Life can be expensive. Even before the recent inflation in fuel and home energy bills, it could be a struggle for many households to get by from day to day. And you always seem to be trying to save up for something, whether it’s a new car, the best natural wood cabinets for your kitchen, or your child’s college education.

But relaxation time is important too, and they should not see a big family holiday as an extravagant purchase. If you work hard to earn money and raise your children you deserve some time to destress, let your hair down, and make memories with your loved ones. But a holiday doesn’t come cheap. Spending two weeks in another country will always take a toll on your finances as you have to factor in travel fares, accommodation, meals out, and any planned activities and entertainment. Not to mention the fact that you’re still going to be paying your utility bills, insurance, and mortgage while you’re gone.

If you plan ahead and are careful with your money management, you will be able to put enough aside to enjoy your upcoming holiday. To get you started, here are five tips for saving money for your next vacation.

Fastest Ways to Budget For a Vacation

Set a goal

Work out how much you will need for your ideal vacation and you will have a fixed target to aim for. Make sure you include a little extra in this figure or emergencies or unplanned expenses. With this goal in mind, you can then start working on your finances and building a pot to reach it. Seeing your progress as your savings increase will help to keep you motivated.

Create a household budget
One of the best money management tips is to create a budget for your entire household. This should outline exactly how much money you have coming in each month, plotted against your outgoings such as bills and mortgage payments. This will give you an idea of how much you can reasonably put aside each month and tell you roughly how long it will take to reach your goal.

Eliminate unnecessary expenses
By looking at your outgoings, you should be able to identify any areas where you are spending money unnecessarily. Perhaps you have a gym membership you rarely use or are paying for a Netflix account when you could be sharing a password with a friend. Be strict with yourself and ask yourself whether each expense is worth it.

Use discounts
When shopping for groceries, clothes, or other household essentials, try to find discounts and sales wherever you can. You can often find these on voucher code sites or brand Facebook pages. Look for bargains in the supermarket and capitalize on these where possible.

Eliminate waste
So much food waste gets thrown away by households every day, but by being a little smarter with your meals, you can eliminate waste and reduce your expenses. Plan your weekly meals and make a list when you go shopping so that you only buy what you need.