Make sure the focus of your vacation is enjoying it, not budgeting it, says The New York Times…
People become so obsessed with saving that it becomes the focal point of the trip, the primary topic of conversation and even the subject of competitive one-upmanship. Oh, you drove a hard bargain at the hostel and paid $11 instead of $12? Well, I crashed on the floor of a church for free — unless of course you count the cost of aspirin for the backache and coffee for the lack of actual sleep. (Accounts of these grand victories, by the way, all too often take place over drinks that wipe out any savings many times over.)
The article has smart advice on when to spend more on things that actually enrich the experience.