The kids are out of school, teachers are on a break, and you can finally plan set out on that vacation you’ve been planning for months. Within the past few years, however, American household debt has grown substantially, and many now owe more than $135,000 to lenders because of credit cards, loans, and mortgages.

With so many people owing more and more money, it is crucial to get some of the nation’s best debt advice and learn how avoiding debt can create a better summer — and future — for everyone in your home. Here is some advice from our most trusted debt relief specialists at Liberty Debt Relief that can help you have a great time in the sun this year.

Debt Advice for a Brighter Summer

Have a Summer Budget

Knowing how to avoid debt starts with knowing how to properly budget. For many people, the summer can be the “off-season” for work. Many offices close during this time and expenses, in general, tend to increase with having to run the air conditioner, finding daily caretakers for kids who are out of school, and all the exciting activities.

Those extra costs and less work can take a huge toll on people if they are not prepared, which is why it is crucial to have a summer budget planned well ahead of time. When creating your budget, make sure to include the income you will be making during the summer, anticipate changes in any utility bills, and focus on finding activities that you and your family can do that fit into the budget without taking money out of your savings account or charging it all to credit cards that you’ll have to pay back eventually.

Plan for Vacations in Advance

One of the best pieces of debt advice you will ever receive is to plan vacations months in advance and not rely on spur of the moment trips. Whether it is a weekend getaway or two weeks on a remote island beach, vacations eat up a lot of money from transportation, food, and activities. By planning it in advance, you allow yourself more time to save up money that can be used specifically for the occasion so that you do not end up having to put it all on credit cards and go into even more debt.

We recommend you start planning at least five or six months in advance. This will give you plenty of time to find an itinerary that is affordable and reliable that you can work to pay off before summer. It may secure you better vacation deals as well, as many hotels, theme parks, and other outdoor adventure places offer early discounts.

Find Low-Cost Activities You and Your Family Will Enjoy

Similarly, activities and vacations themselves do not have to be a several thousand dollar investment. There are plenty of ways to celebrate summer that do not include putting three months of fun on credit cards or borrowed money. For those who like to stay at home, consider planning days at a local beach, going to parks or nature trails, planning a picnic, or maybe starting weekend bike rides with the whole family.

If you still want to go on vacation, check discount sites for any activities you and the family are interested in. There are usually plenty of offers to take off a few bucks from popular activities that your wallet will greatly appreciate later. You can also consider AirBnBs or camping out so you do not spend a lot of money on hotel rooms.

Never Put it All on Credit Cards

To make sure you know how to avoid debt, it is crucial you understand the pros and cons of credit cards and how they can be one of the most dangerous defaults on summer vacation. When on vacation or simply out and about with friends, it is always super easy to forget about any fiscal responsibility and just start charging away on one or two credit cards. Many people assume that, because they do not usually use their cards t or always pay off their balances, the move will be okay, but often, people make one expensive purchase too many and realize later on that they can’t actually afford the expense.

The best way to avoid this is to not spend any more than you actually have. For some people, the best way to do this is to simply use cash and leave the credit card at home. This will make sure that you can really keep track of how much you have available to spend and do not go over budget, purposely or accidentally. Others may do something similar but with their debit card, which is also fine, but your should treat this with extra care because your could easily spend over the amount you have available.

Think Beyond Summer Vacation

As beautiful and relaxing as summer is, the truth is that it is not the only time of year to travel or plan vacations. One of our favorite debt advice tips is to consider planning trips and expensive outings during other times of the year. During the fall, winter, and spring, trip deals seem to be substantially lower, which allows you more time and money to enjoy the most perfect vacation. Additionally, you’ll be able to enjoy the unique climates of the places you visit, which is especially exciting if you never get snow or changing leaves where you live.

Talk it out with a Trusted Professional

At Liberty Debt Relief, our debt relief consultants work hard to make sure that you not only have the best fiscal summer, but the best financial life imaginable. Contact us today to learn more about what options you have available and how we can help you and your family today.