How to Return from Holiday Without Debt         

Have a budget-friendly holiday

OK, let me set the scene. You’ve arrived home from your holiday in Malaga, Spain with your suitcase brimming with gifts. You have hot sauces and coffees for your brother. You have a couple of bottles of Port for your sister. You’ve got some neat artwork for your parents.

But what about yourself? What did you bring home for you?

Debt. Crippling debt from overspending on your holiday. What a bummer.

You can take steps to avoid that debt that you’ve burdened yourself with, and not compromise on your holiday in Costa Brava. Here are some tips to avoid that nasty surprise gift of debt after your wonderful holiday.

Travel during the Off-Season

The peak season for Spain is in August. Most Europeans get a summer break and they all love to flock to the coasts of Spain to indulge themselves in some sun and sand. No wonder, because the coasts are blessed with incredible sights and over 300 sunny days each year. It’s no wonder that it gets popular.

You’ll have a hard time trying to stick to a budget if you travel during that time, so look for other times during the year. The spring season is lower in tourist numbers and you can still enjoy mild to warm weather, fun activities and unique experiences. The Santa Semana is held all over Spain during the Easter holidays. You can partake in the activities and get a great deal on your flights and accommodation while you’re there.

And speaking of accommodation…

Stay in Private Villas

Imagine staying here in your own private villa

Most people assume that staying in private villa is for the rich and luxurious lifestyle. Not so. You can get some great deals, staying in a private villa that gives you a better experience than a hotel any day. You get to indulge in a spacious rooms, live like a local, and experience a side of Spanish culture that you wouldn’t get in a hotel chain.

If you’re travelling with anybody else, you can all stay together without it costing an arm and a leg. It’s surprising how few tourists take up the opportunity to try something new by staying in a private villa of their own. You can pack your whole family in, have a private swimming pool, and even a kitchen to cook your food.

Eat Only Locally

Let’s talk about food. If you spend every night eating out and finding a new restaurant and café, your holiday credit card bill will skyrocket. Keep your costs low by making some alternative decisions about where to eat.

If you eat like a local, you’ll find it’s much more affordable to feed yourself, and it could be even more flavourful too. What does it mean to eat locally?

If you shop and cook in your private villa, you can save tremendously by preparing some simple meals at home. Buy some local, fresh ingredients and you can whip up a paella or a gazpacho for less than it would cost to grab a bite at the café down the road.

If you eat locally, you stay away from the touristy areas where the prices tend to be higher. It’s much easier to save if you find out where the locals like to eat and try there. It may be smaller and less well-known, but you can save some bucks and continue to immerse yourself in the culture.

Be Your Own Guide

Touring Malaga

Tours are the most common way to get to know an area, but that doesn’t mean you have to pay for one. Even if you participate in a tour group, you can easily shell out hundreds of dollars over the course of your trip. Save that cash and be your own guide.

There are plenty of sites and articles that advise you to use tour guides to get more information, or a private guide to get a tailored experience. But to save money and avoid debt when you get home, you can do most of the research yourself.

The night before, spend some time on Google and find out what you can about the places you will visit. Learn about the history, find out some interesting stories, and even read about other tourists’ experiences on their blogs. These days, there is almost too much information to be found online.

You won’t have a guided tour, but you will have the cash to spend on more important things.

Plan your Days

If you walk around aimlessly on your holiday, you’re likely going to be drawn into the trap of spending money on whatever you come across. Ride the local tram for a tour? Sure. Walk through this museum just because it’s there? Why not?

If you plan out your events, you save money by only spending on the things you actually want to do. You’ll know ahead of time what your budget must be, how long the events will take, and exactly what they will cost you. You might even learn what to avoid. You’ll resist that “impulse shopping” experience that many tourists fall prey to. Just because something is there doesn’t mean that you have to do it or pay for it. But for some people, they don’t realise this until that credit card bill catches up with them at home.


You should absolutely bring something home for yourself when you return. Bring back memories, pictures, little reminders of where you’ve been and what you did, but avoid the hanging debt that can follow you around for months. That kind of reminder will discourage you from going on holiday again. Follow these simple tips to have a good experience and avoid the debt coming home with you at all.