Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

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novatrixs
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Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by novatrixs » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:06 pm

I'm currently wrestling with the question of whether I'm saving enough that I can spend an unexpected bonus without guilt. I know the old adage is to save until it's painful, and right now I'm doing just that. For the past year I've been putting over a third of my income, not including company match, into my 401k and roth. I just got word this week that I will be receiving a substantial (to me) bonus and when I was telling my mother on the phone she said "Great! You can max out your 401k for the year!"

My problem is before she said that I was thinking to take the money and go on a trip that I've been dreaming about since 2nd grade. I'm now worried that wanting to use all the money (and the trip will take all the money) on something I want might be falling into the same trap of "well I work hard, so I deserve to buy <insert wish here>" that gets so many people into financial trouble.

So my question is, is there a point where a person can spend their money without the guilt that they are being irresponsible? Or because we can't predict the future it is irresponsible to not save as much as you can?

Edit to Include Relevant details:
Emergency funds: 6 months worth in cash + $1000 in paper I-bonds
Debt: 14k 5 year car loan @1.49%
Age: 23
Salary: ~60k
Job: Very Stable
Last edited by novatrixs on Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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mhc
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by mhc » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:12 pm

If you have no debt, an emergency fund, and a stable job while saving 33% of your income, then take the trip.

Otherwise, more detail is needed about your situation (e.g., debt, emergency fund, spouse, kids) to make a decision.

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Hub
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Hub » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:33 pm

Saving 33% of your income is great and will get you to your financial goals.

On the other hand at your age, the bigger chuck you can get compounding the earlier the better. Make hay while the sun shines and all that (as in invest now while you know you can). Plus there's that car loan.

At 23 yrs old I took that trip on a credit card, so it's easy to give advice from upon high.

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mhc
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by mhc » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:37 pm

After looking at the details, take the trip. It has been your dream for a long time. Go for it.

Do you mind sharing the details about the trip?

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JupiterJones
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by JupiterJones » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:38 pm

How much will the trip cost?

Personally, my priority would be to pay off that car debt (yes, it's low-interest, blah, blah, blah... that doesn't matter to me).

But I would probably slip in a small vacation as a "reward" to myself. Not an $5000 trip, but maybe a $1000 one. It will allow you to recharge and come back to work even more productive (and maybe get another bonus as a result!)

If your dream vacation is more than that, then I'd save it as a reward for paying off the car. But again, that's just me. YMMV.
Stay on target...

Caduceus
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Caduceus » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:55 pm

Congratulations on the bonus! Just brainstorming ... would there be a way to do a little of both? I'd definitely give yourself some kind of reward with the bonus and for saving consistently. I think most of us work better with incentives built in along the way to help us hit our goals. And travel is always so educational, so you will get some return on the money spent. But is there a way to try to do a little of both? Say, by compromising on your accommodation during the trip (don't have to live in hotels perhaps - hostels? Or taking connecting flights with slightly longer layovers which can sometimes shave 20% - 30% of flight costs), and then you can increase your 401(k) contribution?

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BestWishes
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by BestWishes » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:58 pm

Take the trip.

Here is what I tell my own kids. Save money but don't deprive yourself too much. Enjoy life but don't jeopardize your future.

I believe, as with most things, life is about balance.
novatrixs wrote:Or because we can't predict the future it is irresponsible to not save as much as you can?
Yes you can't predict the future. One day we got a call that a close relative passed away. She was 36!

You are doing better then most people your age already. Keep up the good work. Keep saving 33% of your salary. Pay off the car loan. Reward yourself once in a while, just not too often and not too much :sharebeer

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Default User BR » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:03 pm

JupiterJones wrote:Personally, my priority would be to pay off that car debt (yes, it's low-interest, blah, blah, blah... that doesn't matter to me).
And I would not pay it off. It makes little financial sense. It might have a emotional boost for some people. I try to keep emotion out of my finances these days.


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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by BW1985 » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:07 pm

If you're still not comfortable taking the trip may I suggest setting a short term goal for the amount of savings you'd like to have. Then, once you achieve that amount take the trip!
"Squirrels figured out how to save eons ago. They buried acorns. Some, they dug up, for food. Others, they let to sprout, in new oak trees. We could learn from squirrels." -john94549

Mandrale
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Mandrale » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:08 pm

Take the trip while you can. You are already doing so well, I doubt that one trip is going to offset you.

On the same note of not being able to predict the future, what if something bad were to happen to you and you were never able to take the trip due to physical/emotional reasons?

Live while you're young, and able to, but be responsible. There's absolutely nothing wrong with treating yourself every once in a while.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by bengal22 » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:17 pm

I don't need any data to answer this question. If this trip is really something that you have been dreaming about since the 2nd grade and you already have the discipline to save regularly and a lot ..... TAKE THE TRIP. Life is about relationships and experiences not so much about adhering to a financial plan. TAKE THE TRIP and report back on how great it was.
"Earn All You Can; Give All You Can; Save All You Can." .... John Wesley

MathWizard
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by MathWizard » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:26 pm

You are 23, but with no debt.
I am going to make some assumptions here, if these are wrong, ignore my advice.

1) You went to college, and are one or two years out of school.
2) You have no debt because your parents paid for any expenses above scholarships.
3) Though you have saved 33% of your salary, the total accumulation will be small because you have not been out long.

Now your mother assumes you'll max out the 401K.

Consider whether she said that
because she assumed that is what you would do since you've always been a saver, or
because she thought that is what you should do in your best interests.

You will never have anyone who will care for you more than your parents or your own family,
so I would consider their opinions as very important, especially over those of stangers who have
only a little bit of information.

Yes, you could get hit by a bus tomorrow, and it's your money, so do whatever you want
with it, but if it were me, I would bank the money.
Last edited by MathWizard on Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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peregrine
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by peregrine » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:37 pm

Your decision to use your splurge money for a trip is a good one. Experiences tend to bring more satisfaction than things. You have not said anything about the nature of the trip but I think that is important. Is there something about this trip which would make doing it now and not later advantageous? If you want to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro you are better off doing it while you are young. If you want to go to some place in the world which has the potential of becoming dangerous but is not now dangerous maybe you should do it now. On the other hand if you want to go to western Europe and see famous works of art, odds are they will still be there to see in 10 years. Spend all your splurge money now only if there is a reasonable chance you will not be able to do this in the future. Otherwise spend some and save some.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by ssquared87 » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:45 pm

Take the trip, spend within your means, but don't be cheap. When I was your age, I was in a similar position and went on a trip to Italy. I tried to save by eating cheap meals, etc, but had I just let things go and not worried about costs I would have enjoyed the vacation more and probably not spent more than 4 or 500 extra.

Enjoy your trip and don't agonize over the cost. Don't spend 5K on luxury hotels etc, but don't go to Italy and eat sandwiches and drink water for every meal either. Experience the sights, cuisine, music etc of the area...its the whole point of going
Last edited by ssquared87 on Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mmmodem
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by mmmodem » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:46 pm

If I've maxed out my 401k and my Roth IRA and have no debt. That's when I can spend the money without guilt. You'll never recover tax advantaged space again. It's use it or lose it. If something were to happen and I no longer had steady income, bills will still need to be paid. It was difficult and painful but I managed it fresh out of college at $50k a year. I drove my college clunker and lived with the parents.

Obviously, this is my opinion but that is the only way I can spend money guilt free.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Moranall » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:55 pm

I don't think you should be guilted for trying to enjoy your life. The BH philosophy is sound but it has wiggle room. Why should you only enjoy life after you've retired?

Take the trip. A trip like this will become harder and harder as you get older, get married, and/or have kids. Yes, you'll spend some money instead of saving it, but your habits are strong and the risk here is small.

The BH way won't work if you can't enjoy your life today. An experience like this will last you a lifetime.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by mlipps » Thu Aug 01, 2013 2:20 pm

Why don't you try to find creative ways to pay for the trip? Have you ever gotten any credit cards for the sign up bonus? You can very easily cover the flight with one or two of those (United Explorer & Chase Sapphire Preferred for example). Barclays Arrival is $400 to spend on travel, use that for your hotels. If you do that you could save $1500+ on your trip easily. I agree with other posters that at this point it's fine to take the trip, but maybe you can stretch a little to make it less expensive than you initially thought.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by MoonOrb » Thu Aug 01, 2013 2:24 pm

Take the trip.

Also, I am sorry to hear you're experiencing feelings of guilt, but your mother sounds awesome.

The question you asked gets at the heart of the matter for so many investors: how much delayed gratification is necessary to achieve financial security?

You were on track to achieve your financial goals before you got the bonus, right? So you'll be on track to achieve them whether you spend the bonus on a dreamed about trip or whether you invest it.

Concepts that help me when I think about spending are mindfulness and purpose. Spending money on experiences that are meaningful is a mindful, purposeful way to spend money. Travel falls into this category for me--as do physical fitness and health and education. So these items make up a larger proportion of my discretionary spending than they might make for other folks, since they're things I especially value and enjoy.

It's appropriate to be concerned about whether you'll form bad habits of consuming rather than investing--this is the other side of the coin of mindfulness. If spending your bonus would actually compromise your financial security, the mindful choice would be to forego the trip and keep your commitment to yourself to work toward a secure financial future.

Anyway, that was a lot of words, but the bottom line is that you seem to have a good head on your shoulders, you are likely to achieve financial security no matter what you do on this bonus, and the memory of the trip will last you a lifetime. So go.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by AustenNut » Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:02 pm

In light of your age, savings rate, and 6-month emergency fund, I'm in the "take the trip" camp. But perhaps there's room for compromise? My husband and I recently returned from a trip to Africa. We are not in high-income fields, so we had to save for several years to pay for it. Yet we were also able to help defray the costs by using some of our credit card rewards. Travel credit cards often offer large sign-up bonuses, and that's how we ended up paying for our airfare. Or if you use a credit card that does cash back, then use some of that money toward other travel costs. So then you can save some of your bonus while still going on this trip you've been dreaming about since the second grade.

Because even though we're in our early to mid thirties, this was a trip I'm so glad we did now. There were aspects of the voyage that I know I'm more tolerant about now than I would be if I was older. There were still some things we did where I was thinking that I was almost too old for wanting to do them that way. Even though we didn't climb Kilimanjaro, dealing with the rough roads of the national parks on safari, the squat toilets at the campsites, the jostling and limited space on public buses...those are things that I'm glad I did at my age and not in thirty years when we're (hopefully) retired. My $0.02.

P.S. The usual caveat about using credit cards applies...only use them if you pay it off in fully every month and only spend within your means.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by rixer » Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:44 pm

You're already doing the right thing by saving a third of your pay. That's outstanding!

We don't know what the future holds and we have to live life along the way. Go on your vacation, have a great time and don't feel guilty is my advice.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by KyleAAA » Thu Aug 01, 2013 4:01 pm

Not even a question: take the trip.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by vveat » Thu Aug 01, 2013 6:46 pm

Go for the trip. Now is the time to build experience, not just a nest egg. I've seen quite a few examples of gratification that has been delayed too long, and plans fell through due to external circumstances.

10 years ago I finished grad school with $120K in debt. I had a job lined up starting 3 months later, and I used the time until then to travel, maxing all credit cards in the process (so much so that I had difficulty getting approved for a car loan just before I started work). A bit of a risky move and definitely not the boggle way, but I knew that (1) the job I was starting had a very good salary and high potential for earnings increase; (2) it was going to require 60+ hours weekly and vacations would be relatively short; (3) by the time workload eased up we were planning to start a family. I ended up richer for the travel experience, dug myself out of the debt hole within a few years and indeed I never had that long a period ever since to spend travelling - either work or kids or other family obligations always got in the way.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by jackholloway » Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:42 pm

I would take the trip, given that you are saving 20k a year (33% of salary...).

I might consider setting aside a fraction, like perhaps 33%, of the bonus as saved money too. If that leaves too little for the trip as originally imagined, get creative. Examine the constraints that make the trip expensive, then decide which ones you are willing to bend on. It may be that you can do both.

I took a trip to Europe, and had a hired car and driver for our group of five for ten days. It was fantastic, and I could not have afforded it a decade ago. I am glad I did it, but I am also glad I did not do that when I went on my honeymoon. The honeymoon required faxing to Italy with ill-translated reservations, missed connections, and all sorts of scrimping to make it work, and it was incredibly memorable, but different. Different approaches for different times of life.

novatrixs
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by novatrixs » Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:48 pm

Thank you everyone so much for your responses! Everyone had very good points, and it was nice to hear from both sides of the issue, but with due consideration I think I'm going to go on the trip :D .

While I don't like to disappoint her, and my mother is right to emphasize the importance of saving, I think I'm comfortable with the amount I'm currently saving and would rather do something I would enjoy with the money than the more responsible one of saving it.
mhc wrote:After looking at the details, take the trip. It has been your dream for a long time. Go for it.
Do you mind sharing the details about the trip?
The dream trip involves going to Costa Rica and seeing a mixture of popular tourist areas like Arenal for the activites and an off the beaten track remote location in the rainforest for the diverse wildlife. Since the trip would involve a lot of hiking, kayaking and other strenous activities, and the costa rican rainforests are undergoing deforestation, I found peregrine's comment insightful as I'm not sure whether a decade from now I would be able to enjoy the same expereinces on a trip there.

Now if I get to see an ocelot on this trip it will be perfect. 8-)

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mhc
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by mhc » Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:39 am

Thanks for sharing. Sounds like a lot of fun. Enjoy your trip.

BuckyBadger
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by BuckyBadger » Fri Aug 02, 2013 10:00 am

novatrixs wrote:Now if I get to see an ocelot on this trip it will be perfect. 8-)
Archer fan?

(Ignore my comment if it doesn't make any sense to you - it's a rather random TV trivia type comment!)



By the way, I agree that you should go and enjoy the trip. Take lots of photos!!

Caduceus
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Caduceus » Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:33 pm

Wow, that's wonderful! Safe travels - maybe you can post back on this thread and tell us all about your experience when you get back :)

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wander
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by wander » Sat Aug 03, 2013 11:53 am

They key is "balance" between saving and spend. I too think you should take the trip. Saving is a long process, as long you don't take the trip every few months, you will do just fine.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by M_to_the_G » Sat Aug 03, 2013 12:41 pm

30% of $60,000 is $20,000. Is that what you will be saving for the year in your 401(k) and Roth? Make sure the arithmetic is right (which should be easy...). If so, then the trip is deserved, and you should not feel guilty, at all. For your age, "10% of salary" is the recommended savings goal amount I hear about a lot, and you've likely already blown that out of the water, year to date. Enjoy every minute of the trip and know that you earned it.
"It’s basically the plot of 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.' If you stick around, doing nothing, while everyone around you ****s up, you’re going to win big." - John Oliver

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by leonard » Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:10 pm

At 23 - you have plenty of time to take dream trips - after you have achieved your financial dreams first.

Max out your 401k. Max out your (Probably) Roth IRA.

Don't. DON'T buy cars on credit any longer. Paying for $14k of car for 5 years doesn't make any sense. Pay cash in the future for your transportation. Like you would any other tool.

BTW - you don't spend percentages at retirement. So, the actual dollar amount of savings rate - not just the 33% of income - is what makes a difference. If at 33% you are not maxing out tax advantaged accounts and you could still add more - do it. Savings rate is a guideline - it's the actual dollars that are spent.
Leonard | | Market Timing: Do you seriously think you can predict the future? What else do the voices tell you? | | If employees weren't taking jobs with bad 401k's, bad 401k's wouldn't exist.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by boomergeneration » Sat Aug 03, 2013 8:13 pm

I would definitely take the trip. You must be doing a great job at work to get the bonus. Reward yourself. You'll be creating memories that will last your lifetime. And get your mom a nice souvenir.

bg

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Default User BR » Sun Aug 04, 2013 11:23 am

leonard wrote:Don't. DON'T buy cars on credit any longer. Paying for $14k of car for 5 years doesn't make any sense. Pay cash in the future for your transportation. Like you would any other tool.
I disagree with that. The low interest rates these days are very attractive. He's paying 1.49%. You can often get better than that in stable-value funds. However, I'd take the cheap leverage and invest it to plan.

Money is fungible. There's no difference in money spent for transportation than for any other purpose.


Brian

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Userdc » Sun Aug 04, 2013 11:44 am

Default User BR wrote:
leonard wrote:Don't. DON'T buy cars on credit any longer. Paying for $14k of car for 5 years doesn't make any sense. Pay cash in the future for your transportation. Like you would any other tool.
I disagree with that. The low interest rates these days are very attractive. He's paying 1.49%. You can often get better than that in stable-value funds. However, I'd take the cheap leverage and invest it to plan.

Money is fungible. There's no difference in money spent for transportation than for any other purpose.


Brian
I agree with this. I just bought a car on credit this week (0.9% for 60 months) even though I have many times the cost of the car in liquid assets.

It seems like there is a significant number of bogleheads that take a very hard line against any kind of debt. It's clear that approach works for many people, but there are many of us who think DEBT is a tool that can be valuable if used appropriately.

I may end up paying off my loan early, but for now, it's cheap liquidity.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by leonard » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:33 pm

Default User BR wrote:
leonard wrote:Don't. DON'T buy cars on credit any longer. Paying for $14k of car for 5 years doesn't make any sense. Pay cash in the future for your transportation. Like you would any other tool.
I disagree with that. The low interest rates these days are very attractive. He's paying 1.49%. You can often get better than that in stable-value funds. However, I'd take the cheap leverage and invest it to plan.

Money is fungible. There's no difference in money spent for transportation than for any other purpose.


Brian
Money is fungible - but assets are not. In this case, the financing is specific to an asset - it is not a general obligation.

If one goes in default - they do not repossess a pro rate portion of your house, car, boat, cash, etc. So, in this case, the fungibility of money does not fully describe this situation.

In addition to the loan and interest - it is also simply not worth the headache of obtaining, servicing, and ultimately insuring the proper transfer of title at the end of the process.

Not worth the headache. Period. Keep things simple.
Leonard | | Market Timing: Do you seriously think you can predict the future? What else do the voices tell you? | | If employees weren't taking jobs with bad 401k's, bad 401k's wouldn't exist.

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Watty
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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Watty » Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:20 pm

novatrixs wrote: The dream trip involves going to Costa Rica and seeing a mixture of popular tourist areas like Arenal for the activites and an off the beaten track remote location in the rainforest for the diverse wildlife. Since the trip would involve a lot of hiking, kayaking and other strenous activities, and the costa rican rainforests are undergoing deforestation, I found peregrine's comment insightful as I'm not sure whether a decade from now I would be able to enjoy the same expereinces on a trip there.

Now if I get to see an ocelot on this trip it will be perfect. 8-)
I was there this spring and had a good time but I was more into beaches than strenuous activities. :beer Do be careful with sea Kayacks though, I got into some trouble and and was luckey to get back to shore.

A trip like that can easy be done for a very reasonable amount of money without staying in flop houses. It isn't like you would be paying for a $50K safari in Africa or something like that. Go for it.

For the future, one thing that I have done to budget my money for things like travel is that I have had a small amount of each paycheck automatically deposited from my paycheck into my travel account and when I have enough I spend it guilt free. You might start having a couple percent (3% ?? ) of your pay automatically deposited into an account like this so that you can easily take a nice trip like this every few years.

I also allocate my vacation pay to my vacation. By this I mean that if I take home $800 a week and $300 of it goes for paying fixed expenses like rent, utilities, etc. Then I have $500 left over to spend on my vacation, a lot of people forget about this when they are setting up their travel budget.

Another advantage of doing trips like this now is that in ten years you might be married with kids and then taking vacations becomes much more expensive and harder to do. By the time the kids are in school you will be limited to taking vacations in the summer when most destinations are the most expensive and the most crowded.

Keep dreaming !

How about seeing Alaska backpacking using their ferry system next (I did that in my 20's), or the Greek Islands where you can get a nice mid-range hotel room on the less well known islands for around $60 in the shoulder season (that trip was a couple of years ago, before their problems). Or staying in the very good hostels in Ireland(that was with my wife and teen age son).

If you go in the less popular shoulder seasons the weather usually still very good and there are a lot of places that you can go to very reasonably. One of the great things about much of Europe, outside the big cities, is that there are lots of very affordable small hotels and hostels. Except for airfare I can usually travel in Southern Europe in the shoulder season for less than I could in Florida if I am careful.

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by DVMResident » Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:35 pm

23 years old with no kids, saving $20k a year plus match, and a small amount of low interest debt --> No brainier:

Take the trip and bring a good camera! :beer

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Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by Default User BR » Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:37 pm

leonard wrote:Money is fungible - but assets are not. In this case, the financing is specific to an asset - it is not a general obligation.

If one goes in default - they do not repossess a pro rate portion of your house, car, boat, cash, etc. So, in this case, the fungibility of money does not fully describe this situation.
I don't understand the point. Default didn't enter into it. What debt do you want to default on?
leonard wrote:In addition to the loan and interest - it is also simply not worth the headache of obtaining, servicing, and ultimately insuring the proper transfer of title at the end of the process.
Now that's a stretch. I've never had a "headache" doing any of that. Besides, what does that have to do with depreciating assets?


Brian

leonard
Posts: 5993
Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2007 11:56 am

Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by leonard » Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:58 pm

Default User BR wrote:
leonard wrote:Money is fungible - but assets are not. In this case, the financing is specific to an asset - it is not a general obligation.

If one goes in default - they do not repossess a pro rate portion of your house, car, boat, cash, etc. So, in this case, the fungibility of money does not fully describe this situation.
I don't understand the point. Default didn't enter into it. What debt do you want to default on?
leonard wrote:In addition to the loan and interest - it is also simply not worth the headache of obtaining, servicing, and ultimately insuring the proper transfer of title at the end of the process.
Now that's a stretch. I've never had a "headache" doing any of that. Besides, what does that have to do with depreciating assets?


Brian

I have. but, if the trade off is worth it to you - enjoy.
Leonard | | Market Timing: Do you seriously think you can predict the future? What else do the voices tell you? | | If employees weren't taking jobs with bad 401k's, bad 401k's wouldn't exist.

dickenjb
Posts: 2941
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:11 pm
Location: Philadelphia PA

Re: Am I saving enough that I can spend some of it?

Post by dickenjb » Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:22 pm

novatrixs wrote:The dream trip involves going to Costa Rica and seeing a mixture of popular tourist areas like Arenal for the activites and an off the beaten track remote location in the rainforest for the diverse wildlife. Since the trip would involve a lot of hiking, kayaking and other strenous activities, and the costa rican rainforests are undergoing deforestation, I found peregrine's comment insightful as I'm not sure whether a decade from now I would be able to enjoy the same expereinces on a trip there.

Now if I get to see an ocelot on this trip it will be perfect. 8-)
Just got back from Costa Rica. Check out El Remanso lodge in the Osa Peninsula. We had a fabulous stay there. They have some pretty good deals during the "green" season (green is their euphemism for rainy).

http://www.elremanso.com/

We went to Poas Volcano as it was closer to SJO. Arenal is much bigger I believe but we enjoyed our day trip to Poas.

We saw so much wildlife - spider, squirrel, white faced capuchin and howler monkeys. Toucans, scarlet macaws, dozens of other birds. A big boa constrictor and half a dozen fer de lances (venomous snakes). A tarantula. The Osa is the most remote and unspoiled part of CR. Truly an amazing place.

PS I also think you should take the trip. Read up on Liz Weston's "50/30/20" budget. I think it is a good plan, as it forces you to commit 50% to fixed living expenses, 20% to savings, and enjoy 30%. Too many people around this site don't do the enjoy part.

http://money.msn.com/how-to-budget/how- ... -on-weston

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