How I Can Save For Travel

I'm not a fan of budgets. But sadly, I'm not a U.S. Congressman, so I keep to a budget both in life, and in travel. 

A few months ago I shared my "Dream big and scale back to reality" approach to budgeting for trips. This week, as part of Bootsnall's 2012 Indie Travel Challenge, we've be given a unique angle on the dreaded B-word... 

Find one major expense you could cut to help save for travel. 

This task proved harder than I originally thought, because for the most part I run a pretty lean financial ship. Outside of my fixed monthly expenses - mortgage, electric, etc - there are not many places that I spend loosely. Sure, we dine out or order in a few nights a week, but aside from that, travel is about the only place I spend money. Or so I thought....

One of these things is very expensive, is deeply intertwined in my daily life, and helps boost my efficiency at work a hundred fold. The other is my laptop... 

I am a full fledged junkie. 

It all started back in the mid-90s, when I was the only kid showing up to high school with an iced coffee every morning. Coffee wasn't cool yet in those days, but I like to think I made it cool. OK, we all know that is a huge stretch of the imagination, but humor me will you?

What I didn't realize back then - and still don't like to think about - is the financial impact of my coffee habit. I estimate that I spend between $75 and $100 a month at Starbucks and other establishments, on top of the $25 I spend to keep my Keurig in good supply. That's about $1500 a year for coffee. Multiply that by 15 years and you're starting to talk real money. Money that would bring more long term satisfaction if the end result were travel memories, as opposed to, well...urine.

So what am I going to do about it?

The solution which would have the biggest impact on my coffee expense would be to brew an extra cup at home and bring it to work. Most of my trips to the coffee shop occur on my lunch break, and since I only drink my coffee cold, having an extra cup in the fridge would save about $50-$75 a month. Over a years time, that's a nice weekend getaway. Do I think I can actually pull it off?....

Not in a million years.

~Insert Dude-like Closing Here~