7 ways to save for your next holiday

Saving up for a well deserved holiday can take time. Read our list of the seven small changes you can make to your everyday spending to get away sooner.

You’ve been dreaming of a holiday - a trip to Paris, a week at the beach, or maybe a weekend in the mountains - but how are you going to make your dream holiday a reality?

The good news is, by changing a few small things in your everyday life, you’ll be amazed at how much you could save.

After you’ve paid for food, electricity, the car, house, school and day care, there’s often not much left in the budget. But if you really want that next holiday, there’s no reason why you can’t save for it.

Here are seven small changes you can make to help you save for your next holiday.

1. Drinks

One less soft drink, takeaway coffee or glass of wine each day could save you around $5 a day. That might not sound like much but it adds up to a whopping $1825 in a year. If you want to save even more, you can stop buying drinks altogether but that might be getting a bit drastic!

2. Takeaway

We all love takeaway on those nights you get home late or just don’t have the energy to cook. However, this is money you could be spending on a dinner in Bali, Rome or Uluru. Instead of buying takeaway, next time you’re cooking, try doubling the recipe and freeze portions for those nights you don’t want to cook. 

3. Eating out

The social side of eating at a restaurant plus the bonus of not having to cook and clean up is so tempting, but at what cost? We’re sure you don’t want to become a hermit in order to save, so why not get together with a group of friends and take it in turns hosting dinner. It can be as simple or as complicated as you like and just as fun.

4. Lunch

While we are on the subject of food, you’ve probably heard it a thousand times, but taking your lunch to work every day could save you around $50 a week. Try this as an alternative. Each night make extra dinner and place it in a container to take to work. You won’t have to think about making lunch in the morning, meaning you are less likely to have to buy lunch.

5. Movies

Most of us love watching a good movie but instead of heading out to the cinema, why not have a movie night at home and save yourself a bundle. The bonus is you can wear your pyjamas. If you really have to go to the movies to see the biggest film ever, save by taking along your own food.

6. Pocket money

Get the kids to put their pocket money in a savings account so they have spending money when you go on holidays. We make our boys do this and it works really well because it limits them buying toys they don’t need during the year, and when they go on holidays they can make their own decisions about what they want to buy. It’s also a great way for them to remember their travels by.

7. Tuckshop

School tuckshop can be a real saviour in the fight against the monotony of making school lunches. It is however much more expensive than bringing lunch from home. As a working mother, I’m never going to ban tuckshop in our house because some days it makes all the difference (to me)! However, reducing the amount of school tuckshop your kids have each term can make a difference to your holiday savings.

How much could you save in one year?


One adult

Two adults

Family of four

 (2 adults,2 children)

One less drink ($5pp a day)




One less takeaway meal ($15pp a week)




One less restaurant meal ($30pp a month)




Take your lunch to work ($50pp a week for 48 weeks)




One less cinema ticket, medium popcorn and medium drink ($35pp a month)




One less day of tuckshop($25 for two children a fortnight)




Total savings in one year





These figures are estimates only to give you an idea of what you could save. You can work out your potential savings by taking a look at how much you spend on each of the above. 

Tips to make it happen

Our best advice is to start small and build up. You want this to be sustainable until you reach your goal, so don’t change everything in one day.

It’s also essential to know what you’re aiming for so you can keep motivated. Find a photo of where you want to go on holidays and stick it somewhere prominent to serve as a constant reminder.

Now what are you going to do with all this money you save? Keep it separate from your day-to-day money so you’re less likely to spend it before it’s time to book your holiday. 

Nicci O’Mara is a writer, blogger and mother of boys who loves nothing better than heading off on an adventure. Her new blog, Travels with Boys aims to inspire families to travel more and make it easier for them to get out of the house and explore their town, region, country and the world. Nicci spends the rest of her time picking up dirty clothes, banishing balls from the house, cooking, and wondering why on earth boys are always wrestling and always loud! Follow her blog at Travels with Boys or connect on Facebook and Instagram.

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