Author Topic: Spendy-pants vacation  (Read 10604 times)

catccc

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Spendy-pants vacation
« on: January 15, 2015, 10:03:57 AM »
So I just booked a weeklong trip for my family to the beautiful beaches of Turks & Caicos.  In the high season.

We are usually very frugal, and we save around 50% of my salary.  But I feel shamefully anti-mustachian for booking this trip.  At least I moved the dates a bit so we are flying midweek, which brought the cost down a bit.  We don't usually vacation like this.  The last two years were camping and cabins in a national park a few hours away.

I am proud that I don't have things like housekeepers and the latest gadgets, but I'm kind of embarrassed about this one.  I'm sure we'll have a great time and after the trip I'll declare that it was worth it.  But the initial guilt is kind of surprising me.  Just had to admit it to someone.  (someplace?)


Khaetra

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2015, 10:15:27 AM »
I spend more than I care to admit on vacations but I would rather travel than have the latest-greatest thing.

partgypsy

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2015, 10:34:38 AM »
I know how you feel. My parents in laws have subsidized 3 really nice vacations for our family, so there is that guilt as well. But I have to admit all the trips were really nice. My own family said one of the nicest Xmas gift I gave them was the photobook I made this year which included photos from that trip. They enjoyed vicariously participating in the trip and also having pictures of me looking relaxed and rested.

The biggest downside, is that you want to go on more trips like this!

I'm a red panda

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2015, 10:37:22 AM »
For me, one of the best reasons to save isn't to retire early- it is to be able to better afford vacations.

Enjoy it.

RoseRelish

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2015, 11:30:25 AM »
Have fun. Don't fret over infrequent vacations when you can afford it.

golden1

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2015, 12:02:13 PM »
We do stay-cations and camping most of the time but splurge on one spendy pants vacation every 3-4 years.  I really, really enjoy them so it doesn't bother me.  I am looking to splurge on my latest spendy pants vacation soon for my 20th anniversary!  Have a great time!

MgoSam

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2015, 01:21:59 PM »
It's your money, I hope you enjoy and treat yourself. We only live once, and I'm sure that you have worked hard enough to enjoy yourself.

catccc

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2015, 01:33:52 PM »
Excellent replies!  I'm surprised at the support, but I suppose you can get away with certain things when you are debt free and maxing out retirement accounts and stashing away some on top of that.  Reminds me of that meme someone posted with a lady crying, captioned with "I have so much money... I have to use taxable accounts!"

This will be our 2nd time to Providenciales.  I remember just 6 months after our first trip, telling my husband we should go again.  Before our youngest turned 2 to save on the flights.  And he said, "yeah, but we'd save a lot more if we skipped it altogether.  let's aim for 2-3 years from now."

Fast forward to now, when a few years had passed; I really didn't want to part with the $ for the vacation.  We researched some alternatives, but given that my husband and I are prone to "savers remorse," sometimes we just have to bite the bullet.

I'm very much looking forward to it!  Hopefully I will have "forgotten" about the cash outlay when it rolls around in a few months so I can enjoy without guilt!

Capsu78

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2015, 10:12:07 AM »
No matter what phase I life I have "financially" passed through, I have never regretted a dollar I spent on travel. 

CheapskateWife

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2015, 10:16:16 AM »
We have our own spendy pants vacation coming up, and I look at it as my reward for getting debt free this year and maxing out all our other "responsible" saving endeavors.  For a week, we get to live like royalty and reconnect as a couple away from the kids.  Heaven!

MakingSenseofCents

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2015, 01:47:18 PM »
Enjoy it! Don't feel embarrassed.

southern granny

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2015, 01:50:36 PM »
I have never regretted the money spent on travel or vacations - weekend or week long.

Khaetra

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2015, 02:16:38 PM »
I have never regretted the money spent on travel or vacations - weekend or week long.

I agree 100%.  I would rather spend money on experiences than things and it was a big reason I retired early.  Go enjoy yourself :).

capital

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2015, 07:22:34 PM »
Would you work a week longer (or whatever) before retiring to take this vacation? For my vacations, the answer is always yes— the goal isn't to save all the pleasure in life for an early retirement that may not come! And I'd probably prefer to work a couple days a week for some of the year in order to afford travel, anway.

HappyMargo

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2015, 07:51:18 AM »
I have never regretted the money spent on travel or vacations - weekend or week long.

My only travel regrets involve Las Vegas.  Grrr.  Never again.
Although I did hit a straight flush once, took every penny of that huge win home & paid off Nursing School entirely! 
(The dealers could not believe I didn't go directly to Casear's Forum & buy up some hugely over-priced branded purses/shoes/watches/whatever.) 

That win was awesome, but DH knows Vegas would be a waste on me now. No more gambling. Ever.  (Face punch myself!!)

Zikoris

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2015, 07:16:42 PM »
Out of 8 big trips I've done, the only one I'm kind of on the fence about is a cruise I did once, because I wasn't crazy about the whole cruise experience and got quite sick - but the ports were INCREDIBLE, and we got a chance to see a lot of smaller places in the Caribbean that we probably wouldn't go to otherwise (Cayman Islands, etc). I don't think I'd ever regret a non-cruise trip to the Caribbean though - it's absolutely gorgeous.

ambimammular

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2015, 07:22:05 PM »
We've been doing the flight mile/credit card churning to get companion passes, but now that a splurgy family vacation is a possibility I feel hesitant. It seems wrong to eat out multiple times in a week or spend hundreds on hotel rooms when the mortgage isn't paid off yet. 

I keep thinking the Bahamas sound nice, but shouldn't we just go visit my parents (in North Dakota), sleep in the spare room, and cook dinner in their kitchen.

Husband is less convinced.

southern granny

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2015, 08:53:06 PM »
Out of 8 big trips I've done, the only one I'm kind of on the fence about is a cruise I did once, because I wasn't crazy about the whole cruise experience and got quite sick - but the ports were INCREDIBLE, and we got a chance to see a lot of smaller places in the Caribbean that we probably wouldn't go to otherwise (Cayman Islands, etc). I don't think I'd ever regret a non-cruise trip to the Caribbean though - it's absolutely gorgeous.
We had similar feelings about our only cruise.  We enjoyed it and had a good time, but decided we didn't like the cruise experience.  I didn't get sick, but only because I was wearing the patch and also took dramamine on two days.  The ports were gorgeous.  The food was good.  We just didn't like the days at sea and there were too many children on board.  If we ever take another cruise it will be when schools are in session.  I know a lot of kids now are home schooled, but hopefully it will be less children.  A relative was on a cruise land excursion when a bandit jumped out from the bushes and tried to cut the strap of her friend's purse, but slashed her arm.  I don't know if I would feel safe anymore. 

SunshineAZ

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2015, 08:33:05 AM »
We take a 2 week spendypants diving vacation to Roatan Honduras every year with several fellow diver couples we know.  Wouldn't miss it for the world.  Of course, SCUBA divers NEED at least a yearly fix.  :) I know I saw at least a few other divers here, so they will understand. 

Zikoris

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2015, 08:47:20 AM »
Out of 8 big trips I've done, the only one I'm kind of on the fence about is a cruise I did once, because I wasn't crazy about the whole cruise experience and got quite sick - but the ports were INCREDIBLE, and we got a chance to see a lot of smaller places in the Caribbean that we probably wouldn't go to otherwise (Cayman Islands, etc). I don't think I'd ever regret a non-cruise trip to the Caribbean though - it's absolutely gorgeous.
We had similar feelings about our only cruise.  We enjoyed it and had a good time, but decided we didn't like the cruise experience.  I didn't get sick, but only because I was wearing the patch and also took dramamine on two days.  The ports were gorgeous.  The food was good.  We just didn't like the days at sea and there were too many children on board.  If we ever take another cruise it will be when schools are in session.  I know a lot of kids now are home schooled, but hopefully it will be less children.  A relative was on a cruise land excursion when a bandit jumped out from the bushes and tried to cut the strap of her friend's purse, but slashed her arm.  I don't know if I would feel safe anymore.

Yeah, we also didn't like the days at sea, and felt like two of them on a one week cruise was excessive. Also we didn't like the food, very few of the staff spoke enough English to communicate, and it felt really crowded. Fortunately, we were able to avoid most kids over 5 by going in early December before school was out.

gimp

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2015, 02:12:02 PM »
On all the vacations I've taken - and I generously count the travels from one side of the country to the other, going from school to work and back - it's always been about the journey more than the destination; or, like the last ones, the destinations (a slew of national parks etc) were part of the journey. The result, as far as money is concerned, is that I can go far, do a lot, and do it fantastically cheap - roughly speaking, it just costs 10-15 cents in gas (okay, maybe 20-25 in canada) per mile, unspecified maintenance issues, and a small amount of overhead for food.

But now that I can afford it, I would love to take the kind of vacation where you minimize travel time and try to spend time in an actual destination. Still looking to make it inexpensive, but not going as far as being cheap.

Maybe next winter I'll fly to Hawaii or something. Rent a car, and if I'm by myself, sleep in it by the best places to get sunrises and sunsets.

Experiences don't get a pass as far as spending goes - but when you have no debt, lots of savings and continue saving, well... whatever makes you happy doesn't really get a lot of judgment, fiscally. You're set, you know what you're doing, you know the costs.

Putting that shit on a credit card when you're already in debt is another story entirely.

Cassie

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2015, 04:55:01 PM »
I never regret any of the $ we spend on vacations.  YOu remember the experiences forever.  About every 3 years we go to Europe for 2 weeks. WE usually take a vacation in the states that involves driving on the off years. I went on a Royal Caribbean cruise & it was awesome.  The food was fantastic, service great, plenty to do on the ship & the ports were wonderful.

catccc

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2015, 10:21:49 AM »
Would you work a week longer (or whatever) before retiring to take this vacation? For my vacations, the answer is always yes— the goal isn't to save all the pleasure in life for an early retirement that may not come! And I'd probably prefer to work a couple days a week for some of the year in order to afford travel, anway.

DH, a SAHD, works part time at a coffee shop.  The cost of this vacation is just under what he earned all year.  I asked him if he would trade a year of his work for this vacation.  He said no way!

But I earn more working full time.  It would be about 3.5 weeks of work for me to take this vacation, and it is a bit on the high side, but if someone told me if I did this job for 3.5 weeks and then I could spend a week in Turks and Caicos, I'd totally say yes.

Since some time has passed since the purchase, I'm starting to feel less guilty and more excited about the trip.

But now that I can afford it, I would love to take the kind of vacation where you minimize travel time and try to spend time in an actual destination. Still looking to make it inexpensive, but not going as far as being cheap.

Maybe next winter I'll fly to Hawaii or something. Rent a car, and if I'm by myself, sleep in it by the best places to get sunrises and sunsets.

Highly recommend longer vacations, even if there is more travel within them!  Before getting married, we did a month long backpacking trip in Europe, it was amazing.  For our honeymoon, we spent 5 weeks in Hawaii.  Hostels, camping, and in HI, lots of outdoor activities made both of these vacations really affordable.  Heck, I was still in college and DH was only making $18K a year (as a zookeeper) when we did the Europe trip. 

happyfeet

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2015, 02:31:32 PM »
Travel is our highest line item in our budget.  About 20% of what we spend.  Enjoy every moment. No face punches here.

Kris

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2015, 04:57:17 PM »
Travel is one of the only spendy-pants things I don't feel bad about (and to be clear, I would never ever ever put a trip on a credit card I wasn't going to pay off in full at the end of the month).  We take a warm weather vacation every January and another trip somewhere cool in the summer.  My parents were very frugal but saved up all their money for the "someday" when they could retire and travel... And then died before they could take advantage of their retirement.  I do not want to put off traveling, and as awful as it is that they are gone, I am thankful for the lesson.

Albert

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #25 on: January 25, 2015, 08:40:43 AM »
I've traveled extensively since getting my first permanent job six years ago. Not counting visiting parents (2 h flight away), business travel or weekend getaways I've been on 12 trips during that time. Some have been a bit more fantastic than others, but I don't regret any of them. Most have been nearby in Europe, but my third long range trip (Vietnam) is now in the planning stages. :)

Just to state the obvious there is no direct relationship between enjoyment of a trip and cost/distance.

DecD

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #26 on: January 25, 2015, 08:48:47 AM »
We went to South Africa last May.

DH had his share 100% paid for through work (totally boondoggle for him!) but we paid all of my share.  Even only paying 50%, it was an expensive trip.  But- very memorable.  I'm glad we went- we won't go every year though!

Enjoy your trip.  Don't spoil it by worrying about the money already spent- that would waste said money!  Embrace it!  Have an amazing time.

Cassie

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #27 on: January 25, 2015, 01:59:08 PM »
Kris-life can be short. I also know a few close people that this happened too.  We love to travel & also are doing so while we can. You just never know.

Fishingmn

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2015, 06:41:14 AM »
There's a thread on the general forum about "how mustachian are you". This isn't a contest. Everyone has to choose their own path that meets the needs and goals for your family & lifestyle. Think I answered "1" to that poll.

Travel is the biggest budget item for us. Last year we spent $5k on a cruise and $8k on a 12 day trip to France/Spain. I don't regret those choices in the least. We will retire by 54 (1-2 yrs) instead of 40 like many seem to be aiming for here but that's what works for us.

russianswinga

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2015, 04:05:43 PM »
Enjoy Turks and Caicos! Here is my wife and I in Grand Turk on a cruise that we got on a fire sale last september: $350 per person for a balcony room for 7 days. That's less than $50 per person per day including meals. For a balcony.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10205571032739250&type=1&l=7794ebf736


JoJoP

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #30 on: January 26, 2015, 04:52:46 PM »
No matter what phase I life I have "financially" passed through, I have never regretted a dollar I spent on travel.

I completely agree!  I am frugal in many ways, but I surely enjoy my time exploring new places/new cultures.  The whole idea of "retirement," especially "early retirement"  is really more like "how to have free time and money at the same time, so you can do the things you value and enjoy".

 I've gone a bit overboard on the miles and points collecting, so my trips "cost" about 5 cents on the dollar or less, sometimes much less.  I'm good with that!  Hope you all who love to travel are clued in to the miles and points world for nearly free travel mostly via credit card sign ups.  If you are good with your finances, this a great side perk.  I've paid 0 interest on credit cards and been to 15 countries in 2 years... Italy later this week. 

AllieVaulter

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #31 on: January 28, 2015, 12:14:57 AM »
We're taking a big vacation this year too!  My husband is finally finishing up his PhD, so we're leaving the country for a couple weeks.  It's expensive, but it's also a worthwhile experience.  This will only be the third time my husband's been out of the US.  I feel like people should travel a bit, just to see how things work in other places.  One of the reasons I love the idea of MMM is that if we get our daily life expenses low enough, it's totally within reach to spend a few thousand on travel every couple years and still retire early!  It's the best of everything!

milesdividendmd

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Re: Spendy-pants vacation
« Reply #32 on: January 28, 2015, 02:12:46 AM »
If it gives you more happiness than the amount of money invested in FI and compounded then it is a good purchase.

If your vacation fails this litmus test, then why not invest a little time in learning how to travel hack?

From my perspective the only thing better than travel is free travel.