Spent more than necessary on your last holiday? Start planning now and save

Published: Tuesday, February 16, 2021

TourismBanking Economy

Planning in advance for your finances can set you on a course for a financially rewarding year, and holiday expenses are no exception for those eager for some scenic relief after being cooped up due to lockdown.

Press Release Feature Image

The extended lockdown presents unfavourable economic realities which will make 2021 another difficult year for many South Africans. Planning in advance for your finances can set you on a course for a financially rewarding year, and holiday expenses are no exception for those eager for some scenic relief after being cooped up due to lockdown. 

2020 was an extremely challenging year, and many of us were looking forward to December as an opportunity to travel, relax, or catch up with our loved ones. However, as a result of the reinstatement of lockdown level 3 restrictions, many of us were never able to enjoy a holiday, or found our plans cut short. 

With a light at the end of the tunnel starting to emerge in the form of planned vaccine rollouts, many South Africans are searching for travel destinations to celebrate a return to some degree of normalcy. Fundiswa Mbuqe, Public Relations Manager at Momentum Multiply, advises that planning at least six months ahead may be the best course of action for our personal finances. 
“When it comes to our holidays, we might be tempted to pull a spur-of-the-moment trip, which often results in expensive hotel rooms and high-cost flights, says Mbuqe. “Planning your holiday can provide a host of positive benefits, including improved mental wellness, happiness, and something to look forward to.”

According to data collected by Momentum Multiply through its travel partners, the reality is that most people, even before Covid-19, tended to book their holidays closer to the time. “While a spontaneous trip might seem exciting, you can save money and have a far better experience if you take a bit of time to plan ahead.” 

Mbuqe says flights are a perfect example of this. Momentum Multiply data indicated that 60% of travellers tend to book flights closer to the time – that being less than a month from their intended trip. This flies in the face of good financial reason, as 2017 data from flight booking platform Cheapflights suggests that travellers can enjoy significant savings (up to 14% by their calculations), when booking three to six months in advance – which they revealed only 23% of travellers were shown to do.

Mbuqe provides some useful tips to help you avoid unnecessary expenses when planning your next holiday. 

Destination matters when it comes to money – local is lekker
If you are looking to jet set your way across the globe, it pays to choose a destination where your local currency is worth more. The first world may seem enticing, but destinations that trade in Pounds, Euros, and Dollars are far pricier. 

Mbuqe says that considering the fragile state of the economy and our nation’s tourism sector, domestic travel is the way to go. “Local travel has been reported as a huge trend for the year ahead. You can also bet that the local tourism industry is going to do its utmost to entice you and your family with some huge savings – and now more than ever our sense of patriotism is needed to support our economy. So start with local and enjoy the savings.” 

Deal hunt
With the economy and our financial situations being what they are, it is prudent to start planning your 2021 festive season getaway now. 

If you do that, you will have various accommodation options. Not only that, but bookings made in advance offer great savings to consumers. 

Have a savings plan 
“Once you know where you want to go and who’s going with you, draw up a holiday budget, which all starts with a savings plan,” says Mbuqe. 

Get yourself a notebook or use the apps available, and get organised, she suggests. Estimate what you can reasonably afford on accommodation, food and transport. Then move on to what you predict you’ll spend on activities and luxuries. Once you have that amount, add an extra 10% on top just in case. This will give you a decent savings target. 

The next step is to figure out how many months you have until your holiday, and that will give you a view of how much you need to put away each month to meet that target.

Cash in on your rewards programme 
In these frugal times, it is important for all savvy would-be travellers to tap into every financial avenue and then squeeze that sponge for all it’s worth. If you are part of a rewards programme and you have tons of points to spare, your upcoming holiday provides an ideal opportunity to cash in. 

“Take Momentum Multiply for example. If you’re a Multiply Premier member, you can get up to 40% off your SAA, FlySafair and Mango flights. If that costs R10 000, then by simply tapping into your rewards programme, you could have already saved R4 000,” says Mbuqe.

Travel insurance should be a non-negotiable 
As much as we do not want to think of bad things while on our holiday, it is important to consider taking out travel insurance when we travel. “By taking out travel insurance you are essentially covering yourself against travel risks such as lost or stolen luggage, cancellation cover should you not be able to travel due to Covid-19 restrictions and most importantly, unexpected medical costs abroad,” says Mbuqe.

Go forth and start planning
“Remember that travel planning is essential. Planning saves you time, stretches your money further, maximises your experiences, and sets the scene for a hassle-free holiday. Once all the planning is done, all you have left to do is pack your bags, get your camera, and head off for the adventure of a lifetime,” concludes Mbuqe.

If you would like to receive notifications for new press releases