The carefree months of summer are almost here. But does that carefree feeling seem far far away?
It could be due to the sting of financial stress many families face during this season: added expenses for childcare, extracurricular activities, vacations… ice cream! Even the little things add up.
This year, twenty-six percent of Americans are opting out of summer travel. For most of them, they just can’t afford it1.
However, fifty-two percent of Americans still plan to take a summer vacation. Does this mean they are better positioned financially? Not necessarily. More than 4 in 5 of Americans intend to fund their trips with a credit card, planning to charge an average amount of $1,4672.
And unlike vacations, not all summer expenses are optional. For many parents, the added cost of summer childcare for school-age kids is a financial burden. Nearly half of American parents say it is hard to afford summer care or camp for their children3.
Employers CAN help return summer anticipation and joy to employees through their financial wellness program. Encourage participation using relatable real-world examples. Events like summer childcare, vacations, back-to-school extracurricular fees and holiday gift purchases are all planned events. They aren’t unanticipated emergencies. Using a budgeting tool available through a financial wellness program, employees can gain a clearer picture of what they are currently spending and what they could and should be saving. A budgeting tool that incorporates data from employee financial accounts further enables them to identify seasonal expenses, allowing them to plan accordingly by making adjustments to their budget and current spending.
Being able to build a budget and plan for seasonal expenses empowers employees. Instead of anticipating summer with stress, it gives them the opportunity to greet summer with a plan. Employers can use examples like these to share the benefits of financial wellness programs in a way that resonates with employees.
1 Survey: High costs are keeping many Americans from summer vacation
2 NerdWallet’s 2019 Travel Credit Card Study
3 Better Life Lab Summer Care Survey, n=1335 U.S. based parents of children age 4 to 14