Toxic Workplaces: How to Stay Positive
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Keeping a positive mindset in a toxic work environment can be an extremely difficult task. I've spent some time in toxic work places and motivating workplaces and there is a vast difference between employee moral …

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Take a Vacation to Paradise….For Half the Price?

Submitted by on Friday, 16 August 2013No Comment
Take a Vacation to Paradise….For Half the Price?

Its Monday morning and your at the office sipping away at your second cup of coffee and thinking how you wish you had one more day to your weekend. Your college comes upto you and wishes you good morning with a perky smile and mutter something to yourself, muster up a fake smile and wish her a good morning as well. In reality, all you want is everybody to go away so you can finish waking up. Sound familiar? Join the I need a vacation club

When most people think about vacations, they think about a week or two on some paradise island like the one pictured above, running like a kid chasing candy along the beach, gitty and just looking all silly in the process. Who cares? you're on vacation. So what's stopping you from doing so? Oh right…the money.

Vacations can be an expensive yet fruitful investment. However, with a disciplined approach and goal in sight you can reduce your costs considerably. Now before you read on, you have to be disciplined, if you're not you have to do 20 push ups and sit-ups 3x a day for the next 8 weeks. Iff you don't manage to complete this..you're not disciplined. Ok ok relax i'm kidding…i meant 15 pushups….:)

Here are a few ways my wife and I save up for our vacation.

1) Open up a vacation fund. From every pay cheque, contribute a certain percentage of your cheque too this fund. Do not touch the fund, look at it, borrow or anything. Keep this separate from your rainy day fund. By doing so you're allocating and to a certain degree pre-paying part of your trip in advance. Once that money goes to the vacation fund, its gone from your day to day spending. This is a great way to as they say set it and forget it

2) Use travel rewards to pay down part of your trip. Now here is where the discipline really comes in. My wife and I share a travel credit card that we use obsessively yet responsibly. Our bank offers a mobile app to manage our account as well. What we do is use our credit card for just about any transaction you can think of from gas, groceries, small variety store purchases, you name it. If they got a charge machine, we're using it. We then immediately pay off what we charged from our mobile app. We do not wait for the bill to come rather as soon as we use the card, we pull up the mobile app and pay down whatever we just spent towards the visa. Its like using debit with travel perks. We took a trip to Jamaica (pictured above is our resort) that costed us $3000 US. We were able to contribute $1100 from our travel points towards the $3000, bringing our cost down to $1900 for the both of us. This was about 4-5 months of purchase activity, however, it paid off well.

3) Be a Deal Freak….Most people attribute the cost of vacation as hotel and transportation only, when in fact another large component is the fun money. That is money that you use while on vacation including drinks, food, drinks, activities, drinks, gifts and the oh so obvious one…drinks….You don't have to go to the most extensive and elaborate places but if you do, choose a night where these are discounted. For example, half price friday's on drinks at a certain bar or non-peak times of the day where activities might be discounted. My wife and I were in San Diego in the gas lamp district one evening. We were looking for a nice bar to visit but being a deal freak, I whipped up my foursquare app and viewed local recommendations and saw a decent bar that had half price drinks. It turned out to be an amazing bar and we met some other people there. We saved about $75 on the total bill compared to having the exact same meal and drinks the day before or day after at the same place.

Vacation's don't need to be elaborate, but enjoyable. Enough so that when you walk back into your regular life, you aren't looking at your bank account and whimpering like a lost puppy. Keep a disciplined approach, stay motivated and look forward to your vacation to help you get through those treacherous office days. Have something to look forward to, stay motivated and always remain positive.

 

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