Although we saved quite a bit for this vacation out of my bonus last month, we have a budget, & want to stick with it as much as possible.
Here's our current trip budget, for a six day trip to Maui, with four people (two adults, & two kids)
- Flights - tickets from Seattle to Maui are generally pretty expensive, so we opted to drive to Bellingham (about two hours away) to take advantage of a huge sale that Alaska ran this summer. Total ticket price for all four - $1500
- Hotel - this was our big splurge. We have two young kids, & have made the mistake of staying in one hotel room before - as soon as the kids are asleep at 8:00 pm, the lights go off. Nothing like sitting in the dark on your vacation while your kids snore in the background. ;-) We rented a two bedroom at this place in Ka'anapali, complete with a full kitchen & washing machine. Cooking the majority of our meals will obviously save money, & honestly, we enjoy eating at "home" for meals more than dining out with the boys. ;-) - $4500. Gulp.
- Rental car - Our budget was $300, and we just booked a car with Avis for $260.
- Food - I'm having a hard time predicting this one without knowing how much grocery prices will be on Maui, but here's what I've estimated so far. I've made a menu based on the food that will be easiest to prepare. We're also planning on bringing spices, etc from home to keep costs down. We are eating a few meals out, which is included. We have $800 budgeted, but I'm hoping to keep it closer to $750, based on the breakout below.
- Lunch & snacks for the plane - $50x2 for each way
- Dinner for all four of us, our first night - $100
- Dinner for M + Me (our one adult only dinner) - $150 (we'll have wine ;-))
- Lunch out while we're exploring Wailea - $100
- Groceries - $300 (total guess)
- Activities - Our goal is $500, total, but we're at close to $600. We may cut the Ocean Center out, so we don't overspend, if we're not under on other categories.
- Kid's luau (while we do our adult dinner) :-) - $100
- Snorkel cruise for four (includes lunch) - $350
- Snorkel gear rental - $50
- Maui Ocean Center tickets - $100
How do you plan your vacations? Do you stick to a strict budget? Prefer to splurge or save in any one category?