Everyone loves a good vacation. Unfortunately, many Americans are so ready to jet-off somewhere warm or fun that they are willing to go into debt to travel. Almost 75 percent of Americans have gone into debt for a trip, with the average debt topping more than $1,000.
If you’re dreaming of getting out of your house once quarantines and shelter-in-place orders are lifted, but don’t want to go into debt to do so, keep reading. We’re bringing you three smart investments that every frugal traveler should make in 2020 to save cash, keep themselves safe, and still enjoy a first-class trip.
1. An Open Mind
One of the best ways to save money while you travel without sacrificing an incredible adventure is to keep an open mind. This year, invest some time in researching some lesser-known destinations. While your favorite tourist traps might be tempting, odds are that you can find many of the same attractions, great views, and awesome amenities in other cities, regions, or countries, but at a fraction of the price.
Planning a trip to Disney World? Save money on your hotel by staying in Kissimmee instead of Orlando. Dreaming of a tropical vacation? Head to Oahu instead of Maui for a cheaper Hawaiian adventure.
2. Supplies for the Hotel Room
When you’re on a budget, hotels are one of the biggest areas that you’ll likely look to save on. Unfortunately, that can mean giving up on those five-star amenities that you crave. Luckily, there are a few simple things you can bring from home to make your stay feel a bit more luxurious.
Packing a small hotel kit can ensure that you have what you need, even if your budget hotel doesn’t. Your favorite coffee or tea, as well as a travel mug to save you from heading straight to a coffee shop in the morning, will save you money without you having to sacrifice your caffeine fix. Your own shampoo, conditioner, and body wash will help you avoid a bad hair day that could result from the cheap options provided from the hotel — or save you if the hotel doesn’t provide any.
Sometimes a cheaper hotel also means a space that hasn’t been as carefully cleaned as your favorite resort. If you’re worried about germs, hand sanitizer, your own pillowcases, and a pair of slippers to get you from the bathroom to your bedside are also must-haves.
3. Life Insurance
It’s something that most of us don’t want to think about. But the spread of the coronavirus has brought this taboo topic back to the forefront.
No matter how carefully you plan your vacation or how seemingly safe your adventure seems, traveling always comes with inherent dangers. From viruses spreading like wildlife in a cruise ship to more common dangers, like falls or car wrecks, accidents happen.
But protecting yourself while you travel isn’t the only thing you should think about. If the worst happened while you were away, how would your family handle paying for your funeral? Would your spouse or partner be able to pay the mortgage or other bills with the sudden loss of your income? Would you be leaving your kids with money for college or other expenses?
Life insurance is an investment that every traveler needs to make before he or she leaves home. With USAA life insurance, you can choose the policy that works for you and your family. While permanent life insurance will help make sure that your family is provided for no matter when you pass, you can also use term life insurance to protect your family while you’re away on a specific vacation. This is a great option for those who aren’t ready to pay for a permanent policy yet, but who are worried about the added risks of a big international adventure or cross-country road trip.
Making Smart Investments in 2020
The new decade is off to a rocky start with the spread of COVID-19. When traveling for fun becomes possible again in the coming months, it’ll be more important than ever before to stay healthy and safe during your adventures. These smart investments can help you protect yourself and your family without sacrificing an incredible trip, no matter where you choose to roam in 2020 and beyond!