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Don't Plan a Vacation Without This Trip Budget Planner

Use this travel budget worksheet and our tips before planning your next trip. It will help you save money and stress!

By: Krista for CheapThriftyLiving.com
Updated June 11, 2018
Trip Budget Planner

Shocked to See Your Vacation Bill? This is Why You Need a Trip Budget Planner!

Planning a trip on a budget sounds stressful but it doesn't have to be. It's always worse when you come home from your trip and look at the enormous bill that you have built by not having a budget. That's why we say don't plan a vacation without this Trip Budget Planner.

Not only do we have a printable trip budget spreadsheet for you but we will be offering lots of tips and resources for helpful calculators, apps, and so much more. This will make planning your next vacation far less stressful. When you make a travel budget planner, you can relax.

Once you have a trip budget template, the stress of planning it out is lessened. That's because it's all broken down by type of expense. There are also many resources to help you figure out what things cost in different places, and we will step those out as well.

Since we all have different opinions on what a vacation budget should be, this page has lots of tools to help you find what's best for you. Whether you want to go on holiday for least amount of money possible or you want to be able to spend the smallest amount of money without the quality suffer, you will be able to plan something to match what you're looking for.
 

Don't Plan a Vacation Without This Trip Budget Planner

How to Budget a Trip: Factors to Consider

Before planning your trip, give the following some thought. These tips provide a great jumping off point so that everything is more streamlined.

  1. If you're traveling alone, then you're the only one who needs to make decisions but if you are traveling with a partner, family, or another group, make sure they are involved in the planning process as everyone's vacation interests differ.
     
  2. Would you prefer buying a packaged travel deal versus planning everything yourself? If you are unsure, go ahead and do the budgeting for your trip on your own and then compare your budget to the deals you find. Does a deal include what you're looking to do while still in your budget? Then that may be better. It is nice to have the freedom to do what you want when you want, so it really depends on your vacation style and interests.
     
  3. Besides destination travel, such as to and from the airports, how do you plan to get around? Do you prefer walking? Renting a car? Taxis? Many places also have bike or Segway and other single person and group transportation options, which can be fun and different.
     
  4. What is your and your companions' vacation comfort level? Do you need to stay in 5-star hotels or would you rather spend more money on food or entertainment and stay in a budget lodging? Do you want to stay in only one place for the entire vacation or is it smarter to move around based on your travel locations?
     
  5. What sort of vacation do you want to experience? Do you want to relax or explore everywhere possible? For most people, the best vacations have both.
     
  6. Don't forget to be realistic about what you want to see and how long you have. When you budget your trip, first write down everything you want to see. Use travel books or websites to find both tourist locations and hidden gems.
     
  7. Look at that list and mark what you have to see. Then revise again and again. Most people tend to over plan and then find that they are exhausted before they are halfway through their trip. Mark the locations on a map to see what can be lumped together and what may be too far to make happen. It's also important to consider whether you think you will be visiting this location again in the future.
     
  8. Don't forget to include the various travel factors into your plans, such as airport security, layovers, jet lag, and time changes. 

Travel Budget Worksheet

Click here or on the image to download your copy of our Budget Trip Planner. This printable worksheet includes space to plan your estimated and actual numbers for travel, lodging, transport, meals, activities, and other.

This helpful trip budget spreadsheet also has a few more pieces of information to keep yourself super organized, like space to write in your destination, dates of your trip, as well as the total estimate and actual cost of your trip.

Being able to write everything down and work it out on a printout is going to help you visually see what you want to do and what's reasonably within your budget. You can always print out as many copies as you need. You can even do it by day or location to break down everything even further.

Travel Budget Worksheet

Trip Budget Calculators

Not sure where to start when planning a budget for a trip? There are plenty of online resources to help you. One of the most convenient tools is the trip budget calculator. These calculators have inputs for important aspects of a trip like location, type of budget, number of people, number of days, driving cost, currency conversion, lodging, and more.

You may need to visit more than one calculator, depending on what you're looking to calculate but these are all free, which makes it so much easier to plan and, of course, stay on budget!

Travelex has a travel budget calculator that lets you choose a location, pick your budget, number of people, and how many days you want to vacation. It will then provide you with the estimated total spending money you need. Note that with this calculator, it does provide the total in the location's currency, so you will have to convert the currency using another calculator. There are also lots of tips and information about planning a trip on this site.

Try the Travelex Travel Budget Calculator here.


With the Budget Your Trip calculator, you will first choose your location. Once on that page, you can choose your type of budget, and the currency you want to see. It then provides the averages for various time periods and for one or two people. Below that, you can see the average costs for things like accommodations, food, entertainment, tips, even "Scams, Robberies, and Mishaps," as well costs as various popular tourist activities and more. 

Try the Budget Your Trip Calculator here.


Travelmath has a travel cost calculator that lets you get the average expense for cost of driving, cost to fly or drive, hotels in the area, college or university, and has a currency converter as well, amongst other options. After choosing what you want to see, you can then type in the "From" and "To" options and calculate. Once you calculate, there are even more options for further details. You can even calculate cities within a radius to help determine other location options.

Try the Travelmath Cost Calculator here.


These specific travel calculators certainly help you plan and budget your trip without extra hassle. If you enjoy doing the math yourself and feel up to the challenge, you can always create a spreadsheet with all the details and add up everything on your own. But, with these amazing free resources, it's so much easier to use them to plan or as part of the planning process.

Trip Budget Planner Apps

Trip Expense Manager is a free app that logs nearly anything you would need for your vacation. You can import and export your own data, split expenses, write descriptions and memories, and overall plan and determine details about your trip.

It is available in the Google Play store.

Trip Expense Manager App

Tripcoin is a free app that "helps you understand your spending habits while traveling so you can be on top of your budget and organize your finances, no matter what currency you're using." This app can also be used with or without an internet connection, which is super helpful while traveling.

It is available in the Apple store.

Tripcoin App

TrabeePocket is a free app that makes it easy to keep track of travel expenses. You can see your spending, balance, how much cash you're using and what's going on your card. When you travel, it's so difficult to keep track of when and how you're spending money. This app can help without hassle.

It is available in the Google Play store and the Apple store.

TrabeePocket App

Trail Wallet is a free app (up to 25 items) that makes it easy to track all of your expenses while you travel. It has a beautiful interface that clearly shows you how your spending. It allows you to set your own budgets by trip or month and has lots of features to help plan.

It is available in the Apple store.

Trail Wallet App

How do you plan your trips?
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I really like all the resources that you've included in this article! I studied abroad last semester, and this is definitely something that I would have found useful.

There are a lot of great resources here! My husband and I are starting to plan a belated honeymoon to Thailand, and are so overwhelmed with converting currencies and figuring out what we can actually afford. I will have to bookmark this page to help with all of our planning!

To be perfectly honest, I'm not the best at setting a budget when it comes to travel. I love going on vacation, so I often adopt the "YOLO" mentality.

I've never used a travel calculator but, wow, it looks like it makes everything so much easier!

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