Good Life

Flight Centre Stokvel can make your travel dreams come true

Turn your travel aspirations into reality with communal savings

Image: 123RF/Ammentorp

Communal savings funds have long been a way for South Africans to save up for everything from parties to furniture and groceries. Now, many are taking their collective buying and saving power one step further and joining forces to make their travel dreams come true. They’re pooling their resources to travel as a group, take turns to travel or even fund a family member’s trip such as a honeymoon.

The advantages of group saving

As much as we dream of tropical beaches and far-flung adventures, it’s not always easy to afford going away. The rand's movements are unpredictable and it can be difficult to plan for a trip six months or a year down the line.

Group buying allows you to buy a holiday package debt-free in a much shorter period. Even if you don’t have the full amount available to travel right away, you and your group can pool resources to book something much sooner than you could on your own.

“It’s human nature – it’s easier to save when you have a common goal as a group than when you’re doing it on your own,” says Lance Nkwe, head of new markets at Flight Centre. “You have that group accountability motivating you, so you’re not going to skip putting money aside.”

There are also more material benefits to travelling with several people. Many airlines, hotels, tours and restaurants offer special rates and reduced prices for groups.

“Booking holiday packages as a solo traveller can get expensive, as most accommodation charges a per-person-sharing rate,” says Nkwe. “You’re generally charged extra, and that can quickly add up. Travelling as a group works out significantly cheaper.”

Finally, there’s the flexibility offered by stokvels – there’s none of the red tape and unnecessary paperwork that formal savings schemes offer. People can work together towards going on holiday without having to jump through hoops for credit approval or checks.

Starting a stokvel

Getting a travel group together is as easy as chatting to someone who you get on with – a friend at work or a member of your church group, for example – and talking to them about their travel aspirations. Once you’ve assembled your group, it’s important to agree upfront on a clear goal.

“Make sure everyone agrees on the basics such as how much each person needs to contribute and how the amount is going to be split,” says Nkwe.

“Are you aiming to travel together or will you take turns so a different member gets to take home the pool every month?”

This is where your group can benefit from bringing your savings to Flight Centre Stokvel, which gives you access to a dedicated travel consultant who can advise you on the details.

“Every group is different,” says Nkwe. “Getting the right advice ensures that you’re harnessing the full power of your stokvel to make your travel dreams come true.”

As more South Africans fall in love with the idea of seeing their beautiful country and the world, group-saving schemes will go from strength to strength.  The world is waiting, and seeing it can be as simple as finding the people who love travel as much as you do.

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This article was paid for by Flight Centre.

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