Travel debt

Oct 7th, 2007, 12:13 PM
  #21  
 
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True true, I am single with no dependents so my finances are my own and affect no one else.


suze is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 12:55 PM
  #22  
 
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People who can not "afford" to travel and people who travel while having debt(s) are obviously not created equally.

If one lives paycheck to paycheck & does not have an emergency savings, I agree they should not travel.

However, being in debt should not prevent some from traveling. In our state, one should always have a mortgage (debt) for the property tax deduction. Most Americans who own a home have a mortgage. That debt should not stop them from traveling.

Even when DH & I can afford to pay cash, we always borrow ALL we can at 0% & low interest. Then use our money for investment at a higher rate and/or tax advantage. That qualifies as "debt", but we travel a lot. On 0% interest, we bought our last 2 cars (3yrs 0%), our $4500 TV (1 yr), our furniture (1yr), and our last PC (1yr). That did not prevent us from traveling & should not have done so. Obviously, we pay off the loans before the interest begins.

To me, there is no one answer for everyone. If one's net worth & income is high enough, debt is not an issue in deciding to travel.

Age also matters. We are in our 60's, been retired since 55yo, & have a spend down plan for our investments/savings. So debt would not matter in deciding whether to travel.

No shoe fits everyone.

Julie
Julie_Hurst is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:10 PM
  #23  
 
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Agree no shoe fits everyone. A financial planner would likely tell me to stop traveling for a few years. So it's a good thing I don't have a financial planner.

When I'm on my death bed, my "net worth" will mean absolutely nothing to me. As my dearly departed grand-mother would say "I've never seen a hearse carry a U-Haul."

luveurop is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:14 PM
  #24  
 
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I'm the opposite. I pay for my vacations, never charge. As to the other debt for whatever... screw it.
It'll get paid when it gets paid.

Prefer to travel now when I can, then be sitting there in my 80s (if I live that long) in that rockin chair having the words "could've" "should've" "would've" pass my lips. Rather have the memories of the adventures and tales to tell, whomever wants to listen to a crotchedy old lady

Life's too short... eat dessert first!
sandi is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:34 PM
  #25  
 
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I'm similar to Sandi. I always pay cash for my vacations. I charge little normally, but will occasionally buy something expensive, charge it, and pay it off on time.

If I don't have the cash to cover a trip, I don't go. The year before last, I bought a new (used) truck. I'm paying on time. That first year, it took a bit extra to start compensating for the car payments, so I didn't go on vacation that year. This year, I was back on track so I took my vacation.

I do think there is a difference between going into debt irresponsibly and having some debt while enjoying life.
toedtoes is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:54 PM
  #26  
 
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I had resisted posting on this thread, but now that the OP on that other thread has answered, I must say that it was exactly what I feared. That OP was saved money for a trip at the neglect of her debts. That is just bad form.

Normally in those cases, the OP should really take that money, pay off her debts, then start saving for a trip. But since money had already been invested in the form of a plane ticket, it was best that OP go on with her trip. Why waste that debt?

I just hate paying unnecessary interest, home mortgages and car payments aside. Credit card interests are the pits!

That's not to say I don't use my credit cards. I like the cash backs and points! I just pay it all off at the end of the month. And after that and saving in 2 separate accounts with 2 separate purposes, I'm broke at the end of each month.
mcnyc is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 02:21 PM
  #27  
 
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Yes, " 'debt' does mean different things to different people".

You are responsible to yourself both financially and emotionally, often one is at the expense of the other. Both are important.

Not everyone is debt free. Often debt arises from totally unforseen and uncontrollable circumstances. Sometimes the need for emotional survival is urgent and overwhelms a pragmatic and dutiful fiscal response. I once took a trip that was really not within my budget. I met an exceptional person who triggered the most profound shift in my thinking in the last 15 years. This cannot be measured in dollars/euros.
CopperandJade is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 02:27 PM
  #28  
 
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Outside of mortgage payments I have never made a car payment or any other interest payment in my life, including credit card interest, and I have never paid an annual fee for any credit card.

I do charge everything I can on one of my credit cards including utility bills, but I pay the balance in full each month. I receive FF miles for this credit card.

I haven't travelled as much as a lot of Fodorite's but I feel I have had some very wonderful trips. I always have the money available in my money market account to pay for all the charges on my credit card when the statement arrives.

I have always been conservation when it comes to financial matters. That has worked for me. As far as what others do I don't worry about it although I admit I have cringed regarding the way some people I know have handled their finances. But it is not my business of course. I am just glad that I am happy and relaxed with the financial decisions I have made.
LoveItaly is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 04:17 PM
  #29  
 
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Some persons reach the most ridiculous and contradictory conclusions when they try to manage other people's finances...much less, their own.

I can cite a personal experience.

About 30 years ago, when banks first introduced charge cards, some uptight bankers debated whether or not charge cards should or should not be used to pay for certain products or services.

One particular fellow, I recall, became very red in the face when it was proposed that groceries be charged on the card. He thought this practice would lead to all kinds of spendthrift spending. "Besides," he shouted, "how do you repossess food?"

The reply he received: "We are not proctologists...we are bankers. And so tell me, how do we 'repossess' an airplane trip?"

The banks accepted cards, thereafter, for anything legal.
USNR is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 05:09 PM
  #30  
 
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USNR, ironically that banker wasn't so far off. Just a couple of days ago I saw (on Today?) a piece about how much more people charge when they use a credit card instead of cash. Of particular note were fast food restaurants and groceries. The main reason fast food restaurants started taking credit cards is because they quickly learned that people will buy more when using a CC than when using cash. They add the "super size" or a dessert for example. And those who use cash at supermarkets are far less likely to pick up the "big ticket items" or to "stock up" on things like wine than those who are going to use a credit card.
NeoPatrick is online now  
Oct 7th, 2007, 06:28 PM
  #31  
 
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"And those who use cash at supermarkets are far less likely to pick up the "big ticket items" or to "stock up" on things like wine than those who are going to use a credit card."

We use our air-miles credit card for EVERYTHING we can - utilities, insurance, travel, and yes, even groceries. But we pay it off every month. We never pay a penny in interest; otherwise it would not be worth using the card. And I don't think I buy more with the card than I would with cash.

scdreamer is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 06:38 PM
  #32  
 
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I know I don't charge more on my FF credit card than I can pay in full when my monthly CC statement is received. And yes I put utilities, groceries, insurance premiums, gasoline, travel expenses, shopping purchases, you name it on my credit card. But some people know what they can afford and some do not.
LoveItaly is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 07:30 PM
  #33  
 
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I feel very old fashioned. In high school we were taught that, with a few exceptions (travel not one of them), interest is something to be earned not paid. It was a lesson that has served me well.
Gavin is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 12:22 AM
  #34  
 
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Debt and Travel. The world's economy is based on debt. Some debt is the result of irrational decisions to borrow money using a credit card and then paying 36% interest! Today our banking system is writing off billions of dollars of owed debt because they lent money unwisely. Anyone without debt should also be aware that they are paying for this debt because of increased prices. Merchants add dollars to their prices to cover non-payers. Bankruptcy allows credit abusers to escape their financial folly. Guess who pays for that folly.
GSteed is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 01:42 AM
  #35  
 
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There are times in our lives when we have money, and times when we do not. For most people, it is when they reach late middle age that they have most money. Their house are paid for, or their mortgages are low, their earnings are highest, their children have left home, they may have inherited wealth.

Younger people with children are often the least well-off. However, that is a time when you have more energy and can tolerate less comfort. Taking your children to visit other countries can be very rewarding, and will give you all memories that will bring you together as a family. Borrowing money to do that, provided you are careful, can be worth doing. If you wait until you have the spare cash, you will wait forever. Your children will have grown up and left home.
chartley is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 06:18 AM
  #36  
 
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<<If you are still diligently paying off your debts, you should be totally free to do whatever you want with the rest of your money (or credit).>>

Absolutely!

The main issue is how much debt the OP is referring to. I see no reason to wait until being "debt free." Having a manageable balance on credit cards shouldn't keep anyone from traveling, but it's a different story if the cc debt is large and traveling would put it beyond the person's ability to make timely payments.
Luisah is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 06:24 AM
  #37  
 
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I'm curious if any of the people who think nothing of traveling on credit and then paying their miminum or even just not paying their full balance monthly on credit cards are the same ones who post on the Europe board about which credit card or ATM card to use to avoid paying a 1, 2, or 3 percent conversion fee. Kind of seems silly to worry about the latter and not the former.
NeoPatrick is online now  
Oct 8th, 2007, 07:04 AM
  #38  
 
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< < Younger people with children are often the least well-off. However, that is a time when you have more energy and can tolerate less comfort. Taking your children to visit other countries can be very rewarding, and will give you all memories that will bring you together as a family. Borrowing money to do that, provided you are careful, can be worth doing. If you wait until you have the spare cash, you will wait forever. Your children will have grown up and left home.> >
Chartley, you are entirely right, and that is why we travel now - although we are older parents, we are dipping into our savings so that we will have less for our golden age. But, the golden age is now! With the kids we have traveled around the States, we went to France, will be in Egypt this winter and Botswana next. The kids have had experiences that not many their age have had, and have had their minds broadened incredibly. We waited till the kids were old enough to remember the trips, and were somewhat settled financially and career-wise.
We are selling off a bad investment (a rental house) at a loss to get out of some debt and free up more income so as to travel more.
Momliz is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 07:28 AM
  #39  
 
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I do have a mortgage, and college loans, and credit card debt (all cars are paid in full). The credit card debt is all on 3% or less - even the house is less than 6%.

I do travel, because the credit card debt will be paid off when husband gets out of college and starts working. We traveled to Maine this summer, to visit his grandmother - at age 92, she probably won't be around when we're out of debt.

I am also planning on having a baby - something others say we shouldn't do when in debt. However, we are still planning on it. Can't wait forever (I'm 38).

I am fiscally responsible, and know all will be paid off eventually. In the meantime, I keep my cash flow going and the debt going down.
GreenDragon is offline  
Oct 8th, 2007, 09:33 AM
  #40  
 
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I used my bonus to pay my last trip to Paris. Waiting decades might work for someone else, but I don't come from long-lived people and no one can tell me how far I'm going make it. My mother is nearly blind and in her mid-50s. Should that be my fate, I'll have the sights of Paris etched in my memory. And also, the memory of the spring time air on my still young and smooth skin as opposed to whatever it might be like a few decades on.

No place is guaranteed to always be there. That's what I learned when WTC fell and when New Orleans was flooded. Those places will never be like they were *before*.

There are many ways to regard and deal with finances. One has to choose and live with the consequences as best one can.
Belledame is offline  

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