In today’s world, it can be argued that the number one cause of heart failure is the high travel prices constantly appearing on sites like Expedia, Travelocity, and Orbitz. None of us like it, but we all have to deal with it one way or another. Of course the alternative is to not travel at all, but that wouldn’t be any fun, now would it?
You don’t have to be smarter than a fifth grader to know that the top online travel sites all boast the best deals, but actually offer about the same prices. The fact is, these sites have limited control over how much you pay, because the majority of the price is set by the airlines, hotels, cruise lines, etc. Step one of beating high travel prices is accepting that the situation is what it is. Step two, for those with limited travel funds, is to explore ways to still take that nice vacation without having to pay up front.
This short article simply touches on your options to travel now and pay later. “Travel now pay later” is not an entirely new concept. People have used credit cards to travel for a very long time, but now there are other options, which we’ll touch on along with credit cards.
The most recent “travel now pay later” option to become popular is simply referred to as vacation financing. But while typical financing (for home, cars, etc.) is done through banks, vacation financing is done through private organizations. Basically, the way it works is you register with a vacation financing company, pay only a small down payment to book a trip, and choose from their variety of travel options for your next vacation.
What’s bad about “travel now pay later” vacation financing?
It usually involves a down payment to book a trip. The companies offering the service are not traditional, well known banks.
What’s good about “travel now pay later” vacation financing?
There are no credit checks, so people with bad credit are welcome to participate. The monthly payments are usually small and very affordable. There are no interest fees. Finance packages include hotels, air, resorts, and cruises. They offer a best rate guarantee just like the other big travel sites. A site called “Easy Pay Vacations” has the top vacation financing program. A low funds or bad credit travel option for affordable travel.
Credit cards are the most well known way for people to take a vacation now and pay for it later. This option has been around forever, and is by far the most widely used to date. With credit cards, a user simply charges their vacation and makes monthly payments. I think you all know how this options works, but I’ll give you the negatives and positives just to be fair.
What’s bad about credit cards?
Credit cards usually have very high interest rates, especially for those with little credit or bad credit. Very little of your payment goes towards the principal balance. Credit cards almost always sneak in all kinds of fees and additional charges. It can often take several years just to pay off something like a vacation. These things can and often do get people in a lot of trouble. You have to have extremely good credit to get a good card.
What’s good about credit cards?
Small monthly payments. Offered by large, well known banks and financial institutions. You can often get airline points and miles towards reduced price travel (free trips plus added booking fees). They can build your credit rating if always paid on time.
Payday loans have been around for over 20 years, and as popular as they are, some people still won’t go near them. Basically the way it works is, you go into a payday loan store, fill out some forms and show proof of employment, and write them a postdated check for your next payday. In exchange, they give you cash for the amount on the check, less their fees. For example, you might write them a check for $275 in exchange for $200 cash, then they cash your check up to two weeks later once you’ve had a payday from your employer and have money in your bank to cover the check.
What’s bad about payday loans?
Be very careful. Payday loans are known for their super high interest and high bounced check fees. You should also be aware that payday loans can easily become addicting to many people and can easily get you stuck in a very expensive loop cycle of getting a new one to pay off the last one. This can be very expensive. In fact, many people would be much better off financially if they didn’t have to pay back payday loan fees. This option is extremely expensive even when your checks don’t bounce. Often new borrowers can only get very small amounts (as low as $50) until they establish a good record with the lender, which could take up to a year.
What’s good about payday loans?
Payday loans can be good when used for appropriate reasons. While you can use one for a small vacation, any financial expert would highly advise against it. Payday loans are best used for avoiding disconnection of home utilities, keeping your car from being repossessed, or stocking the empty fridge when you or your kids are starving. The only time payday loans are appropriate for travel is in the unfortunate event of a death or sickness in the family.
With these three “travel now and pay later” options in mind, obviously our vote is for vacation financing, but you be your own judge. For credit card or payday loans, simply Google options local to your area.