We know it’s financially tough in Mzansi, and with the VAT increase that came into effect in April 2018, we wouldn’t want that affecting your travel plans.
Brand South Africa shared a few simple ways to help you improve your finances. These spending and saving habits, which are often overlooked, are easy to start implementing and incorporating in your daily lives.
If travelling is already scratched off your goals due to a lack of finances, here are a few steps to take now to help get you saving for that local or international visit later in the year.
SEE: #GapYear: Luxury accommodation on a budget
Daily spending habits
Are you buying cappuccinos every morning at the boutique coffee shop outside work, instead of catching your caffeine intake at home or the office? Are you guilty of taking an Uber down the road instead of walking?
These little daily expenses add up, and at the end of the month can cost you big. With an average cappuccino at R30 each and the shortest Uber trip costs a base fare of R20 – you’re spending R50 a day, R250 a working week and R1000 a month! That’s at least one domestic flight covered.
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Brand SA says that a cause of debt is people spending more money sustaining their lifestyle than they can afford. “Reducing expenses was number 4 on the South African lender Wonga’s survey of the most common financial resolutions for 2018,” says Brand SA, adding that whether it’s having too many takeaways or spending too much on alcohol, many people are “living beyond their means”.
Reduce your expenses by understanding where your money goes on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, then change your lifestyle and cut out those items you can do without.
Saving is a long-term reward that will help you achieve your 2018 travel goals. Putting aside R500 a month from January can result in a R6000 saving for #keDezemba – a generous spending amount especially if you’re exploring local destinations during the festive season, and can even cover your flights to some cheaper international destinations for South Africans.
SEE: 2018 #NoRegrets list: Top Destinations travellers should plan to visit
Use short-term credit wisely
“Short-term credit is one of the fastest growing financial products on the market today,” says Brand South Africa, adding that people need to understand when it is appropriate to access short-term credit, as well as learn how to differentiate between credit options.
Perhaps your best friend decides to get married at some exotic location, and you neither want to miss the major event, nor the opportunity to visit the destination, but you don’t have enough moola to book your flights. Then short-term credit can become a viable option to meet your travel plans, but must be managed responsibly.
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While Brand SA says that staying clear from this type of finance is good, people who do need it must understand the difference between good and bad debt and learn how to calculate the cheapest form of borrowing.
Whether you save, change your daily habits and budget or opt for short-term credit, we hope that you achieve your travel dreams through responsible financial planning.