My husband’s sister is getting married in May. She lives in Florida, and that’s where the wedding will be.
As a bonus, we’ll be in there during our first anniversary.
This trip is going to be really expensive. We haven’t yet put money aside for it, since we’ve been putting money toward other more pressing things.
With about four months to go, it’s definitely time for us to start socking away funds.
But, how much?
Paidtwice has a recent post explaining how a trip was a total budgeting failure. It failed because she didn’t take a detailed look into past trips to come up with a realistic dollar figure.
So…I’m going to do my best to estimate what this will cost. I’m going to put these estimates on the high side, and then add a cushion to the overall figure. My goal is to spend as little money as possible, so if we over budget and have money left over, we won’t spend it in Florida. We’ll use it to throw at our emergency savings.
We don’t yet know how long we’ll be there, or where we’ll stay. So…that leaves quite a bit up in the air still. We’re thinking a five-night stay, so I’ll use that for these calculations until it changes.
Please, if you think I’ve left anything out or if you have suggestions for me, let me know!
- Wedding gift $50. They’re registered on Bed, Bath and Beyond, and I’ll be able to use a 20 percent off coupon. We’ll choose something that will fit in our suitcase without much risk of breaking along the way.
- Dress for me to wear $30. I have absolutely nothing suitable to wear to a beach wedding. I will start shopping now at thrift stores and discount stores, and hopefully I’ll find something much less. I hope to only buy a dress, and use shoes I already have, if possible. Also, DH thinks he has something he can wear, so no need to budget for that now.
- Things we’ll buy solely to use on the trip. I’ll probably buy a better sunblock than I have now, for one thing. Other things inevitably come up. $20.
- Parking at the airport – no more than $6.75 per day, but we’re looking for online coupons, searching for deals in our Entertainment Book, and will use our AAA membership to see if we can save more here. For 6 days, that’s $40.50.
- Flight from Pittsburgh to Fort Myers – I’ve seen deals for $200. Let’s hope the price stays where it is, or dare I hope? Drops.
- Taxi from airport to hotel. Since we’re under 25, renting a car is not an option. Well, it is, but we don’t want to pay the insane daily surcharges for that. Double this, since we’ll also want to go from the hotel back to the airport. Let’s say the taxi costs $30 each way (I have no way to check rates yet). $60. If we didn’t have luggage, I’d say we could take the city bus. But…that’s a bad idea.
- Hotel/condo for five nights. We might join some family and rent a place to save money. I’ve seen a few that might be available for $800/week. If we fit 8 people into a place like that, that’s $100 per person plus tax, so about $220 for DH and I. If we have to get a hotel on our own, it will be much more expensive.
- Food. If we get that condo, we’ll cook breakfasts, maybe lunches and snacks there. We’ll probably share the cost of groceries. Since I can make breakfasts and lunches go a long ways, I’m only going to put $20 in this category.
- Two dinners will be covered (rehearsal and wedding dinner), and that leaves three more dinners. Let’s say each dinner is $20 per person (hope not!). That’s $120 for dinners for two.
- I always get airport food. I know I shouldn’t, but I do. I won’t try to hide that from my projected budget, but I don’t usually spend more than $5 per airport, so $10.
- Fun. We need to figure out some fun things to do after the wedding. I imagine we’ll spend some time on the beach n’at, but I don’t know what else. $50 for now.
- Total: $1,020.50.
- Adding 10% “Forgot to budget for this,” so total needing to save is $1,122.55.
I’m going to scour the internet for deals, as well as use my Entertainment Book for airport parking discounts, and we’ll go to AAA to get tour books and see if they can help us save.
Also, to get around the Fort Myers area, we’ll either share a rental car with our in-laws (who don’t have to pay the under-25 surcharge). If that doesn’t work out, we’ll take the city bus.
Ideas for saving money or things I’ve forgotten in this budget are appreciated!