How to holiday: “The economy, stupid!”

By Anthony Haynes

August 14, 2013

Category: Beyond publishing


The ninth of ten posts, published each work day, on the rules I set myself to create a successful holiday. The rules work for me: I hope they’re of some use to readers to. But they won’t suit everybody. You’re v. welcome to let me know how it’s different for you – and what your own rules might be.

My ninth ‘rule’ is I guess the least contentious. It is simply ‘Budget for expenditure!

Recently on holiday I spent about 20 Euros on a meal. Is that good news or bad?

The answer depends entirely on how much I budgeted. If I budgeted 15 Euros per meal, it’s bad news; if I budgeted 25, it’s good. But if I haven’t budgeted at all, I have no way of knowing.

On our annual holiday in Scarborough (on England’s east coast), we spend what I consider a good deal of money. But for several years now the total expenditure has come in at less than expected, which is a good way of making a good holiday feel even better.

The most difficult items to budget are those that come heading ‘latte factor’ – the small treats and incidentals that unfortunately add up. I find that when money seems to be flowing away like water, it’s usually the latte factor that is to blame. Estimating the average cost of a latte or soft drink, ice cream, etc.) realistically and then deciding how many times a day to say ‘Yes’ is, I think, key to the art of holiday budgeting.


2 Responses to “How to holiday: “The economy, stupid!””

  1. Those little thoughtless expenses cause havoc with the everyday budget as well! Sometimes it’s hard, I think, not to indulge while on vacation, as you’re already breaking from the normal and treating yourself just by being there. Perhaps instead of trying to figure out the cost of small things in advance, one could allocate a total amount to be spent on incidentals, and when it’s gone, it’s gone?

    • That’s v. much my approach to gambling at a race track – decide how much you’re prepare to say goodbye to, put it in a pocket, when the pocket’s empty, you’re done.

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