Lockdown has been a difficult time for many people. The cancellation of summer plans, and really any plans for the foreseeable future, and the constant confinement to home is something that no one could have anticipated. While few have been enjoying the conditions created by lockdown rules, there is someone who has very likely felt quite spoiled and content with the situation: your dog.
Extra hours spent with you and never having to say goodbye for the day have probably allowed your dog to enjoy this time more than you have. Even the most independent canines tend to be more relaxed when their owners are at home with them. So, while you make your post-lockdown plans to make up for all the lost time and missed holidays, it wouldn’t be fair to leave your furry friend out of your plans.
Taking a trip that includes your dog would be an excellent way to celebrate the easing of lockdown and the return to some sense of normalcy. Before lockdown, you might have been deterred from travelling with your pup as it can add an extra expense. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do that will help you afford a dog-friendly trip once lockdown is over.
To ensure that you can afford the trip, start by planning ahead. This means looking at flights or train ticket prices, or how long the journey would take by car, and, therefore, how much petrol it would require. You should also consider how much the general expenses for the trip will cost, such as food, entertainment, and accommodation. By having an advanced awareness of how much this will cost, you can better prepare yourself by saving up or working overtime to bring in some extra money. One of the great bonuses for booking so far in advance is that you can usually save money.
Take Out a Short-Term Loan
A short term loan is a great way to help you in those times when you fall just shy of being able to pay certain immediate expenses. As long as you are mindful of repaying the loan as quickly as possible, there is no problem with using one to help increase the budget for your next trip. By using a short-term loan, you won’t have to worry about the added expense of bringing your dog along with you on your trip.
While bringing your dog on a trip can be simple enough in theory, the things that will cost you a bit extra will include an adequately sized kennel, if you don’t already have one, as well as the cost of travel. If you plan to drive, this might only amount to the cost of some comfortable blankets and pillows for that car. However, if you intend to take a plane to your holiday destination, you might need to pay a few hundred pounds.
Take the Train
Since the main expenses associated with bringing your dog along on your post-lockdown trip will have to do with getting your pet from point A to point B, consider more budget-friendly travel options. For instance, while it might cost a few hundred pounds to travel with your dog by plane, you might be able to bypass travel costs altogether by taking the train.
When you travel by train, you might very well be able to bring your dog along without paying any extra. This will depend on where you are going, whether you are travelling by National Rail or another carrier, and how big your dog is. At most, you might have to pay about 10% of the cost of your own ticket to bring your pup along.
Make a Checklist
Although you might question how making a checklist can help you afford a trip with your dog, it actually plays a vital role in being able to do so. This is because a dog requires many stimuli when taking a journey. You need to ensure that they have their:
- Water and food bowl
- Any medication they require
Not being prepared in advance could result in you forgetting these essentials. What this means for you then is forking out more money to buy the necessary items for your dog to have access to his or her basic needs. So, to ensure you don’t spend more money than you need to, make a checklist of everything you need for your dog in advance. As you pack, you can then tick off all the items, ensuring you don’t forget anything.
Top Tip: Don’t just make a checklist for your furry friend. Make sure you do one for you and your family so that you don’t forget any essentials, either.
Consider your accommodation carefully
Finding accommodation that is going to be dog-friendly might be a struggle. The reason why is because you need to not only find a hotel, B&B, or rented private villa, for example, that is dog-friendly, but you need to ensure that they are not taking advantage of you in terms of price. While most hotels won’t charge you any extra for having your dog, there are some that will. Therefore, spend plenty of time shopping around, looking at the policies they have in place surrounding dogs, and consider whether the additional cost is worth the hotel. You might find somewhere better at a lower cost, so never go for the first accommodation you see.
Don’t just consider hotels or holiday homes. If you are really considering how to cut back and afford your trip, why not think about the benefits that a house exchange could bring?
If you are struggling to afford a trip with your dog, due to the extra cost, you should consider the other ways in which you can still enjoy the same trip just at a lower cost. Being more flexible, for example, could mean you can make the most of the same accommodation, flights, or amenities a week or two later for a much lower price. Alternatively, it could mean heading off to a different location that is much cheaper but offers almost exactly the same experience. If you are able to do so, then take advantage of this flexibility. The money you save from being more flexible will enable you to make more memories or even upgrade your travel for both you and your pooch.