of money.

Sure, purchasing it hot and ready at the store is more convenient, but it costs more.

Step 2: Understand that the Cheapest Option Isn't Always the Best

I purchase things that are convenient sometimes simply because they're convenient. And there's nothing wrong with that.

However, when possible, I opt for the cheaper, more time consuming alternative.

Still, just because you're trying to save money doesn't mean you need to purchase cheapest, least convenient option.

Sound counter intuitive? Let me tell you a story.

I used to purchase an iced coffee on the way to work every day.

It was my favorite part of my morning, and I wasn't willing to give it up until I realized that I was spending $20 a week on coffee...

Finally, I decided to use a Keurig, which my household received as a gift (yay). While the brewing a cup of coffee in the Keurig is much more expensive than brewing a cup of coffee in a pot, I discovered that I very much enjoy a certain type of coffee that is only sold in K-cups.

Since I had already felt as though I had made a sacrifice, I didn't want to abandon my newest coffee obsession.

I found out that Costco sells these K-cups in bulk for a lot less than the average grocery store sells them for.

So, I tagged along with someone who has a Costco membership and purchased them!

I know that was a long story about coffee, but the point is that you don't have to always choose the cheapest option. As long as you're saving enough money, you can splurge a little bit on things that are still important to you.

In my case, I'm a really picky coffee drinker. So, it's difficult for me to find a coffee I enjoy.

5. You're Not Making Travel a Priority


Some of the other items on this list actually fall into this category, but this is hugely important, so I'm going to mention it anyway.

I know that you have a lot of priorities.

Your money goes to a lot of important things: rent/mortgage, retirement fund, savings, investments, time with friends and family, etc.

Those are all important things that you should definitely be putting money towards. Don't stop funding them.

However, there are likely less important things you spend money on that you're prioritizing over travel without even realizing it.

If you're not saving money to travel because you don't think you have any to save, the things that you are spending money on are automatically more important to you than traveling.

For example, if you purchase 6 Lattes from Starbucks a month, you are saying that those Lattes are more important to you than traveling.

You don't NEED those 6 Lattes. You want them, but you don't need them.

Sure, going through life without the things you like would suck, but do you really need all 6 of those Lattes?

What if you decided to cut back to having only 2 Lattes a month.

That could save you $20 a month that you can put towards a vacation!

You still can have the Lattes you enjoy, just not as often.

You need to make sacrifices to fund your travel dreams. But you don't have to sacrifice everything you enjoy.

You need to make sacrifices to fund your travel dreams. But you don't have to sacrifice everything you enjoy. Click To Tweet

Solution

Step 1: Identify Your Bad Spending Habits

In order to know what you're prioritizing over travel, you need to look at your bank and credit card statements (or receipts if you use cash).

This should reveal at least a few areas where you spend money needlessly.

If you don't usually pay much attention to these statements, what you find might be a bit shocking.

Step 2: Create a Realistic Budget

Once you've identified the areas that you tend to spend too much money, you need to create a budget.

Be careful cutting something out completely. I don't know about you, but that never works out well for me!

Make small changes that you can actually stick with.

You can also lean out your budget more next month, if you need to.

Make sure that the money you save is going to actually get put into your vacation fund. If it just sits in your checking account, you might spend it...

20 Ways to Prioritize Travel Now

Interested in getting serious about travel? I'll give you a downloadable PDF of 20 Easy Ways to Prioritize Tavel Now for FREE!

I'm Ready to Travel
Image

Stop Missing Out on Travel

If you're ready to stop letting money be an excuse for you not to travel, it's time to take action!

You have control over your money, not the other way around.

It's okay to start small.

If you want, you can make one small change.

For example, you could purchase one less coffee each week. That's super simple, small, and achievable!

Eventually, you'll need to add more changes.

It won't be easy to change your habits, but if you truly want to travel, it will be well-worth the small sacrifices you make every day.

I believe in you!

Your dreams are worth it.

Just do it!

Talk soon,

P.S.

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