How to fund your retirement travel

For many older Australians, travelling during retirement is a much-deserved reward after a long career. Whether you want to buy a caravan and trek around the country, jump aboard a cruise ship, or sign on for a luxury tour of Europe, you’ll need to spend some money to have a little fun.

Here's what to consider when planning the next chapter of your life.

The trick to working out which holiday will suit you is to look at all the available options and see which ones match your lifestyle. Make a short list, then review the costs. Once you’ve narrowed it down to one option, you’ll be able to choose the most appropriate way to fund your next adventure.

Travelling in your retirement

Older Australians are the fastest-growing age group travelling overseas, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The number of people aged between 65 and 74 holidaying abroad increased more than 80% between 2011 and 2016.

Australians aged 45 to 69 years old are keen to seek out new experiences, with travel high on that list. We're also among the biggest spenders in the world when it comes to travel, with a TripAdvisor study finding Australians planned to spend an average of $14,500 on travel in 2016 (more than any other nationality).

Planning your adventure

· Going on a cruise: Cruising holidays are an increasingly popular option for a lot of holiday-makers. They offer everything you'd expect from a holiday –entertainment, exotic travel destinations, dining and shopping – all under one roof. Cruises are ideal for people with physical limitations who yearn for some fun as they get older.

· Relaxing on a luxury tour: Perhaps you'd like to go on an all-out luxury tour through Europe or Southeast Asia? You can usually prepay your accommodation, meals and travel expenses and a knowledgeable guide can show you the best locations.

· Carefree in a caravan: For those looking for adventure a little closer to home, you could try investing in a caravan and spending a year or two travelling around Australia.

Paying for your travels

When it comes to travelling, many options allow you to prepay for some, if not all, of your trip. Cruises and tours may also include upfront fees.

If you've saved up some money but need more, or don’t want to use all of your available cash, you might consider supplementing your savings with a personal loan. Personal loans allow you to withdraw a sum of money that is repayable over a set term. This is usually one, five or seven years. You're able to take out a secured or unsecured loan, depending on the amount of the loan.

Once you've boarded the ship or touched down in another country, you might want to use your credit card to pay for your day-to-day expenses rather than exchanging your money for the local currency. Just watch out for the fees you might incur by using your card overseas. It's also a good idea to keep an eye on the exchange rate, as this will affect the amount you're spending.

If you've managed to pay off your mortgage before you retire, you might consider taking out a reverse mortgage. A reverse mortgage allows you to borrow against the equity in your property, which you can access as a lump sum, income stream or line of credit.

No matter which option you choose, it's important to get the right financial advice so you find a suitable financial solution for your travels.

Compare credit cards and personal loans to help finance your next big trip.

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