Get on the Same Financial Page as Your Partner

How do you handle it when you are on a different page—financially speaking—than your partner? I see so many clients who are in various phases of getting aligned with their financial relationship. When you are in a partnership where you are on different phases, don’t freak out! I walk through how to talk to your partner about this so you can be #couplegoals. Watch above, or scan through the bullet points below.

  • Own your own money story and remember that money is often emotionally charged

  • Make sure you are on a team—collaborate and agree on goals as a couple. Many couples find having separate or multiple savings accounts helps them visualize their progress towards their financial goals

  • Carve out time for a money date

  • Think long-term. What happens if you don’t make any changes to your finances? What financial goals do you have within the next five years?

Saving Money when Traveling as a Couple

I love traveling as a part of a couple and encourage all of my financial therapy clients to take trips together to create memories, build security, and deepen a couple’s connection. In this video, I’m going to walk you through the ways that you can save money when you travel with your partner.

  1. Lodging. No matter how you look at it, your dollar is going to go farther when you have two people. Let’s say you had a budget of $100 per night for a hotel, and once you add another person to that, it’s more like $50 per night. The other way to look at it if you want to bump up your travel experience is if you are still willing to pay $100 per night, your partner can throw in $100 and now you have doubled your hotel budget!

  2. Double those credit card rewards. The nice thing is when you travel with a partner is that you both get to earn credit card rewards. With most rewards cards, you can share miles with a spouse. Maybe you have 15k hotel points while your partner has 5k points and a free night costs 20k points. Rather than waiting to reach the 20k mark, you can combine those points to get to your free night quicker.

  3. Sharing meals. This is especially true if you are traveling in North America where meals tend to be larger. So when you head to dinner, just ask for a second plate and then you can share that meal . Then you also have room for dessert, which is always a bonus.

  4. Use cash-back sites like Ibotta or Ebates. Each of them are essentially online coupon sites but you don’t have to worry about keeping track of codes. You install the app or the add-on to your browser and you automatically get between 1 and 10% cash back. Ebates is a little better at online merchants and Ibotta is better at brick-and-mortar stores. If you are going to be buying things anyway for your trip, you might as well get some cash back.

  5. Travel in shoulder season. Shoulder season is a fancy way to say off-peak season travel. If you are traveling as a couple, it means you don’t have to contend with kids which means you can save money by traveling outside of the times that many people are taking their vacations. For example, instead of traveling around spring break, you can travel a little before or after that time period. Why? Because those airlines and hotels are still looking for customers. They tend to drop those prices to entice more people to travel at off-peak times. So if you are traveling as a couple, be sure to travel NOT around the holidays and you are likely to save money.

  6. Share a bag. If you are flying. Most airlines are going to charge you anywhere from $25-50 for a bag, so if you can cram it all into one suitcase you’re in good shape. I know that sounds a little bit crazy, but if you know me, you know I love my travel packing cubes. They are essentially like vacuum seal bags without dealing with the hassle of the vacuum. If you have travel cubes, you can stuff them full, zip them up, and throw them all in one person’s bag. The problem is that that bag will probably be heavier, but you still only have one bag.

  7. If you are traveling internationally do some shopping at duty-free before you come home. Duty-free is more than just booze; they often have perfume, makeup, clothes, different local food items, etc. So you can get your shopping done on the cheap. That doesn’t have a ton to do with couple travel, except that you can double the amount you can bring home.

Those are some of my best tips for saving money when traveling as a couple. What did I miss?