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How Can I Avoid Debt After Vacation?

Tips to avoid debt

Do you spend more than you accounted for after a vacation or work trip?


It happens to the best of us! We get overly excited and spend more than anticipated or simply have emergencies during the trip.


When we come home and realize we accrued debt during this trip, we have this urge to ignore it and say, “It will get paid with the debt strategy I have in place.” Well, that debt strategy considers your current debt, and if you continually keep adding more debt, it takes longer to pay it off.


Here is how to avoid debt after a vacation or work trip:


1. Calculate how much you overspent


You may be inclined to ignore how much you overspent because it was paid with a credit card, and you know “it will get paid”. What is happening is that you are extending the debt payoff deadline and increasing your monthly amount due.


You are getting used to this cycle of “I will worry about it later.”


It is not in your best interest to have a debt payoff plan and not work on your relationship with money. Instead of deciding to ignore how much you overspent during your trip, I encourage you to review your bank statement and calculate the exact number. You may be surprised that the number is less than what you expected it to be! I encourage you to face your numbers.


Let’s say you went over budget by $500. Now, how do we pay it back as soon as possible?


2. Include it on your budget to pay it back now


Add it to your current budget, outside your monthly amount due.


How can you pay $500 towards the credit card the fastest so you do not carry this debt?


Try moving things around in your current budget to see if you can pull from other categories.


It can look like cutting fun money for the month by half. You can pause a few subscriptions so that cash can temporarily go to the debt.


Do what you can with the current budget and see how much you can pay off the debt.


3. Make it a priority to pay it back


If you used a credit card or grabbed money from your savings to fund the rest of your trip, it is crucial to prioritize putting it back. Otherwise, you are borrowing from future you who will need you to have the emergency fund fully. High-interest debts can quickly spiral out of control if you ignore them.


Paying it back as soon as possible allows you to stay on track with the past debt versus accruing more and taking longer.


4. Find ways to make extra cash to pay it back sooner


Find side jobs that you may have done that can be temporary. It can be driving for Uber, Uber Eats, babysitting, dog sitting, freelancing, selling things you do not need on the Facebook marketplace, etc.


These side hustles can be temporary, or you can keep them after fully paying off the debt. The beautiful part is that you can always pick them up when needing extra cash.


5. Add a cushion and emergency fund to your next trip


Spending more during vacation is normal and happens!


You can prepare yourself to avoid coming back with debt. I’ve recently started adding emergency funds for my trips. Should anything happen, I can just take care of myself and my family instead of freaking out over money and charging it to a credit card.


If you are starting to budget for your trip, always assume you will spend more. Sometimes, we want to make sure we don’t spend too much, and we remain hopeful, but the fact is that on vacation, we end up spending more. Prepare yourself as much as possible!


This is your reminder that when you return from work trips or leisure trips, you pay off the debt you accrued during the trip. Do not add it to the tab to pay later; if you do it once, you will do it again, and your debt will keep increasing.


This is one step towards working on your relationship with money. The better you plan your trip, the less debt you will accrue on future trips. Trust me, it’s all about planning and problem-solving. This way, you are always in control of your money.


I’m rooting for you! Taking vacations is fun, and I love that you are allowing yourself to see the world. Keep these five tips in mind to avoid accruing debt after vacations.


When we work together:

  • I help you set action steps to meet your financial goals
  • I help you create a budget that works for you and empower you to manage your money
  • I help you enjoy your life now while you work on your financial goals and plan for your future


If this resonates with you, I invite you to work with me! It would be an honor to be part of your money journey. This is how I help my clients, improving their relationship with money so they are confident in managing their money. Book a sales call.


I cannot wait to be part of your journey!

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Orlenda Cortez

Welcome to my corner on the internet! I’m obsessed with using money as a tool because it led me to pay off $30K in consumer debt in a year and a half, helped me save $20K in nine months to have my dream wedding in Costa Rica and is helping me build the life I never saw my family experience. Now I want to help others do the same!

Orlenda Cortez
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