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  • Writer's pictureSheron Olivine

Budgeting for My Dream Vacation - New Zealand


Two weeks ago, one of my best friends Michelle RW asked me to write a blog on "How do I save for my dream vacation to New Zealand?". In her honour, we will look at how to prep for a trip to the land of the long white cloud.

New Zealand is a dream destination for many travellers. With its stunning natural landscapes, friendly people, rich culture and unique wildlife, it's no wonder so many persons are eager to explore this beautiful country. From hiking in the mountains to relaxing on the beach, there's something for everyone to do. However, the cost of traveling to New Zealand can be significant and a bit daunting, especially if you're planning a long trip. Though the cost may be high, don't let it deter you, as with careful planning and smart saving strategies, you can make your New Zealand or any dream vacation a reality.

In this blog post, I've put together a guide on the best ways to save towards your dream vacation.

1. Set a Realistic Budget

The first step to planning for any vacation is to set a realistic budget. This means determining how much money you'll need to cover your expenses: airfare, accommodation, food, transportation, and activities. Be sure to factor in any additional costs such as travel insurance, visa fees, souvenirs and also leave some wiggle room in your budget for unexpected expenses.

Once you have a clear understanding of your expenses, you can then break it down into smaller, manageable goals.

Next, start working on a savings plan.

2. Create a Savings Plan

Once you've set your budget, it's time to create a savings plan dedicated specifically to your New Zealand or other selected destination trip. You have by now, determined how much you need to save each month to reach your goal. I recommend that you set up automatic monthly transfers from your main bank account to a dedicated savings account. Keeping your vacation savings separate from your other funds, results in you saving consistently and prevents you from dipping into your vacation funds for other expenses thereby helping you to stay on track towards achieving your savings goal.

Look for a savings account that offers a competitive interest rate and has no or very low monthly fees.

3. Start Saving Early

The earlier you start saving for your vacation, the more time you'll have to accumulate the funds in your vacation budget. Ideally, you should start saving at least a year before your planned departure date. This will give you ample time to save up enough money to cover your vacation expenses. The dedicated savings account mentioned above will help you keep track of your progress.

4. Cut Back on Expenses

You MUST look for areas in your normal budget where you can cut back on expenses such as eating out less, cancelling subscriptions you don't use, entertaining, shopping or finding ways to save on your utility bills. Making wise choices when it comes to expenses is one of the easiest ways to save money. This basically means looking for ways to reduce your spending on non-essential items.

5. Consider Alternative Income Sources

If you're struggling to save enough money from your regular income or finding extra money in your budget, consider alternative income sources. Look for opportunities to earn extra revenue such as, taking on a part-time job; selling items you no longer need such as clothing, electronics or furniture; offering your services as a freelancer; tutoring; selling handmade goods; dog-walking; or driving for a ride-share service. Even a few extra dollars a week can add up over time.

By earning extra income, you can accelerate/boost your savings and reach your savings goal faster.

6. Use Travel Rewards Programs

Another way to save on your dream vacation to New Zealand is to take advantage of cashback and travel rewards programs. Many credit cards offer cashback or travel reward points for purchases such as airline miles or hotel points which you can redeem for travel-related expenses [use to offset the cost of your trip].

Make sure to read the fine print and understand the terms and conditions of the rewards program before signing up.

7. Research & Book Affordable Accommodation in Advance

Accommodations can be one of the biggest expenses of any vacation. While luxury accommodations can be tempting, they can also eat into your budget quickly. To save money on your trip to New Zealand consider researching affordable budget friendly accommodations such as Airbnb rentals, motels, bed and breakfasts, backpacker hostels, vacation rentals or camping. These options can be significantly cheaper than traditional hotels and offer a more authentic travel experience.

It's important to look for deals on travel websites or consider booking accommodation that fit your needs and preferences directly and in advance, especially during peak travel season.

Keep in mind that prices can fluctuate, so it's important to book when you find a good deal.

8. Look for Travel Deals

Lookout for sporadic travel deals such as discounted airfare that can help you save money on your trip. Consider traveling during the off-season or shoulder season, when prices are typically lower. Be sure to sign up for email newsletters from travel companies and airlines to stay informed about upcoming deals. The peak travel season in New Zealand is during the summer months (December to February), which means higher prices for flights, accommodations, and activities. Traveling during the shoulder season (March to May and September to November) can save you money on your trip while still providing pleasant weather and fewer crowds.

9. Travel insurance

Consider purchasing travel insurance to protect yourself in case of unexpected events, such as trip cancellation, illness, or injury.

10. Consider Alternative Transportation Options

Renting a car in New Zealand can be expensive, especially if you plan to travel long distances. Consider alternative transportation options such as buses, trains, or even hitchhiking. Hitchhiking is a popular and safe option in New Zealand, and can be a great way to meet locals and experience the country from a different perspective.


See DREAM VACATION CHECKLIST - Things You Need to Know Before Travelling to New Zealand @


Saving for a dream vacation to New Zealand or to any other destination of your choice, may seem daunting and require some sacrifice, but with the right strategies and careful planning, it's entirely possible. By setting a realistic budget, starting to save early, cutting back on expenses, taking advantage of cashback and rewards programs, finding ways to earn extra income, planning ahead for expenses, and looking for travel deals, and considering bonus tips such as traveling during the off-season, opting for budget accommodations, planning your itinerary carefully, and considering alternative transportation options, you can make your dream a reality without breaking the bank.

So start planning, begin saving and get ready to experience the beauty of stunning landscapes, rich culture, and unique wildlife of New Zealand. By using these tips and strategies, you'll be one step closer to making your dream vacation to New Zealand a reality.

Happy travels!

Please Like, Comment and Share!

Next week, I will talk about the Cash versus Credit Card debate when managing money.

Follow me on Social media for bi-weekly tips [Wednesdays & Saturdays] to help you make budgeting a lifestyle.

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6 bình luận

30 thg 4, 2023

Excellent budgeting tips! Practical and useful, and the checklist was so detailed; more than a bonus. Will definitely use these tips to plan my next vacation.

Sheron Olivine
Sheron Olivine
08 thg 5, 2023
Phản hồi lại

Thank you. Enjoy your vacation to the max when you do!


29 thg 4, 2023

Thanks for the tips. With those tips maybe I can actually visit Australia. Awesome. Thanks again for the insight.

Sheron Olivine
Sheron Olivine
29 thg 4, 2023
Phản hồi lại

You are very welcome Robert. I too was inspired to bring my own dream vacation to Australia (The Land Down Under) to the forefront!


Michelle Williams
Michelle Williams
29 thg 4, 2023

Wow. Thanks so much for these budgeting tips for my trip😊. The checklist was out of this world and so detailed. Thanks for doing the heavy lifting for me. Well I’m off the budget for one of my dream vacations. 😎.

Sheron Olivine
Sheron Olivine
29 thg 4, 2023
Phản hồi lại

You are very welcome Bestie. I so enjoyed the process of writing it.

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