Should you take a vacation while in debt?

Taking a break from your regular routine can be essential to maintaining both your mental and physical health. In fact, that's one reason why most employers offer a certain number of vacation days to their employees each year.

But when you are trying to get out of debt, you may think the last thing you need to do is spend more money to take a vacation. You may ask yourself if you even "deserve" to take a vacation while in debt.

Should you use your vacation days from work to travel and get away from real life for a while? Should you just save the money and put it toward debt instead?

Overall, I think paying off debt takes grit and sacrifice, which is why on the surface, I'd say you shouldn't spend the money to take a vacation while in debt. BUT, you have to live a little along the way to avoid debt burnout, which could cause a much bigger setback.

My advice is to to find a balance between taking no vacation and taking an expensive vacation. There are ways you can keep the costs down so you don't end up with more debt from your getaway.

1. Lodging

Of course, the more people you take on your vacation, the higher the cost of lodging will be. However, if you don't have kids yet or they are a little older, maybe you could go camping. Or, to keep prices in check, search the internet for ways to find cheaper lodging through TripAdvisor or Airbnb. You can also rent out your own home through some of the home swap sites to help earn a little money while you're traveling.

2. Food

Grab that ice chest you have been storing in the garage, dust it off, and wash out the inside. If you are taking a road trip, you can plan ahead and pack the food items you need to take with you. Use the cooler for the few items you need to keep cold and keep another container in the car for the other items not requiring refrigeration. When you start to run low on essentials, such as bread or cheese for sandwiches, make a quick stop at a local grocery store to pick up more. Even if you splurge on things like pre-cut fruit at the store, it will be a lot cheaper and healthier than fast food.

3. Transportation

Thankfully, current gas prices aren't what they were a few years ago. Taking a road trip in your car is usually cheaper than flying, and much more desirable than taking a bus. Of course, depending on where you live, there are also trains to consider as a transportation choice to your destination. Any of these options can be economical if you take the time to shop ahead and know where you are heading.

4. Activities

Look for free or low cost activities for your vacation, such as going to a lake or beach. In addition, consider museums, hiking, or just walking around on your own taking in all of the sites. A vacation can be a fun adventure without having to spend a fortune for guided tours or other expensive activities.

5. Pay in Cash

Save cash in a sinking fund to pay for your vacation. This way you won't rack up a single cent in debt for your getaway. Of course, that doesn't make your vacation free, but it can make it do-able.

6. Take a Shorter Trip

Sometimes your schedule, or budget, will not allow you to take a week off and head somewhere exotic. However, that shouldn't mean you have to give up taking a break altogether. Simply make it a short one for only a weekend or a couple of days during the week. You can still have some fun without breaking the bank.

Taking a break now and then from your regular routine is not only good for you, but it can be a priority for good health. Whether or not you should take a vacation while in debt is ultimately up to you.

Are you planning to take a vacation before your debt is paid off? How will you keep it cheap?

The post Should You Take a Vacation While in Debt? appeared first on Money Peach.

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Turks & Caicos, Caribbean

There is no better way to get away from the cold winter months than with a trip to the beach! Snorkel in Grand Turk and then grab lunch by the water for a quick taste of summer. 

Aspen, Colorado

If you can't get enough of the snow and winter sports, then Aspen is the place for you! Grab your skis, head over for a day on Buttermilk Mountain, then back to the resort for a warm pick-me-up.

Manhattan, New York

Really get into the holiday spirit this year by taking a trip to New York to see all of the decorations. But the only way you'll be able to see everything in one trip is from above -- take a helicopter ride above the buzz and really take in the city.

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

Beat the crowds (and the summer heat) by visiting this National Park in the off-season. Hike the quiet trails during the day and head back to the El Tovar Hotel for unparalleled views and accommodations.

Tulum, Mexico

Go on an adventure and catch a glimpse of the ancient world in Tulum this winter! See the Mayan ruins with a day trip to Chichen Itza or swim in the Grand Cenote for an unforgettable trip.

Washington, D.C.

Check out our nation's capital this holiday season, and see the monuments all lit up by taking a moonlight trolley tour around the city. Don't forget to stop by the National Christmas tree and the museums!

Vancouver, Canada

No matter the season, there is never a shortage of things to do in Vancouver. Take a walk through the beautiful Stanley Park, visit the Museum of Anthropology or visit the shops at Granville Island.

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