If you’re going on vacation, how do you make sure your bills still get paid on time?
I took three trips in July and one of the best parts about being away these days is feeling like I have complete control over my money no matter where I am in the world.
Whether mushing dogs in Alaska or simply enjoying your family on the beach, here are a few things you can do to help you get your bills paid and better manage your money whether you’re away for a you’re away for a weekend or a month.
First, do you know when your bills are due?
When your statement comes in, check the due date and put it in your calendar. Once you know when you owe money, the next thing to do is set up an automatic payment plan. With most bills, you can arrange to have the funds withdrawn regularly out of your checking account, or you can do it as a one-time payment.
Most banks now offer you the ability to pay your bills online, for free or for about what you’d spend writing and mailing a check. Setting up Epay at your bank, you’ll be able to pay your bills wherever you are in the world.
Another way to make life a little easier while you’re on vacation and during the year is to reduce the number of bills you pay.
You can do this by dumping some of your monthly bills onto your credit card. Basically, you’ll give the phone company and cable company your credit card number and they’ll automatically put the charge on your credit card. But don’t do this if you carry a balance, or you’ll start paying interest on your new bills.
If you know you’re going to be away on vacation during the week you normally pay the bills, consider prepaying them. Just write them and send them ahead of time. If you won’t have enough cash in your account because your paycheck won’t be direct deposited in time, you can post date your check, or write the date on which you want the check to be good, stamp it and then mail it from the road.
Finally, keep track on how things are going from the road. You can take along your bank’s toll free number and check your balance that way, or if you set up your internet access, you can manage your accounts from any internet cafe.
If your checking account seems to be running a bit low, you should be able to transfer money from your savings account by phone so you don’t bounce any checks while you’re enjoying your time off.