Most working-class Americans dream of traveling after they retire, but many don’t have savings to afford it. Traveling costs an arm and a leg and most Americans are ill-prepared financially for their own retirement, much less traveling. Financing travel dreams during retirement doesn’t have to be a headache, though. There are a variety of ways you can cut costs while traveling and even raise funding from your current life insurance policies. Traveling in your retirement should be about visiting the places on your bucket list rather than worrying about how you’ll pay for it. Follow these three tips to help make your travel dreams come true.
Look Beyond Europe
Many people speak of visiting Europe and the Mediterranean region one day, but these tourist destinations are massively expensive. Even staying at a hostel in some major cities in Europe can cost upwards of $100 a night. Don’t forget that luxury purchases like museum visits, food, and transportation costs can bring unexpected travel costs.
If you want to travel and not spend a ton, you should consider Southeast Asia or South America as your destinations. These countries have a much lower cost of living and offer cheaper amenities and attractions. Most hotels in cities like Kuala Lumpur or Hanoi cost anywhere between $30-$60 a night. That’s much more affordable than spending over $100 a night in London or Berlin.
Cab fares and rates are also much more feasible, and you can go to a fancy restaurant for less than $30 between two people. Plane tickets there will likely be your most significant expense and a few thousand dollars will get you plenty of spending money to enjoy the trip. Southeast Asia, in particular, has become a very popular destination for seniors and retirees to move to when enjoying their twilight years.
If you have a life insurance policy, you may be able to borrow against it to finance your travel plans. A life settlement is the sale of a life insurance policy to an investor for more than the cash surrender policy, but less than the payout to the beneficiary. The policyholder is no longer responsible for any payments associated with the life insurance policy and receives a more considerable sum than if the cash surrender option was used. It’s a win-win if you have more life insurance than you believe you’ll need to take care of your final costs. This makes life settlement an attractive way to raise funds for traveling for retirees.
Flexible Travel Times
Once you’re retired, you’ll have a lot more time on your hands, so being flexible with travel dates can also save tons of money. Instead of planning a trip down to Cancun in the middle of spring break season, consider waiting until August when tourist season is almost over. You’ll save a ton of money on hotel and travel costs since locals are happy to have the business. Don’t feel chained to following days of the week, either. Book travel on weekdays to save the most on transportation costs, since weekend tickets usually always cost more.