Honest Opinion? Affordability!!

Jun 25th, 2002, 03:26 PM
  #21  
suzanne
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Responding to those who commented on my "rent expense" -

Yes, it is generally more financially sound to own rather than rent...but I didn't mention I have a well-below-market rent-stabilized apartment (yep, I'm one of those lucky NYers). My BF and I share the place, which makes it very affordable. We've looked into buying, and with a financial advisor found that it would cost us a lot more, even w/the tax breaks, b/c of the high maintenance cost of apartments in NY. We're talking $1200+ a month on TOP of the mortgage payment. ACK! Thus, we're staying put.

(sorry if this is too much information)
 
Jun 25th, 2002, 03:33 PM
  #22  
Billy
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You go Suzanne. That's awesome!!! Some of us aren't that lucky I guess. I still say it's a lot of sacrifice and effort. Like me I live somewhere where you need a car. I'm unable to go without a car.
Plus some other expenses- Home etc..
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 02:34 AM
  #23  
Jim
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Suzanne, did your financial advisor factor-in the equity you'd be building in a condo or coop, which would appreciate significantly every year? Sure, the monthly costs might be higher, but when the time comes to relocate, as an owner you'd have a bunch of equity, whereas as a rented you have a bunch of cancelled checks.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 04:18 AM
  #24  
Stephanie P.
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I just don't understand why people have to spend so much on vacations. I went to Florida twice and stayed north of Ft. Lauderdale, I paid $59 a night for a week at the Coral Key Inn that had a full kitchen and clean room in general and the airfare was around $190. I really enjoyed myself and spent only $300 during the week. Those 2 trips cost me about $1,500 total.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 04:19 AM
  #25  
Workin' Girl
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Am fortunate to have the money in the bank. And that is the result of being very conservative and healthy. How it usually works is that airline tickets are charged and the bill paid before we leave. Almost all other expenses are charged, then paid in full when due.

This is sort of related to how I do my Christmas shopping. I don't spend a lot, but buy things from late September till mid-December. I pay all credit bills in full each month, but by shopping over a few months, I don't feel any pinch.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 04:27 AM
  #26  
xxx
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Being indebt soon after college and having those nasty student loan payments every month when I was making a low hourly wage, I don't have any trouble at all paying off credit bills every month.

I put some things on credit when I vacation but nothing I can't pay of in a month 2 months tops.

Travel is one of the most important things in my life. I have always found a way to do. I might be staying in a $3 a night hotel room in Egypt but I am still there. I can eat rice and beans for a month and then take off for a month with the savings. So Yes I save don't find the joy in coming back to a mountain of debt.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 04:29 AM
  #27  
xxx
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That is I save and I travel with in my means
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 04:33 AM
  #28  
cindi
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In the military, so flights are free on military planes if there is room. Great way to travel, I go to Europe about 4 times a year. Stay in 1 and 2 star hotels or military clubs, use public transport, do my research. I don't make that much money, I put all the travel stuff on a credit card and pay it off every month.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:45 AM
  #29  
depends
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We recently took a trip to Paris. Bought the plane tickets on the www about 6 months ahead (about $1000 for the two of us). We were able to absorb the cost in that amount of time pretty easily (and we'd been saving). The hotel for 10 days came to about $780 (for 9 nights). Again, we charged, but paid it off right away.

If you're charging then paying it off, you'll be adding significant costs to your trip. And delaying your next trip even further. Imho, bite the bullet and save the money beforehand. Even if you put so many dollars in a box every day, lol.

I live in NYC too, and saving for a downpayment can take a real commitment, though property values in some neighborhoods can jump significantly in a short period of time. Studio apartments, even outside of Manhattan, can go for $100,000 to $150,000.

Because we don't need a car, and because our apartment is ownded by my bf's family, we're able to hold onto more of our money.

Planning a vacation carefully can help reduce travel costs and can help you create an experience where you're satisfied you spent your dollars the way you want to.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:55 AM
  #30  
xxx
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Ditto on down payments I still don't own yet. I could afford Brooklyn but I would be miserable there, have done it before. I rent in Manhattan.

For those of you casting stones at renters, we are now facing the toughest job market in NYC in 30 years. Those of us not wanting to jump into debt when we don't know weather or not we will still have our jobs in a year are acting prudently. Spending a few thousand is much different than putting down 30 thousand.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:55 AM
  #31  
xxx
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Did I say $30,000 for Manhattan it is more like $65,000.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:59 AM
  #32  
xxx
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Studio Apartments in my building in the 80's near York are small not even 200sq feet, they sold for $170,000 last March a steal in Manhattan. That is one room and you can almost hear a pin drop from the apartment above you.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 05:01 PM
  #33  
Rags & Riches?
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Come on people. You all must be paid.
It seems a lot of you may must make that big salary to travel to Europe, caribbean 2+ times a year. There's no way I can do that expense. It's all about the salary. Someone earning for example $10-12hr, can't afford to go to Europe, Hawaii, Islands, twice or more a year. Lets be real here!!
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:32 PM
  #34  
Lena
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You don't have to make a "big salary" , whatever that is, to go on vacation. There are lots of deals out there. It cost us $800 to go to Spain last May including flight, transportation, hotels (2-3 stars), and admissions. You can find deals to Mexico for $600 dollars for the whole week in an AI resort on travelzoo.com for example. You just have to do some research.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 06:50 PM
  #35  
Maggi
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Our travel has been greatly improved since the advent of the internet. I get a lot of "hot deals" e-mailed to me. We keep a mental list of the places we'd like to visit, and when a deal comes along to one of those places and it coincides with our vacation time, we jump on it. I flew $199 roundtrip from New York to Brussels a few years ago. Last weekend I visited a friend outside of Philly for $129 RT from Detroit. The best steal so far has been a 13 day luxury cruise (balcony cabin) of the Mediterranean with 3 day, five star hotel stays in Athens and Istanbul, for $1199 per person (including airfare from New York to Athens). Never carry cash - I charge EVERYTHING on my FF Miles Visa (we pay it off each month), so we are flying free to Hawaii in September. Until then we will bank as much money as we can, charge accomodations, food, car, etc. to our VISA and pay it off when we get home. That way we will get miles for our trip expenses as well. I admit, it does take some discipline to charge everything, because there is a tendency to spend more when you are not paying cash, so be careful!
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 03:11 PM
  #36  
travel lover
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Wow great tips!! Good subject!
I'm searching for a awesome deal for the Fall. Looking into October. Would love to go somewhere nice & romantic without an expensive price. I'll have to start searching more travel sites.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 03:24 PM
  #37  
love
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My husband and I take two to four trips per year, plus I do a yearly trip with a friend and he does some solo ski trips. We are not wealthy but I LOVE to plan so I spend lots of time online looking for the best deal.
My strategy is to pay for as much as possible (on credit cards, with ver low rates) BEFORE the trip, the earlier the better (as long as we can get a good deal); then we pay it off before we leave for the trip. I hate credit card debt so as long as I have 30-60 days before we leave, I pay it all off.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 04:26 PM
  #38  
Gi
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I'm real curious. What is the aveage price you all pay for a vacation. The fact you all pay them off so fast is amazing! As much credit card debt America is in, I can't believe everyone pays off these extravagant vacations before they leave.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 05:15 PM
  #39  
Ms.H
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I have to be the one to admit it helps that we earn a decent living, have no kids, mortgage paid off. We take 2-3 trips/year. Normally, we live below our means--I don't shop at Saks (but could), I shop outlets and TJ Maxx, we don't eat out extravagantly, and even when we do travel, we search for deals on hotels, and may pick "one or two" really nice places to stay, but the rest of the time, we just make sure it's a 3*** Holiday Inn, etc., etc. While on vacation, we may eat breakfast at the hotel (esp. where it's included--and we try to get it included when we book), may eat lunch on the road (last trip, we stopped at WalMart, bought a cooler, drinks, snacks, bread, PB&J, etc. for the car) and ate dinners out--most average priced. We could afford to do more, but we live more down to earth. We charge everything to credit cards--absolutely everything, and pay off the bills at the end of the month. I've been at the other end when the money wasn't there, and basically if you wanted to take a trip, you charged it and paid the penalty later.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 07:01 PM
  #40  
laura
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We have money taken out of the paychecks every month and put in a savings account for travel. We also usually put any bonuses in the same account.

We try to save enough for one big family vacation and several long weekend trips per year. We don't normally charge anything; however, we will charge it if something unexpected comes up - for example, if my husband travels somewhere interesting on business and I have a chance to meet him there.
 

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