Martha works in the development department testing Advicent products to ensure the software is user-friendly and error-free for its partners.
As a newly married couple, my husband and I have heard the same piece of advice from many older couples: “Travel more.” However, planning a trip can be very intimidating financially, which is probably why those couples chose not to travel as much.
As a professional with influence on your clients’ perspective of financial planning, you have the ability to encourage them to pursue certain dreams that may seem daunting at first. This is especially true if you are targeting a younger clientele.
Tips for traveling to share with clients
Millennials generally share the desire to travel, yet so many are held back by student loans or low-paying entry level jobs. If your younger clients mention a desire to travel but are leery of the cost, here are seven tips you can share with them to enjoy a priceless adventure without the scary price tag.
1. Look early, but do not book early.
If it is necessary, airfare is typically the biggest expense of a trip. It is a good idea to check ticket prices months in advance to get a feel for how much to budget; however, booking too early can be counterproductive. Most airlines will not post a sale price more than four months in advance, so make sure clients keep their eyes out for those sales when they come up.
2. Do not follow the crowd.
A great way to save more on airfare is go during the off season because airlines, hotels, and other businesses upcharge their services during the busy seasons. Much lower prices are offered for times when weather conditions may not be “perfect.”
For example, my husband and I are visiting Denmark this October. Typically, summer is the time to visit Denmark, when the weather is nicer and there is more sunlight. An average ticket to Denmark in July is between $800-$900. Though we will likely encounter rainy days and fewer hours of sunlight in October, we were able to buy our tickets for $400 each. This same strategy is also true for different days of the week. Flight tickets can cost much more for Fridays and Sundays, so it is best to avoid flying on those days.
3. Fly budget and pack light.
Most regions offer a budget airline, like Southwest and Frontier in the United States. These low-cost flights do not offer all the luxuries that others may, but that is what allows their flights to be so much more affordable. For many of these airlines, there is a fee charged for checked bags, so pack light. Your traveling companions will not notice if you re-wear an outfit or two.
4. Skip the 5-star hotel.
After airfare, accommodations are usually the second largest expense in a trip. Thanks to sites like Airbnb and HomeExchange, there are increasing alternatives to hotels for travelers. Locals can open up their homes to offer a place to stay, from an air mattress in a studio apartment all the way up to beautiful homes in the country. Suggest that clients check out all of their options before looking into hotel prices at all.
5. Volunteer during travel.
Another budget-friendly housing option is to volunteer. Other expenses besides accommodation could also be included if you choose to volunteer with an organization who can plan your logistics for you. HelpX is a website for people seeking an experience who do not mind doing a little bit of work in exchange for food and accommodation. This option may also open up your clients’ minds to visit places they may have never even considered.
6. Capitalize on free options.
Many towns offer free options for entertainment. There may be discounts associated with certain days of the week or for younger visitors. For example, Europe often has “youth” discounts up to 25 years of age. There are many budget-friendly attractions that are definitely worth visiting, and odds are your clients can find at least a few options wherever they decide to travel.
7. Do not feel obligated to bring back souvenirs.
Your client’s trip is their experience. While it is generous to bring back a souvenir for all their friends and family members, that is just one more expense that is not necessary. Their loved ones will be interested in the stories and pictures, and do they really need any more stuff? If they have requested souvenirs, suggest that your client kindly asks them before they leave to cover the cost. If it is that important to them, they will not mind.
Often, these simple reminders can be the spark that triggers a dream fulfilled. Use these tips to help fulfill your clients’ sense wanderlust without having to plan their trips as far in advance.
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