So you’ve caught the travel bug.
You’ve done some travel with your family, but now as a teenager, you want to experience some of your own travel adventures.
Many teenagers experience this adventurous feeling but quickly realize that travelling isn’t cheap.
So how can a teenager save money to travel? Isn’t the answer just going to be the same as how can a teenager save money?
You might think that, but having a specific goal in mind is crucial for achieving your travel ambitions.
Okay enough talking! Let’s get into it.
Here is the 6 step process for how a teenager can save money for travel purposes.
- Determine where you want to travel, and for how long.
- Set a savings goal. How much will you need to save?
- Open a savings account and title it “Travel Fund”
- Generate some form of monthly income.
- Contribute a percentage of your monthly income to your travel fund.
- Reach your savings goals and travel the world.
The concept of saving money isn’t hard, spend less than you make and save the rest.
Easy in theory, but hard in reality. This is why steps 1 and 2 are so crucial from a motivational perspective.
Let’s dig a little deeper into each step.
1. Determine where you want to travel, and for how long.
In order to save money to travel as a teenager, you must first determine where you want to go, and how long you want to go for.
While technically you could save money first and then decide where you want to go, having a clear vision of your trip will improve your motivation to save money and increase your chances of actually going.
Some teenagers will print out an image of where they want to travel and then place the picture somewhere they will see it daily.
Another idea is to set your computer or phone background to a picture of your desired destination. Visualization can be one of the most powerful tool used to help individuals get the results they want.
You might think this is silly, but trust me it can really help you stay motivated during step 4 of the process.
What’s better? There is no work involved in this step. Do a quick google search of the place you want to travel and find a picture that excites you about this potential destination, set this picture somewhere you’ll see it often and boom, you’re done step 1.
2. Set a savings goal. How much will you need to save?
Okay, so you’ve completed step 1. Easy enough right?
Lucky for you, step 2 is a joke too. And it’s fun! If you want to save money as a teenager for travel, you need to set a budget for your trip.
How much will your flights cost, how much will food and lodging cost? What are some other expenses you need to account for?
Once you have an estimated cost for your travel, add another 20% on top of it, just to be safe.
So if you think your travel budget should be $2000 based on your calculations, I recommend adding another $400 ($2000 x 20%).
Again, this is just an example, I don’t know how long you’re going for or where you’re going, but creating a savings goal based on your estimated budget is crucial and will increase your chances of following through.
Similar to step 1, you are just setting a goal here. The famous Tony Robbins says “Goal setting is the vehicle that will drive you to your desired destination.”
Once you have your saving goals, write it down and stick to it.
There are a ton of good apps out there that can help you track your savings progress which can add to your motivation.
The main purpose of this step is to build a foundation for your travel arrangements. You now know where you are going and how much you’ll need, so now it’s time to start working towards your goal.
3. Open a savings account and name it “Travel Fund”
If you want to save money for travel as a teenager, you really need to set up a seperate savings account. You don’t have to complicate this step but I’d recommend setting up your account with your existing bank.
I wouldn’t worry or spend too much time trying to find a savings account with a high interest rate. You’re not saving money to generate returns, you’re saving money to travel.
The main thing is to make sure your money is easily accessible and liquid. If you happen to make a few dollars from interest, then great, but that’s not the goal here.
Lastly, online banking portals now allow you to name your bank accounts with an account “nickname”. Take advantage of this feature and name your account something that helps build upon your travel vision.
You don’t have to complicate this either, “Travel Fund” works perfectly. Maybe “30 day Hawaii fund” works? Again it all depends on where you’re going and what your vision is.
Just make sure the money in this account is solely used for your travel goals and nothing else.
A lot of apps today will also link to your bank account so you don’t have to manually update your savings progress, if possible try and take advantage of this as it will only fuel your motivation to save quicker and travel more.
4. Generate some form of monthly income
In order to save money to travel as a teenager, you need to generate some form of income. However, as a teenager, a full time job is likely out of the question, so you need to think a little differently.
How can you earn a regular income without working full time?
If you can travel, you can say “Hi Welcome to Mcdonalds”.
This is not to say you have to work at a fast food joint, but the bottom line is that there are part time jobs available in your area for you to earn an income.
Part time jobs offer flexible hours and standard wages for you to earn a decent monthly income.
The question really becomes how badly do you want to travel?
Sell unused household items
You’d be surprised how easy this method is. If you want to save money for travel as a teenager, this might be your best option yet.
Whether it’s Facebook marketplace, Craigslist, Kijiji, there is no shortage of online marketplaces available today for you to sell your stuff.
Have a look around your house, you’ll be surprised how much crap you have lying around.
Old golf clubs, beer coolers, computer monitors, shoes, clothes, books, you name it!
As they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
Throw some of this stuff up online for sale and watch how quickly it goes.
Not only are you making some cash here, your clearing out your house at the same time, Marie Kondo would be proud.
The key word I want to highlight here is unused. Selling your mom’s car is not a good idea. I repeat, not a good idea.
Listen, when I say side hustle, I am talking about a real side hustle, nothing fancy. You don’t need to create the next Facebook here.
A side hustle can be anything you do to earn a little extra money. For example, you could collect beer bottles, shovel snow, mow lawns, clean windows. Just to name a few!
None of these ideas require any trained skills and your customer base is anyone with a front door. If you hustle and knock on a few doors, making a few thousand dollars for your travel fund won’t take as long as you think.
If you want to start a bigger business, by all means, the purpose here is to eliminate the excuse of not being able to start a side hustle. If you can tie your shoes and chew gum, you can mow someone’s lawn.
Another great way to earn money from a side hustle is through blogging. If you are interested in learning my 3 step process to start a blog, check out my resource page here.
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5. Contribute a percentage of your monthly income to your travel fund.
Saving a percentage of your earnings is crucial if you want to travel as a teenager.
But remember, you’re not just saving this money in your normal checking account, because we know how fast that’ll be spent.
You’re putting this money into your new Travel Fund account that you set up in step 3.
The percentage of your earnings you decide to save for travel is really up to you and depends on how much money you’ll need and when you’ll need it.
As a teenager, you only have certain times of the year where you’re not in school, so not reaching your savings goal on time could mean you need to wait months or even a year to take the trip you saved up for.
With that being said, when determining how much of your earnings you should contribute to your travel fund, it is crucial you link your savings goals to a timeline. This way, you can hold yourself accountable to saving a specific amount by a certain date.
This will motivate you to work harder to avoid missing travel opportunities.
6. Reach your savings goals and travel the world.
The best part of saving for money as a teenager for travel is when you reach your savings goals and you begin booking your trip.
And that’s all there really is to step 6.
Continue on with step 5 until you reach your savings goals and then get out of here, see the world!! Not to be mistaken with sea world (The Office fans will know).
In all seriousness, step 6 is where all your hard work of earning an income while still in school pays off.
Don’t get caught up in booking fancy travel arrangements. Fly economy, fill up with regular gas, spend a night in a 2 star hotel. Who cares. You aren’t doing all this work to sit in comfy chairs and stay in boogie hotels.
Spend your hard earned money on experiencing new adventures or trying different food while ingraining yourself in a completely different culture.
With that said, do what makes you happy. You’ve worked hard to make this happen, so experience it the way you want to.
To conclude, if you’re a teenager and you want to travel, you’re going to need to save money.
Some people may think saving money is easy, and all it takes is spending less than you make, but our actions show us that this is all but easy as 80% of Americans are in debt.
For this reason, you need to create a savings account that is separate from your day to day spending account and contribute a percentage of your income to this fund. I suggest naming this account something that will inspire you to make regular deposits.
To help motivate you before you begin to save, you need to create a vision of where you want to travel and then set financial goals based on your vision.
Before I go, here’s another quick way you can save money to travel as a teenager. Get born into a really rich family and ask your parents for money. This is not a joke.