Roadtrip Mistake

Roadtrip Mistake

It is official…I’ve dropped the ball. With all of the craziness from our extended weekend trip, I forgot to schedule something for today! I had planned on something but between seven hours of driving (1 unscheduled stop), carrying a toddler up and down the stairs for every water slide, and learning my son screams at his brother in his sleep (can’t he just talk like a normal person?!)…I’m a little exhausted.

Not All Is Lost

I do, however, have a little wisdom for the week. Vacations suck! I’ve read it before but we hadn’t gone on any trips since Mini Donut was born so I forgot how much stress is involved. Planning, researching, executing. I think I was tired before we left! It really is true that you need a vacation from the vacation. You try to push as much “fun” into the little time you have that it stops being fun. Some family member is bound to cause drama (this time it was the middle sister and my dad).

I long for a nonchalant trip. A “we get there when we get there” and if not “whatever” sort of thing. However, that isn’t very likely to happen when you are only allotted so many days a year to not work (some call this “personal time off”). More and more reasons for FIRE. Regular jobs ruin vacations.

I’m An Idiot

Worst of all me, the freaking personal finance blogger, didn’t have any plan at all on how to manage the spending during the trip! I forgot about all the little transactions that burn through cash on trips. Snacks there, gas here, shopping over there, more gas again. Clearly, we need to do something different if we want to make this an every year thing.

I’ve determined events like these are anomalies and therefore should be treated as such.

We’ve already created a “bucket” in the savings that is money allocated for vacations but perhaps it’s time to give it a promotion! I’m thinking about creating a new savings account just for trips (this is more ceremonial). Then if when we go on a trip, those transactions are filtered through once we get back (key part so not to mess with the fun) and ones that are clearly trip related are wiped out with savings money.

This will keep the normal budget from getting messed with when all it wants to do is pay the normal month to month activities!

Short And Sweet

That’s all I got for you this week but I’m super excited about what is coming next week! For now, I’m going to find some ibuprofen and an ice pack for my back. Just happy to be sleeping in my own bed tonight.

Got any fun trips planned this year? How do you usually pay for yours?

4 thoughts on “Roadtrip Mistake

  1. I hear you on this. Have to admit that vacations are not the same since the kids were born. They are tiring, more expensive and more frustrating.
    The biggest trick which helped me the most keeping my sanity is not having unrealistic expectations. When we went on holiday for the first time with our one-year-old daughter I was pretty sure when we started planning the trip that it will be tough and extremely hard. Basically, we started off as we were mentally prepared for a “disaster”. And magically when it goes relatively ok all the way you are surprised and started to feel that “hey, this is not that bad at”. So yeah, vacations changed in its nature, but that is true for every other aspect of life with kids. The saying “Hope for the best and prepare for the worst” works pretty fine in these cases.
    This year we have plans on visiting Greece. I am a shitty budgeter as you may know from the Money Road Map series, but having sufficient funds for vacation early on is a must have (otherwise my wife would kill me :)). We applied three tricks in our planning this year so far. First we reserved the transportation and the apartment pre-season for a season end date. Second we saved up the costs upfront from my last years bonus. And third, to have some help we are travelling with grandparents. I have no such experience so far but I am sure we will be ok. The kids love spending time with them so we will have at least few hours just for us with the wife :). Sounds like a win-win situation.
    [HCF] recently posted…How to get over your financial hangover

    1. I am very much a “hope for the best, prepare for the worst”

      Greece sounds like a lot of fun! I’m sure you all are going to rock it with that plan!

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