Summer is here, and chances are you’re already dreaming up the trip of a lifetime. For some people, this might mean making the most out of something like NetJets to make their travels on their vacation more enjoyable, whilst others only really care about where they actually end up on vacation. When you’re on vacation, it’s easy to feel like money is no object. This, however, can lead to an imbalanced budget that can make subsequent months unbearable. If you want to skip the fall financial blues, there are ways to keep to your budget while on vacation.

Vacations cost money; this is no surprise. The mistake that so many make when booking a vacation is accounting only for the cost of the flight and hotel. If you want an accurate picture of what your vacation will cost, budget for associated expenses such as food and drink, leisure activities, and souvenirs. Finding the right hotel can make your vacation a lot more affordable, for example if you are going on vacation to Denver, Colorado, a cost effective hotel like the Crowne Plaza Denver, could make it easier on your budget. A realistic mindset about how much money you’ll spend will help you set a realistic goal for how much you need to save. This is even more important if you want to travel outside of the US, for example of you’re going to somewhere like Southeast Asia, it’s important to not only know where you’re going but also how much it will cost. Places like the Philippines have small islands that tourists visit on vacation so they use ferry services like 2GO online booking to find out how much it will add to their budget.

Keep reading to discover how you can have a stellar summer vacation without breaking the bank.

Plan, Plan, Plan

Okay, you want to be able to be a little spontaneous. How often do you get to go on vacation, after all? Here’s the trick, though: budget for your spontaneity. Review restaurant menus and the excursions you’re interested in ahead of time to get an idea of how much fun costs in the area that you’re visiting. Then, create a daily budget that gives you a little bit of wiggle room should an unexpected opportunity arise.

Again, the key here is realism. Find a happy medium between a daily budget that will leave you broke and a daily budget that you’ll only be able to achieve by sitting in your hotel room. Keep to it!

Save Your Pennies

If you’re just starting to save up for a vacation, creating a separate account for your trip is a fantastic way to put money aside. When you try and save within your regular account, it can be confusing to keep track of how much you’ve saved and how much is allocated for bills and living expenses.

If you don’t want to go to the trouble of opening a new account, try the five-dollar challenge. Every time you break a large bill and are left with a five-dollar bill, put it into a collection jar. When the time comes, you’ll likely have more cash than you thought possible for your summer vacation. This is also a great way to stash away a little spending money for that already-planned vacation.

Again: Be Realistic

Here’s a pill that’s hard to swallow: it may not be your year to take a week-long trip. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a great time at home. There are a multitude of fun day trip options, right in your own backyard. Don’t discount the fun you can have on a staycation. Save money this year by exploring your hometown or region, and perhaps next year you’ll be in a place for your dream vacation.

Plan, save, and use common sense. These three simple steps will give you a summer you’ll never forget.