SuperMoney Interview Series: Aditi Mathur Kumar of On Being a Vacation-Loving Thrifty Mom

aditi kumar headshotAditi Mathur Kumar is an author of two hilarious fiction books, one of India’s top travel bloggers, a travel writer, an Army wife, a mom, and a sleep-deprived social media addict. We recently chatted with Aditi to hear her thoughts on traveling, parenting, and saving money (sometimes all at once!).

Tell us a little about yourself. Why did you decide to start a blog?

I am a digital advertising girl by profession, and I’ve worked on a lot of digital campaigns with a variety of brands in India. Writing, however, is my first love. I started blogging in 2006 and have been going at it since then. The reason I started blogging is that I read about it in an article one day and wanted to immediately try it because it sounded like fun and I had an urge to be heard and read by people. It has been a good journey ever since, and I relish it.

When you’re traveling around Asia, is it challenging to deal with changing currencies in various countries? How do you overcome these challenges?

Oh yes, mainly because I’m pretty bad at quick math. So I take my own sweet time to fish out my phone, go to the calculator, and then convert. However, carrying travel cards is something I am beginning to love. They are easy to get and easier to use.

Name one tip for saving money while traveling with kids that many people may not know about.

My daughter is four years old, and the best tip to save money when traveling with kids around this age is to go for apartments with kitchens or service apartments instead of fancy hotels. It’s better to get some staples and some fresh vegetables/fruits to make a few meals instead of the kids eating out all the time. This saves a lot of money and also comes with the satisfaction of feeding your kids good, fresh, and healthy food.

When you do go on vacation, what types of amenities, activities, or experiences do you like to spend a little extra money on?

Adventure activities. I am not the kind to spend a lot of spa treatments, fine dining, or an evening of drinking and partying. But show me an adventure activity and I can’t stay away. From skydiving in Israel to mountain biking in the Himalayas, I have tried everything.

When you’re at home, do you have any secrets for reducing household expenses that you would like to share?

I still need some help with my financial planning, but I have discovered that planning a budget at the start of the month helps me a lot.

Since you say on your blog that you favor teaching children about money and financial management, what are some of the ways you do this?

My four-year-old is too little to be able to understand calculations, but I have taught her the importance of saving; from chocolates to toys, she knows that if she saves the extra ones, she can use them later. We are also trying to teach her to use a piggy bank, which I hope will be a good start when she’s a little older for more lessons.

When it comes to saving money for your kids’ future, what are your goals – and how do you go about achieving those goals?

My husband and I hope to be able to give our daughter the best education; and that includes not only academics, but also things like music, arts, and sports – whichever interests her. Investing in good reliable plans is the first thing to do, and we have done that. From mutual funds to long-term plans, we do our best to ensure that she has a secure future.

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