Whether you’re hitting the local pool or traveling the world on vacation, summer is all about relaxation.
But trips aren’t cheap. About one-third of Americans don’t plan on taking a summer vacation this year, according to our recent spending survey. Among those who are traveling (67%), many expect to foot a pretty hefty bill.
Here’s how Americans are planning to spend money this summer.
Nearly half of the summer vacationers are spending at least $1,000. Roughly 47% of vacationers planned to spend $1,000 or more on their trips, with 20% expecting to spend $2,500 or more.
More than half of the vacationers are spending more than last year. Fifty-five percent of those going on a trip expected to increase their spending this year from 2017.
Three in 4 people are putting expenses on a credit card. Of those taking a trip, 75% planned on using credit cards to pay for their vacation. And 59% of them don’t plan on paying off their credit cards right away.
Spending on kids is minimal. When it comes to activities such as day camp or child care for children on summer vacation, 54% of vacationers with kids are planning on spending less than $1,000. Twenty-seven percent aren’t expecting to spend anything on these activities.
People love their summer vacations
Americans are living the “treat yo self” mantra in 2018: As many as 47% of vacationers in our survey plan to spend $1,000 or more this year.
That’s higher than the estimated winter holiday spending last year. In 2017, Americans expected to spend about $965 on the holidays, including on gifts, food, and decorations, according to the National Retail Federation.
Less than one-third (31%) are planning to spend the same on summer vacation as last year, while 14% are expecting to spend less than what they did in 2017.
Credit cards take a front seat
When financing a vacation, credit cards are exceptionally convenient for trips. This could explain why 24% of vacationers plan to put at least $1,000 of spending on credit cards.
While some of the best credit cards can offer some great rewards, many shoppers are paying a lot more than what they charged on their vacation. Three in 4 vacationers are putting their trips on credit cards, and three-fifths of them don’t plan to pay them off until at least a month.
Carrying a credit card balance means you might end up paying extra in interest every month.
To avoid paying interest, try to pay off your credit cards in full every month. If your balance number seems a bit too high, check your vacation budget before making arrangements to see if it’s affordable.
Many parents won’t spend much on kids’ summer activities
Summers can be detrimental for parents who don’t have any sort of child care help. More than one-third (36%) of respondents said they have kids who are on summer vacation this year.
Twenty-seven percent of parents who have children on summer break aren’t planning to spend anything on activities such as day camp or child care, while 25% note they’ll spend less than $100 this summer.
But 19% of parents with kids on break are spending $1,000 or more on their children this summer. This is more than parents were spending in 2014. Four years ago, parents expected to pay $958 on average on summer activities for kids, according to an American Express survey.
Keeping up appearances
Aside from travel and vacations, Americans are doling out a bit of cash even as they stay close to home.
Social activities are proving costly, as 28% of respondents plan to spend $500 or more on weddings, barbecues, and other parties this summer. Ten percent are expecting to spend at least $1,000.
But budgets have proven to keep people frugal: 53% of respondents noted they’ve considered skipping social events this summer to save money. But that means 47% don’t plan to cut back on parties this summer to save money.
Additionally, 51% of respondents thought about having a staycation this summer to save money.
The change of seasons shouldn’t dictate your spending
While summer is a great time for traveling and having a good time, you should still try to stick to your budget. Only 60% of those who said they were taking a trip admitted to having a vacation budget, while 40% don’t have one at all.
Here are some ways to keep a handle on your summer spending:
Make a budget (and stick to it). Don’t be part of the (very large) 40% of vacationers that don’t have a summer spending budget. Regardless of whether you plan on taking a vacation, the time for rest and relaxation might nudge you into spending more than you can afford.
Don’t forget about your current bills. Try to keep up with regular payments on your credit cards. It’s best if you pay them in full. At the very least, make minimum payments.
Keep social activities low. Since more than a quarter of respondents admit to spending more than $500 on things such as weddings and parties, try to limit your appearances. Keep them limited so you don’t go overboard with spending.
The more you can plan your spending based on your earnings, the easier it will be to spend responsibly. With a little strategy, you can avoid going into — or staying in — debt.
Interested in a personal loan?Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
|Lender||APR Range||Loan Amount|
|1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.
3 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.
4 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
5 Important Disclosures for LendingPoint.
6 Important Disclosures for LendingClub.
All loans made by WebBank, Member FDIC. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, and credit usage & history. The APR ranges from 6.16% to 35.89%. For example, you could receive a loan of $6,000 with an interest rate of 7.99% and a 5.00% origination fee of $300 for an APR of 11.51%. In this example, you will receive $5,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $187.99. The total amount repayable will be $6,767.64. Your APR will be determined based on your credit at time of application. The origination fee ranges from 1% to 6% and the average origination fee is 5.49% as of Q1 2017. There is no down payment and there is never a prepayment penalty. Closing of your loan is contingent upon your agreement of all the required agreements and disclosures on the www.lendingclub.com website. All loans via LendingClub have a minimum repayment term of 36 months or longer.
7 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
8 Important Disclosures for Avant.
* The actual rate and loan amount that a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and other factors. Funds are generally deposited via ACH for delivery next business day if approved by 4:30pm CT Monday-Friday. Avant branded credit products are issued by WebBank, member FDIC.
** Example: A $5,700 loan with an administration fee of 4.75% and an amount financed of $5,429.25, repayable in 36 monthly installments, would have an APR of 29.95% and monthly payments of $230.33
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.
Upgrade Bank Disclosures
** Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.
|7.73% – 29.99%||$1,000 - $50,000||Visit Upstart|
|6.26% – 14.87%1||$5,000 - $100,000||Visit SoFi|
|6.99% – 35.97%*||$1,000 - $50,000||Visit Upgrade|
|5.99% – 24.99%2||$5,000 - $35,000||Visit Payoff|
|4.99% – 29.99%3||$10,000 - $35,000||Visit FreedomPlus|
|5.99% – 18.99%4||$5,000 - $50,000||Visit Citizens|
|15.49% – 34.49%5||$2,000 - $25,000||Visit LendingPoint|
|6.16% – 35.89%6||$1,000 - $40,000||Visit LendingClub|
|6.99% – 18.24%7||$5,000 - $75,000||Visit Earnest|
|9.95% – 35.99%8||$2,000 - $35,000||Visit Avant|