Is it Possible for Families to Get Travel Loans to Take a Sabbatical?
Family travel is finally a real option again, with Travel Weekly featuring a study that showed more parents are planning a trip with their children in 2023. If you’re planning to take a year off to travel with the whole family, then you can expect to spend around $30,000 to $60,000 depending on how frugal or freewheeling you’re going to be. Of course, this number can get higher or lower depending on the location, season, and whether you’re going for luxury travel plans or not.
According to USA Today’s article on traveling post-pandemic, financial experts believe it’s safest to allocate extra money for each family member in case problems arise. Domestically, that would be around $300 per person at the least.
Of course, you may want to take out a travel loan to get this family sabbatical on the road. It is possible to use this route, but there are a few more considerations you need to make if you want to turn it into a reality.
What You Need to Budget For
You must first pin down your budget and figure out how much of it you can shoulder with existing funds. Food and accommodations will be essential, but it’s worth noting that more than a fourth of your budget will likely go to transport. Statistically, a little over 40 percent of a family travel budget gets poured into getting to, from, and around their destination.
On top of that, you should also invest in travel insurance. This will end up helping you against unexpected expenses from injury to lost items, especially if you’re going on an extended trip.
You may want to use some of our ‘30 Tips for Traveling on a Budget’ to help you along your way. Simple changes like picking cheaper locations, cooking your own meals, traveling off-season, seeking out free activities, and buying public transport passes can do wonders in making your sabbatical more sustainable. Once you’ve figured out the budget, you can start the process of seeking out a travel loan.
Loan Applications and Approval
A travel loan is basically a personal loan specifically designed for travel expenses. This means you can expect an application process and a credit check to get one. Upgraded Points’ post on hard vs. soft credit checks outlines that lenders will perform hard credit checks to survey your ability to pay your bills and debts on time, as well as assess your financial habits and history. With this in mind, you’ll want a family member with a good income, solid credit score, and clean credit history to lead the application.
A hard inquiry will dock a couple of points from your score, so make sure you are prepared for that. Avoid making too many applications at once. You’ll also want to be ready with your travel plans and own records to make your case. From there, you need to map out how you’ll be paying your loan back and the duration of your repayment.
Finally, you also need to think about recurring bills and responsibilities at home. You need to address how you plan to deal with these accounts and lines of credit if you’re going to not only get your loan but also successfully go through your sabbatical.
Bills and Responsibilities to Rearrange
Before you even get approved for your loan, it’s best for you to already be ironing out how you would approach the bills and responsibilities that are tied to your home. This also has the potential to impact your loan approval and credit standing, so don’t leave it at the last minute.
For starters, make sure any working members of the family actually have their employer’s consent to take this sabbatical. If they are going to be working remotely, make sure they still have the means to secure their income.
While older children can either take on work or make use of youth gap year programs, you need to make different adjustments for younger school-age kids. Can you time your trip to end just before the school year? If not, you will have to arrange an agreement with your school district to ensure that your children’s education is legally in your hands. From there, you can register for homeschooling and the like.
With younger children, one of the best ‘Tips for Traveling Long-Distance with Kids’ is allocating space for rest. Tired kids can be moody balls of anxiety, so you’ll need to make that consideration as well.
Finally, you need to think about any accounts that you must temporarily put on hold or even cancel altogether. You don’t want to have to pay for utilities, subscriptions, and services that will not be used for an extended period anyway. You need to make official arrangements with each provider so that it doesn’t seem like you’re just refusing to pay your bills.