Summer, sun, vacation for many of us are coming soon. Here are some practical tips for avoiding annoying money-wasters at the best time of the year.
Above 30 degrees, the sun is shining, holidays booked and after a few adventures in traffic jams or at the airport (I think flying through Amsterdam is still not a good idea 😉) you are finally there. Everything is ready for relaxation, rest and fun.
I don’t know about you, but the last week before Christmas is always very stressful for me until all family members finally arrive with their suitcases packed. Maybe because neither my husband nor I are good planners and despite our good intentions, we always end up on the way to the last minute, which leads to a lot of forgotten things (honey, I thought you packed your toothbrushes – no).
Somehow this seems to affect our boys as well. Last time the nice lady and I got stuck at the security check for 45 minutes until school scissors were finally found in the suitcase. And disappeared, never seen again, deep in the Zurich airport (I’d really like to know where it all ends, I’m sure you could build the whole foundation out of it).
Feet in the sand and dangle in the hammock must be earned. Fun brakes like finances are less desirable.
Here are some vacation facts and tips for avoiding annoying money-wasters and taking a break not only for yourself but for your budget.
This is how Switzerland travels
According to a Generali study 7 out of 10 respondents plan to travel in the summer. The main reasons are rest, relaxation and a change of scenery, preferably in Italy, followed by France and Spain. The most popular means of transport: the car.
Overall, the population of Switzerland in 10.7 billion francs for trips abroad in 2021.by 13.4% more than a year earlier, but by 43 percent. less than in 2019 before the pandemic (Hotelrevue, June 2022).
The Allianz Partners Travel Confidence Study surveyed 9,107 respondents in 9 countries to see how the economic situation affects our travel behavior. According to the data, the biggest challenge for travelers is money for the Swiss state spend around 2,100 francs on a summer vacation and are therefore in third place after the USA (3,061 francs) and Austria (2,300 francs). However, a total of 50% of respondents across all countries also said that: that they will have to reconsider their travel plans due to rising costs and economic uncertainty. According to abouttravel.ch, in Switzerland it is about a fifth of respondents (23%) who cannot afford a vacation.
6 pesky Christmas money hogs
- Cheap ticket, expensive luggage: The airline ticket seems cheap, but you are exposed to lots of extra options when you buy such as flex options, insurance, and suitcases. Check-in costs different amounts at different airlines. In addition, the specifications for the allowed dimensions and weights are different. Quickly checking in advance that a wheelchair fits in the cabin can often help avoid costly surprises at the airport. Having to check suitcases at the “emergency check-in” desk is often much more expensive.
- Mobile phone costs: Maybe you already have a package with which you can call and surf the Internet with confidence, at least in Europe. If not, check the tariffs, possibly subscribe to data transmission or disable roaming. For everyone with children: It is worth checking for all family members and setting up children’s phones accordingly.
- ATM fees: Depending on the bank and card, cash withdrawals now cost something even in Switzerland, and abroad are often even more expensive. The most expensive thing is to withdraw money from an ATM with a credit card. According to moneyland.ch, the minimum fee is around CHF 10 for a withdrawal, with larger amounts typically costing around four percent. Alternative: The debit card is a bit cheaper and is around 5 francs for the withdrawal. Additionally, ATMs abroad may charge an extra fee: you will drop € 100, you will be charged 103 – you like to avoid Travelex and Euronet machines, these often have high fees. It is best to check in advance what fees your provider is paying. Overview of providers and fees here.
- Credit cards and exchange rates: Like fees, exchange rates are also important. The worse the exchange rate your bank or card charges, the more expensive it becomes. The ATM or shop often asks if you prefer to pay in Swiss francs or in the local currency. Always choose your local currency as the rate applied locally is often very low. The best solution is to get a card from a provider that offers friendlier rates, or even interbank rates. This is the case with many neobanks such as Revolut, Yuh, Kaspar etc.
- Local transport and car rental: Booked a quiet hotel but completely in the middle of nowhere? In summer, car rentals and taxis are especially popular. Explain your transportation options in advance and take a look at your rental car to see what additional charges may apply. For some, insurance and even passengers cost extra.
- Packages with extras: Read the fine print on the packages, there are often additional charges for sunbeds, drinks, internet or other services.
Other annoying costs are food on planes, minibars in hotels, and maybe spontaneous shopping for things you don’t need at home anymore (we also have some nice souvenirs 😉). In addition to annoying money eaters, there can be quarrels over money while on vacation. You have more time for yourself and with your partner, maybe you will discover new habits or think about life and the future. This is where composure and a few basic rules about money help.
Where are you vacationing this summer? In Switzerland or abroad? Have you ever tricked into an annoying hog of costs? What tips do you have?
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