In just under two weeks the family and I are headed to the Most Magical Place on Earth. I am thrilled to be taking the kids to DisneyWorld! We have had one family trip to Disney, and while it was SO.MUCH.FUN. I think this trip will be even more fun!
I often see videos where kids are surprised to learn they are headed to Disney, but we had to tell our kids. For starters, we wanted them to save their own money for their souvenirs, but we also save as a family.
We’ve learned how to help the kids save more over the years by using a few tricks and techniques. Here are a few of my tricks:
Create Family Goals
Teaching kids about long-term savings can be a challenge, especially if they are young. Creating family goals allows you to have a focus for your family on a like-minded goal. It’s also a fun process to talk about realistic goals.For instance my kids wanted to purchase a large water slide for our backyard. They have giant slides (like this one) at places like Target, but at $400 they are cost-prohibitive for something we’d only use for part of the year.
The first thing we did was discuss why they wanted the slide, how often they thought they’d use it, and the enormous price tag.
Then I showed them the cost of a summer membership at our local YMCA was less expensive-only $297.
They shared what they like about the Y, and what they like about the slide. Essentially creating a pro and con list.
In the end the cheaper price, the amenities, and the fun of swimming (and sliding) at our local pool won out over the backyard slide.
Family Piggy Bank
Creating a family piggy bank is another great way to get everyone to save for a family goal. Little kids can collect change they find around the house, and older kids can save a portion of their allowance. Adults can empty their pockets into the piggy bank once a week, and dump all the change they collect into the piggy bank too.
We use a giant piggy bank and empty it about once every other month at our bank’s coin counter. We usually save about between $300-400 a year this way without much effort, and the funds have helped us buy a swingset for our backyard, take vacations, and will help with our upcoming trip to DisneyWorld.
To encourage your kids to save more, or reach a specific savings goal, you can offer to match savings or they can earn a ‘bonus’ for reaching a savings goal.
You can choose one of the following methods of matching or offering bonuses:
- Add 50% extra at the end of the month like a 401k matching plan.
- Match savings 100% when your child reaches a goal. For instance, savings $100 for a trip and matching it with another $100 when they reach their goal.
- Set a % ‘bonus’ offered at the end of each month. For instance offering 5% extra each month. This will teach them the value of saving.
These can all be adapted to your own methods. In the end it’s about rewarding savings, and teaching them about the importance of saving for their goals.
Our Plan for DisneyWorld
Each of our kids will have saved over $100 for this trip, a nice amount for souvenirs, extras, and any extras they want. While they have $100 to spend, I know not all of them will use their funds. So, I plan to offer them a bonus for any money they bring home which will help them choose one or two more meaningful souvenirs.
What advice do you have to get kids saving?