To save or to spend – isn’t that the ultimate question?
Many people wrestle with this issue their entire lives, swinging to one and then back to the other – much to their own enjoyment and frustration. It’s never a good idea to spend every bit you make and leave nothing for emergencies or the future (we will all get old at some point!), but it’s equally bad to scrimp and save with no real goal in mind. Life is too short to never to anything fun, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to do everything fun all the time. Finding the balance is a fine act that once perfected (or at least attempted) can lead to great overall life satisfaction.
When it comes to travel, the best thing to do is save up to spend. You can use a cash ISA account to plan out your trip well in advance and continue to draw benefits for the future, which is a much better place to put your hard earned money than in that box under your bed.
And here’s why:
1. Gives you a Goal – So many people talk about traveling but never do it. Opening an ISA and labeling it something like ‘Trip Fund’ will give the dream a real life form and ensures you actually do the things you set out to do instead of getting distracted – which can often happen.
2. Keep Track of Your Money – Some people spend money as fast as they make it, or faster, but if you use online banking you can watch all of your transactions. You can see that you have money coming in on a certain date and that you have money going out on another. It helps take some of the surprises out of your finances by seeing exactly how much you have.
3. It’s a Safe Place – The expression ‘safer than a bank’ is meant to mean the ultimate in security, as banks are pretty much the safest places to put your valuables – that’s their job! Having your money at home or in your wallet opens you to the risk of theft by others or impulse spending. The bank can’t prevent you from making foolish purchases but it can keep your money safe so you have the option to!
4. Option for New Sources of Cash – Many people who travel these days do so for long periods of time and need to be open to making money as they travel. This is hard to do if you don’t have a bank account to transfer that money into (and keep it safe!) and it allows generous friends or relatives to transfer money to you if you need a little extra help.
5. Future Travel! – It’s a bit silly to start thinking about future trips before you even go on the one right ahead of you, but saving money in an account will let you know how much you have to work with for when you get back from your trip, or if you decide to extend your existing one. More options are open to you if you have a large sum to work with, so consider watching your money grow in the bank so you can travel to your heart’s content.