Saving for an Iceland Escapade

When Django and his partner, Caitlin, started planning a vacation, they knew they wanted to ditch their hometown (New Orleans) heat for awhile. After some research, they decided the lush landscape and misty weather made Iceland the perfect destination.

Iceland’s known for its breathtaking landscape, cascading waterfalls, and of course the magical Northern Lights. It’s also known to be pretty expensive, so Django and Caitlin knew they’d need to save a decent amount before takeoff.

With four months to plan and save, Django started an Iceland saving Goal in his Simple app, and contributed to the fund daily. After tucking away a small amount from his Safe-to-Spend every day, he hardly noticed the money piling up for their eight day adventure.

Budget in mind, and the desire to explore the backroads, they reserved a camper van for the first five days. They also booked some overnight accommodations ahead of time in Reykjavik, the country’s capital and largest city, to get out of the rain and end their trip comfortably. Other than that, specific plans were pretty much up in the air. Their sights were set on an open road and a flexible itinerary.

django 4

After much anticipation, they finally arrived to Iceland’s grey skies and rolling hills. They felt prepared with the funds they’d saved, and the excitement to start exploring kicked in right away. They went to check out their van so they could hit the road.

It turned out to be a stick shift, which neither of them had experience driving. And without the ability to charge their phones through the van’s cigarette lighter, they also realized they’d be without directions. But they quickly got the hang of the driving rhythm, and decided to use well-traveled Ring Road (an 800 mile road that encircles the entire country) and people at pit stops as their navigation system.

Django 3

With gas prices and restaurants being pretty spendy, they stopped at grocery stores to cut down costs. Gas was a necessity, but instead of dining at restaurants (where the average meal can cost around $21.00 USD per person), they made meals using equipment that came along with the rental van.

As they drove the whole south coast of the island, they enjoyed the hot springs in the hills, the quaint towns with roaming horses, and everything in between.

Although their van broke down mid-trip and a roadside rescue took place, Django and Caitlin took each experience in stride. They both ended up spending just $20 more than they’d planned…which is definitely a success if you ask us.

Django and Caitlin, your trip looks amazing and we’re so excited to help you save for what’s up next – we hear it’s Germany, Prague, and Paris! Oh my.

Where are you headed on your next adventure, and how are you saving for it? We want to cheer you on. Let us know on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram by tagging the post with #SavedForThat.


Disclaimer: Hey! Welcome to our disclaimer. Here’s what you need to know to safely consume this blog post: Any outbound links in this post will take you away from, to external sites in the wilds of the internet; neither Simple or our partner bank, BBVA Compass, endorse any linked-to websites; and we didn’t pay/barter with/bribe anyone to appear in this post. And as much as we wish we could control the cost of things, any prices in this article are just estimates. Actual prices are up to retailers, manufacturers, and other people who’ve been granted magical powers over digits and dollar signs.