The American Express Guide to a “Summer Well Spent”
Do you find yourself dishing out money left and right all summer? According to the American Express Spending and Savings Tracker, summer looks to be as expensive as the holiday season (if not more!). From pool membership to family vacation and summer camp for the kiddos, your wallet is getting pulled every which way. If fact, Amex estimates parents are spending $958 per child on fun summer activities in 2014–up from $856 last year and $601 in 2012. Overall, American parents will shell out $70 billion or more for summer activities.
“Throughout the year, we’ve seen higher spending in a number of areas, like travel, shopping and entertainment – so it’s no surprise that parents are planning to spend more to keep their kids active. This is good news for seasonal retailers, as well as camps, theme parks and other entertainment venues,” according to David Rabkin, Senior Vice President of Consumer Lending Products at American Express.
Eventually your kids will grow old enough to actually earn money in the summer. Nearly a third of teens are currently skipping the beach to start babysitting (24 percent), work in the fast food service (24 percent), working in a grocery store (20 percent), in retail (11 percent), or landscaping (16 percent). However, 54 percent of those teens will decide to spend their earnings rather than save, unless they are saving for a vehicle (27 percent) and/or college tuition (25 percent).
Meanwhile, with the help of Amex, some of our helpful tips to keep track of your pennies include:
- Planning vacations and summer getaways ahead of time. By doing so, you may find deals along the way. Also, it’s okay to tell the kids up front what your limits are for souvenirs, meals, and more. Never to early to make them realize that money doesn’t grow on trees!
- Make an effort to teach your kids fun and cheap (or free) ways to enjoy the summer heat in your hometown. Lemonade stand anyone?
- Although school is out, chores still remain a popular way to let your child earn money. Nearly 98 percent of parents report assigning summer chores to their kids, such as cleaning a room, taking out trash, caring for a pet, or helping with the dishes, and 83 percent of parents reward the kids with an allowance. Then maybe they can reach into their own wallet the next time they want to go see a movie or chase the ice-cream truck!
- Also, ask your kids early on what they’re interested in doing during the last weeks of summer. Sports clubs, pool memberships and camps are always popular, but limit yourself to what he or she is really excited about. It takes money to participate in a lot of summer activities, but with tips and tricks from American Express, make it a summer well spent!
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