How to Plan a Summer Vacation you Can Afford

summer vacation

With summer quickly approaching, most of us are itching to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, even if just for a few days. However, those of us who are deep in the heart of credit repair might feel the strain on our financial resources if we jet off to Cancun for five days.

However, this does not mean you cannot afford to take a vacation this summer. You just have to be smart about how you plan it, and where you go. Here are some ways to plan an affordable summer vacation that will not leave you penniless.

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Chicagoans are Racking Up Credit Card Debt — And the Reason Why May Surprise You

Chicago credit

All too often, incurring debt seems to be a necessary evil of getting by in life. And in the city of Chicago, these residents are no exception as they continue to grow their debt balances year over year. Half of respondents to a recent survey conducted by Lexington Law found that the majority of resident’s debt — 54.6 percent — comes from credit cards. Not surprising considering that the average Chicagoan carries a personal credit card balance of $6,649.

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Student Loan Debt Statistics for 2018

student-loan-debt-stats

Over 44 million Americans have student loans on file, adding up to a staggering $1.52 trillion in May of 2018. The class of 2017 walked off the podium with an average debt of $39,400 and that number is expected to rise above $40,000 for the graduating class of 2018. The US Census reported in 2015 that 33% of Americans held a bachelor’s degree or higher which raised five percentage points from the reported 28% of Americans that held a degree a decade before.

Many cite the growth in Americans pursuing higher education to the job market. A study conducted by Forbes surveying over 26 million job postings found that 67% of jobs required a bachelor’s degree or higher.

The burden of student loans is poised to have lasting effects on graduates as home ownership among Americans under the age of 35 is down and the expected retirement age is rising. With college tuition on the incline it is important for graduates and potential student loan borrowers to practice strategic financial planning in order to plan for future investments.

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Lesser-Known Credit Card Benefits

credit card benefits

Although credit cards sometimes get a bad rap from the debt that can accumulate with misuse, responsibly used credit cards can offer a wealth of useful and valuable benefits to their cardholders.

For example, the cash back rewards that some cards offer can equate to a savings of 5% or more on many popular purchase categories — and that’s not to mention the signup bonuses. And if you pay your balance in full each month to avoid interest fees, that’s a no-cost savings.

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What Is a Side Hustle and Why Should You Have One?

side hustle

By Alayna Pehrson – Content Management Specialist at BestCompany.com

Would you like a little extra cash in your wallet every month? Do you have a fun, creative hobby you enjoy after your nine to five day job? Are you in need of an exciting, but flexible change in your life? If so, then you might want to look into starting a side hustle.

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