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Family Matters

Missed March Break travel? Save Now to Enjoy a Family Vacation This Summer

April 10th, 2013

- TD Canada Trust and parenting blog My Organized Chaos help Canadian parents plan affordable family getaways -

- TD affordable family travel Guide available at: -

Travelling with children can add layers of complexity for parents, but funding a family vacation is one of the biggest challenges. How do parents manage? According to a recent TD Canada Trust poll, more than 90% of Canadian parents plan to travel with their family in 2013, but almost half (49%) do not save enough to cover their family travel costs. In fact, 35% save only part of the cost and 14% do not save anything at all, instead using credit to make up the difference.  

“How can you avoid taking on more debt to fund a family vacation? It comes down to saving early and budgeting accurately,” said Stephen Menon, Associate Vice President of Credit Cards at TD Canada Trust. “There are roughly 16 weeks until August and with careful planning, it’s possible to start saving now for a debt-free family vacation this summer.” 

TD Canada Trust Three-Step Summer Vacation Savings Plan

  1. Create a budget

“Planning an affordable family getaway starts with calculating the full cost of your trip and creating a budget,” said Menon. “Include all the costs associated with your trip, from flights and hotels to tips and souvenirs.”

 The poll found that Canadian parents ranked shopping (46%), taxes/fees (39%) and food (38%) as the top unbudgeted costs of a family vacation. As smaller expenses can quickly add up, it’s important to capture these costs early.

  1. Set up an automatic transfer into a high interest savings account

“Most parents may not be able to start now and save enough for a European family tour this summer, but a long weekend away or cabin rental by the lake may be possible,” said Menon. “Be realistic with your budget, and break it down into manageable amounts leading up to your trip.”

Set up an automatic weekly deposit into a savings account to help you save. Depending on your travel plans, here is an example of how much you will need to save each week in order to travel in August:


$600: long weekend away at a   hotel

$1,000: cabin/cottage rental

$2,000: flights for four to   visit family




Save $37.50 each week

Save $62.50 each week

Save $125 each week


“Try to reduce discretionary spending, like eating out or going to the movies, to make it easier to save the right amount each week,” said Menon. “For future vacations, when you have more time to plan, consider automatic monthly deposits into a high interest tax-free savings account to take advantage of compound interest and grow your savings tax-free.”

  1. Use rewards to stretch your dollars further

Menon suggested the right travel rewards credit card can help you get the most from your travel budget by offsetting part of the cost of your trip. “For example, the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card lets you redeem TD Points to cover just about any travel cost, automatically provides travel insurance when you book the full cost of the trip with your Card and offers additional TD Points for booking online through Expedia For TD.” 

Many Canadian parents already take advantage of the benefits their travel rewards credit card offers: 46% redeemed travel rewards in the past year, 39% collect extra rewards prior to travelling and 33% book vacations with their travel rewards credit card to access complimentary insurance. Thirty-eight per cent feel their travel rewards helped them afford travel in the past year.

Plan ahead for budget-friendly family travel 

For future getaways, Tammi Roy, My Organized Chaos parenting and travel blogger, agrees that planning ahead is essential to affordable family vacations.

“Do your research and take advantage of offers that allow children to stay, eat or even fly for free,” said Roy. “Make sure to budget for pre-vacation purchases, travel necessities and daily activities, and look for ways to save. Anticipate everything you might need and bring essentials from home, research meal options and deals ahead of time, and redeem rewards points whenever you can.” 

Roy added that even if travel wasn’t in the March Break forecast this year, there are many budget-friendly activities the whole family can enjoy this spring. “Be a tourist in your own town, attend free festivals and attractions, or picnic at a local park. All it takes is a bit of research and imagination.” 

About the TD Canada Trust Poll

TD Bank Group commissioned Environics Research Group ( to conduct an online custom survey of 1,931 Canadian parents who have children living at home. Responses were collected between January 10 and 25, 2013.

About TD Canada Trust

TD Canada Trust offers personal and business banking to more than 11.5 million customers. We provide a wide range of products and services from chequing and savings accounts, to credit cards, mortgages and business banking, to credit protection and travel medical insurance, as well as advice on managing everyday finances. TD Canada Trust makes banking comfortable with award-winning service and convenience through 24/7 mobile, internet, telephone and ATM banking, as well as in over 1,100 branches, with convenient hours to serve customers better. For more information, please visit: TD Canada Trust is the Canadian retail bank of TD Bank Group, the sixth largest bank in North America.


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