Are sneaky summer expenses ruining your budget? Not any more!

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By: Good Nelly
on 7th Jul,2015

But, summer months arrived and everything went for a toss.
Are sneaky summer expenses ruining your budget? Not any more!

Just think about a situation! You have been doing your budget quite nicely and are very satisfied with your performance. But, summer months arrived and everything went for a toss. Why? Because you splurged without keeping a track of your spending; or, it might be that you had to spend more on a vacation than what you had planned. But, this time, take extra caution! Here are 7 ways to avoid some of your sneaky summer expenses this time.

1. Avoid roads with toll tax

If you're planning a road trip, then you may set your GPS to the destination address and follow the directions and keep on paying the toll taxes on the road. However, if you research a little before hitting the road, then you may find an alternate route where you don't have to pay the toll taxes. It may make your trip a little longer but you may save even after paying more for the extra mileage. However, calculate whether the fuel cost or the toll tax will be more, so that you can make the right decision.

2. Fill up your fuel tank beforehand

On your road trip, it is better to fill up your fuel tank before you reach a tourist town. The gas price is relatively more in big towns or tourist towns. So, before you reach the town, you can fill up your fuel tank from the gas stations on your way. The reason being the gas stations in the tourist cities usually charge a premium because they know that the tourists have not many options in the area; so, a tourist is bound to pay more per gallon every time they run out of gas.

3. Use frequent flyer miles to purchase tickets

If you have accumulated frequent flyer miles, then this is the time to use them in order to buy your vacation tickets. Usually, the flight tickets are relatively higher during the vacation time. But, it might not affect your holiday budget if you have sufficient frequent flyer miles. Therefore, if you have them, use them instead of keeping it for future use.

4. Carry your own personal items

Often you need to spend quite a lump sum amount if you need to purchase your personal items and/or everyday essentials in your vacation. They usually cost more when you have to buy them from a hotel or a resort where you're staying. So, stock up your essentials when you go on a vacation.

5. Check out the cost of a pet sitter

When you go out on a vacation and want to leave your pet with a pet sitter, then check out beforehand, how much they charge per day. A professional dog sitter usually charges about $50 per night (though it may vary from one place to another). So, check out the prices and look for a place where your pet will be safe. And, if you're really lucky, you can have a kind neighbor with whom you can swap pets during vacation. You look after his/her dog when he/she goes on a vacation and you leave your dog with him/her when you go on a vacation.

6. Return movie DVDs on time

There's perhaps very less number of people who don't enjoy watching a movie alone or with friends along with chilled beer and snacks, especially during summer. However, when you rent a movie, make sure you return it on time. It might seem to you that you need to give only $1.50 per night as a late fee if you don't return it on time. However, just calculate how much you'll spend unnecessarily if you build the habit of returning movies late. And, if you forget returning a movie, then you'll accumulate late fees without your knowledge.

7. Try to not use public computers on vacation

If you do not carry your laptop with you on your vacation and need to use the computer in the hotel business center, then beware. The computer might have spyware which can record your keystroke. Thus, the websites you're visiting, along with the usernames and passwords, will automatically get stored in the computer. So, try to avoid using a public computer. Even if you need to use one, make sure you log out from the websites, delete your search history and shut down the browser before you leave. Do not think twice to devote that time even if you're in a hurry.

So, you plan your summer vacation successfully on a budget and after you come back, make sure you check your credit card and bank statements, and look for any unexplained charges. This is because, when you use your credit cards in any restaurants and hotels, the workers can copy your account numbers without you knowing about it. Not only you should check the immediate statements but make sure you do it for several months. The people who noted your details may not use them immediately. Therefore, if you check the statements for several months, you'll be able to detect any fraudulent activity.

Follow these tips and enjoy your summer months!

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