Financially Savvy People - Would you go?!?!

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by MinnieMom, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. MinnieMom

    MinnieMom Because everyone needs a little magic in their lif

    Mar 9, 2003
    I need some financially savvy people to give me some advice, please:)

    I am really struggling with whether or not to go to Disney this year. I know it sounds ridiculous (and no one in my real life gets my Disney obsession), but I figured people on the Dis would understand!

    Here's the situation: We were at Disney in April '06 (and every year prior since 2002) and because the economy is pretty shaky right now I told DH I would be good and not plan a trip for this year. Then comes the 40% off discount code from Disney on Monday . . . and, that broke me! I have always wanted to stay at the Wilderness lodge but could never bring myself to spend that much $ on a 'hotel.' At 40% off, I can justify it and I'm afraid if we don't go now, we'll never get a rate like that again.

    The reason I'm not so sure about going is because DH and I are both in the building industry and we all know how that stands right now. Both of our companies have had lay offs recently and I know business is extremely slow . . . my company hasn't seen it like this since the 80's. The thing is though that I am 90% sure we would be one of the last ones let go. I am the only person that does my job and DH is in Sales, but also does IT for his company, both of which I would think they would need to hang onto until the end.

    We have a decent savings ($23,000) and I wouldn't even pull from that to pay for the trip. If we add the dining plan, which I'm not completely set on yet, our trip would cost about $4,400 for everything (air + dining + room + tickets). My airfare will be free because I'm using my frequent flier miles. I generally save about $1,000 a month in addition to what goes in our 401k which is about 28% of our income. So, we do save and are pretty practical when it comes to finances, which is why I'm trying to use my brain to make this decision instead of my heart!!

    I know DS3 would love another trip - his first trip was last year and he keeps asking to go back. DD has been there many times, but would still like to go back.

    Oh, another note. I did rack up a credit card bill, which I said I would never do, but Christmas was tough this year because DH didn't get the bonus we thought he was going to. So, I do havea $5,000 CC bill, but it is on a no interest card until November and I'm sure I can have that and the trip paid off by then with no problem. It would just mean not saving much else!

    I'm sorry this got so long! If you're still reading, what would you do? I know we're not in a bad financial situation in any way, but I don't want a vacation (even a Disney vacation) to adversely affect that, kwim?!?!

    Thanks for any input.
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  3. tbrenk73

    tbrenk73 Mouseketeer

    Aug 24, 2007
    If it were me, if there was a chance theat DH and I could be laid off and I had a $5000 credit bill it would be a no brainer and I wouldn't go. Disney will always be there.+
  4. Bren's Mom

    Bren's Mom DIS Veteran

    Aug 11, 2006
    I agree, it would be a no brainer for me too. Not a smart time to plan a trip. Sorry!
  5. momof3littlelilos

    momof3littlelilos DIS Veteran

    Jul 1, 2005
    I feel your pain. Well, not the full scope of it, I sure hope your worst case scenario doesn't play out as far as layoffs and all. But the missing Disney part because of the bad economy, I'm there with you...
    We were planning to go for Christmas, but with the cost of gas and heat being so high I'm thinking we maybe can't afford it. We just moved back up north from Orlando and we'd told the kids we'd take a nice vacation within a year...but the cost of heat is TWICE what we were paying for central AC in Florida :scared1:

    I'm bummed out. I'm not quit at terms with cancelling our trip, but I think it's the prudent thing to do. I'm sorry, I think maybe that's true for you too. :sad1:
  6. CheshireVal

    CheshireVal Can you stand on your head?<BR><font color="purple

    Dec 9, 2003
    Life is too short.

    I would go.

    Most people on the BB are super duper anti- credit card debt, so I have no doubt that most of your answers will be "no."

    I, personally, don't find a small amount of debt to be a tragic, horrible thing that you should feel ashamed of.

    We all have different philosophies, though!
  7. MinnieMom

    MinnieMom Because everyone needs a little magic in their lif

    Mar 9, 2003
    I guess it sounds crazy, but the CC bill is not that big of a deal to me. Technically I could pay that off now with savings and still have $18k in savings. I am just keeping it on the cc for now because it is interest free, so why take it out of savings where I am earning a decent rate?!?!

    Plus, we will get about $1,500 with our income tax check and I lent a family member $3,000 that we should be getting back pretty soon. And yes, before any debate or flaming starts - I am SURE I will be repaid!

    Oh, and I have a $1,500 check coming in from work soon. It is my tuition reimbursement. Since I have already paid for it, that will just go into savings.
  8. soonerlpn

    soonerlpn Mouseketeer

    Oct 21, 2007
    I agree its good to be financially savvy but with what you have coming in I say go. Life is short as the previous poster said. Enjoy what you have!
  9. dvcgirl

    dvcgirl DIS Veteran

    Nov 1, 2002
    Oh dear God, NO! I would not go!

    You guys are the poster children for people who should be in "hunker down" mode. You work in the building industry. Housing continues to tank. You ran up CC debt at Christmas and we're likely heading into a recession.

    I'd be doing everything in my power to pay down that debt and build up a really solid emergency fund. There would be no way in a million years I'd be going on vacation.
  10. rbork

    rbork DIS Veteran

    Apr 23, 2004
    So...if you wait until just before Nov to pay off that 5000$ cc, what about next christmas bills? Bonus may not be coming then either? I probably would still do some kind of vacation BUT maybe scale back alittle. And definately NOT dip into savings/emergency funds. Disney CAN be done in less than 4 grand a trip (trying- But none the less can be done with the right expectations) I know we live in a here and now world but financial responsibility is hard including many tough choices.
    Good Luck and Do what's Right for you.
  11. grlpwrd

    grlpwrd <font color="orange">I'm here for the mouse more t

    Jul 28, 2000

    Too many red flags so I will vote no.

    No job is absolute, the economy is shaky, you already have debt, and going on a trip now might sink you deeper. If it was a situation where someone was fatally ill then I would say go, but under those situation you describe I say no. Your financial health depends on it and you and your kids will feel a pinch if things go sour.

    I know because I have had to cancel 2 trips in the past 10 years due to my dh's layoffs. Never put passion before principle.

    Disney will always be there. :wizard:
  12. mickeyfan2

    mickeyfan2 DIS Veteran

    May 21, 2004
    If I did my calculation correctly, at the present time you have 24K (23K - 5K + 1.5K + 3K + 1.5K). If on Monday you are laid off how long could you and your family live on that 24K?

    How would you feel if you planned this vacation and then told the kids then got laid off. What would you do? If you went it would reduce that 24K down to 19.6K (even less with spending money). How long would that last you?

    Do you know how much unemployment will pay in your state. Many are surprised at how little it actually is.

    If you get laid off in the spring you could be off for a year at least.

    If it was me I would not even consider it. If you stay employed then plan one for next year.

    ETA: What would you do for health insurance is you both lost your jobs? Many on here have stated that their COBRA payments are $1200/month. If you were off for a full year that would be $14.4K/ That would reduce the 24K/$19.6K down to $9.6K/5.2K plus 6 months of unemployment to live off. Could you do it?

    I hope you don't lose either of your jobs.
  13. Malificient Tater

    Malificient Tater Mouseketeer

    Jul 1, 2007
    the fact that your jobs might be on shaky ground, I would say no. It has nothing to do with credit debt or anything like that. I would just not want to take the risk, but then again you can always plan and not go.
  14. goodcook5

    goodcook5 Mouseketeer

    Oct 11, 2004
    Get a ding fare and stay in a budget hotel. Do not do the dining plan unless you are consuming huge amounts of food.
  15. HeyIt'sMe

    HeyIt'sMe Nothin' to see here folks

    Oct 18, 2006
    It is very dangerous to assume this.

    Discount off the Wilderness Lodge - 40%
    Assumption you and/or your DH won't be laid off - 90%
    Loss of income if you and DH are laid off - 100% (and not priceless!)

    My vote is to not take the trip. Disney World will always be there and when things improve you'll be in a better position to go.

    Good luck to you! :grouphug:
  16. EthansMom

    EthansMom <font color=red>spare yourself from asking me to d

    Jul 13, 2003
    My DH's job is more stable and, given the state of the economy and growing inflation, we've decided against going to WDW this next fall (which we'd tentatively planned).

    Given that you and DH are both in precarious industries right now, I would put off unnecessary large purchases right now.

    WDW isn't going anywhere. When your jobs are more secure and the economy has stabilized, WDW will still be there.
  17. Toby'sFriend

    Toby'sFriend The thing about growing up with Fred and George is

    Jan 9, 2001
    Well first - no. Discount codes happen all the time. Every year Disney sets their rack rates at unreasonable levels and then they discount them.

    Second, I'm fairly conservative financially and I really can't think of a reason for you not to go. If something happens job-wise, you might have to cancel the reservation but nobody can predict the future.

    But as it is
    you are going to pay off the credit card
    pay cash for the vacation, not from your Emergency fund,
    continue to build the emergency fund

    you're funding retirement right?

    If you can do all that, then I really don't see a reason that you shouldn't take a vacation.
  18. tinkarooni

    tinkarooni <font color=teal>Gets way too excited about saving

    Jan 22, 2006
    I can totally relate to you. That being said however IMO you must let the responsible part of you win here. You must have that feeling in the pit of your stomach that you shouldn't go otherwise you wouldn't have asked us. I vote no go. We also are desperate to go again but have put off our trip to December 2009. Sounds horrible doesn't it. But we are going to stay any where we want to and do whatever we want, because by than I will have saved all CASH. :banana:

    If you can't pay for it you shouldn't go. Anything could happen. Trust me, this summer I was injured and couldn't work for 10 weeks. Than pile up on top of that my med bills insurance didn't cover and I was responsible for. You don't think it could happen to you but it can, I am a 36 y/o healthy person. Who knew it could happen to me! Thank goodness we had savings.

    Good Luck with your decision. Let us know.

    Edited to add, I meant to mention that we are doing small trips between now and Disney, but paying cash and much much less expensive, think long weekends to out of the way places. We don't feel deprived and we're not worried about the cost this way!
  19. CheshireVal

    CheshireVal Can you stand on your head?<BR><font color="purple

    Dec 9, 2003

    Sorry, but this is a little melodramatic. I don't see anything so dire in her circumstances. No need to scare her.
  20. bnorm27

    bnorm27 DIS Veteran

    Jun 27, 2006
    Based on your information, I would bypass the trip this year. If you are banking $1k per month, you could have the credit card paid off in 5 months. Then you can begin saving for Christmas, and a trip for next year.

    Chesire, I don't think DVCgirl was trying to scare the OP. Just open the paper each day and you can easily see that this country is in a bit of a jam right now. And the housing/building industry is really getting the brunt of it.

    Good luck with your decision.
  21. aka-mad4themouse

    aka-mad4themouse <font color="blue">Budget Board Co-Host</font>

    Dec 14, 2004
    I'm very conservative when it comes to finances. So consider that when I offer a resounding NO!. The $5K in CC debt from Christmas would be enough to keep me from sleeping at night, regardless of the interest rate. It's still money that is owed and should at least be deducted on paper when you're listing your assets. So really, you have $18K with another $1.5K to be reimbursed to you later.

    Out of that $19.5K, you want to take $4.4K (almost 23% of your savings!) to spend on a vacation that you had no intention of taking prior to getting that code. I know what my gal, Suze Orman, would say: "Girlfriend, you are so denied!"

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