Announcing the winners of the “summer vacation” contest!

Last week we held a contest about what kind of vacation or “staycation” you’re planning this summer… and how you’re paying for it.Summer vacation-placard

There were many interesting and some heart-tugging entries, making it a bit difficult for our team to pick the winners, but here are the ones we did pick – and why.  Two entries were also chosen at random.

Each of five winners will receive their choice of a $25 dining gift certificate or a personally autographed copy of my best-selling book, Bank On Yourself, for themselves or to give as a gift to someone they care about.

And together, the team picked their favorite entry and that person wins a $100 Amazon Gift Certificate.

Read on for the winning entries…

Shannon, who heads up our Social Media team, chose Barry Levy’s entry because…

I love Costa Rica! In fact, my wife and I got married there. If you’re going to use credit cards, this is the way to do it – get them to pay you! Barry, have a great trip, takes lots of photos, and post a few of them on our Facebook wall at www.Facebook.com/BankOnYourself!”

Barry Levy wrote…

I am planning a trip to Costa Rica to see rain forest, turtles, zip line and enjoy the tropical splendor of the area.  It goes on a credit card, which gets paid when the bill comes in.

It was saved for and it took two months to put aside the vacation funds.  I am not using Bank on Yourself policy to pay for it, and have no problems putting it on a credit card. That way I get cash back, miles back and if a credit card is paid each month in full, it has no interest costs to me or finance charges.

This is a change from my first choice, which was to swim with the whales at the Great Barrier Reef, but that vacation is being put on hold for next year when it won’t conflict with previous plans.”

Lynn, who heads up the Bank On Yourself Customer Service team, picked John Starcevich’s entry because…

I understand his life and his lifestyle, and I love his attitude!  Wish he and his wife could be our neighbors.”

After hearing that, I’ll bet you’re chomping at the bit to read John’s entry, so here it is:

My wife and I go on a “vacation” a couple of times a week. We are lucky to have a great backyard and we enjoy it often. We love our lives and have no need to get away and therefore we don’t take a traditional vacation. Also it saves alot of money when you are satisfied and thankful for what you have, and, we are both very satisfied and very thankful for everything we are blessed with.”

Alan Twelkemeier and his wife

The secret to “guilt-free” vacations…

In my best-selling book I interviewed the Twelkemeier family, who were then saving up money in their Bank On Yourself policy to use for vacations.  Since then, they accomplished their goal and gave us this update on their inspiring story:

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The first way we used Bank On Yourself was to take a vacation to Mexico – the first true getaway my wife and I were able to take in the eight years we’ve been married. This allowed us to do that guilt-free. You don’t have the guilt associated with putting the cost on a credit card, or using your savings to pay for it. I cashed out my 401(k) plan from my former company to get this started. Then the market went south. The losses I would have had are staggering. I’m analytical and I examined this thoroughly. It makes sense and we are very pleased with the move we made.”

Alan Twelkemeier also told me that he and his wife set up a plan to repay their policy loan over a one-year period.  At the end of the year, that money would all be back in their plan, along with the interest they used to pay to credit card companies, allowing them to recycle those dollars and take guilt-free vacations every year for the rest of their lives.

key concept:

If your Bank On Yourself policy is set-up properly and the right companies are used, when you borrow from your policy, it continues growing as though you never touched a dime of it! Where else can you get this advantage?

Want to find out more? Request a FREE Analysis that will show you how a custom-tailored plan could enable you to reach as many of your short term and long term goals and dreams as possible, in the shortest time possible, without the risk of stocks, real estate or other investments. Wondering where you’ll find the funds to start your plan? Here are eight common ways to do that.

Here are the rest of the contest winners…

My own top pick is David W., because of his positive attitude about not being able to take a traditional vacation this year and his understanding of several key financial principles:

There will be no traditional “vacation” for us this year because of debt, high fuel prices, a child going to college/moving out, the economy and job insecurity. We’re not really miserable, though. Like others have said, we just try to focus as best we can on being thankful and satisfied with what we have.

That doesn’t mean we don’t want more though! That’s why we researched and ultimately started our first Bank On Yourself policy a few months ago. And it feels great! Knowing the money we put aside each month is safe and growing at a predictable rate is tremendous peace of mind for us. Not to mention being there for us to borrow against when and if we need it – without penalty and without affecting its rate of growth.

Until recently, I had no hope of ever being able to retire. Now, with our BOY policy working for us (with many more to follow!) I’m starting to have real hope again and it feels wonderful. To be able to retire someday and not HAVE to work (unless it’s doing something we love!) would be worth all the vacations in the world to us.

What is a vacation anyway, but an enjoyable rest from “work”? Lord willing, we will have years of “vacation” during our retirement – and we are confident our BOY policies will be a big part of making that possible. Thank you Marilyn for getting us started and helping us get our debt under control – and thank you too, Pam! I only wish I’d followed through on this about 12 years ago when you first sent me the information. Live and LEARN!”

The two entries that were chosen randomly (using the Randomiser software) will receive their choice of a $25 dining gift certificate or an autographed book are…Vacation-Suitcase

1. Robert Nehapatain
2. Dawn Clark

And now for the Grand Prize winner

Our team picked Brenda’s entry to win the $100 Amazon Gift Certificate, because she faces her fears head-on, works hard and she has smart savings and spending habits.  Brenda – we hope you have a marvelous trip! You deserve it!

Here’s Brenda’s entry:

My vacation will be in September. I decided that for my 50th birthday that I was doing something special. I will be flying to Rockland, Maine and getting on a schooner for a cruise up and down the coastline. This is something that I’ve wanted to do for years. I’m afraid of water and told myself that I could either get over my fear enough to do it or just forget about ever doing it. I decided that I could do it. I have already purchased my plane tickets and my cruise package. Buying them early saved me a lot of money and booking my cruise for my birthday saved me 25% off my price. I saved my change that I got from my tips as a waitress for almost 2 years. I didn’t miss it. I never counted on it to help pay the bills. This is my dream vacation and I’m going to enjoy it. Because I already have the trip paid for, all my change now goes to my spending money for the trip.”

Thank you to everyone who shared their personal story!

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