Celebrate a financial milestone during COVID times

Post date: 2020-09-22 10:49:55
Views: 8
My partner and I just finished paying off a mortgage in six years, and we are soooooooo excited about hitting this milestone! Originally we said we'd take a trip to Aus and NZ to celebrate and visit some friends, but due to COVID, that is off the table for now. Looking for suggestions on how to make it feel like a big deal celebration - because it is a big deal! - even with COVID restrictions.

I recognize there are high levels of class/financial privilege in this Ask, I hope it doesn't sound braggy.

Even though we planned for this aggressive pay-down schedule and adjusted our spending to meet the goal, we still lived a very comfortable lifestyle over the past six years - we ate out ~3x a week or more, we have a car (18 yrs old but still running OK), we didn't have to work extra jobs or hours to make extra money, our clothes and furniture and household stuff are the way we want them to be. So it's not like I can say, "Now that we have more cash flow, we can finally buy an amazing new mattress to finally get a good night's sleep!" because we didn't put on hold any quality of life purchases like that.

My goal is to mark this achievement with a celebration that feels different. I don't want it to feel like just another weekend dinner out to a restaurant. Of course we can go to a fancy hotel and spend more, like one we would go to for an anniversary or birthday. But even that feels pretty pedestrian (am I a snob now?). I was just mentioning yesterday that I felt there were diminishing returns on meals that are over $150 - yes the service is fancier but the food is not that much more amazing! And I mostly care about the food (I don't really drink). This is why a big trip was appealing. I even toyed with the idea of flying business class on a long-haul flight, which I've never done before. That felt more special, because it was something we wouldn't ordinarily do. However that is off the table during COVID.

Any ideas from the hive mind?

About us:

  1. We are both in our late 30s. We don't have kids, and not planning on having any.

  2. We live in a major Canadian city in BC. Assuming current COVID regulations, we're OK to travel within BC by car.

  3. We both like food, traveling, gardening/plants, video games, live performances (comedy/theatre). My partner drinks alcohol, I do not.

  4. In general we prefer experiences to "stuff," especially living in a 600 sq. ft. space!

  5. We are both pretty practical in our spending - we gift each other luggage and baking pans and socks for Christmas. This probably helped us a lot in meeting our goal, but it's hard to "splurge" when we don't really desire any splurge items. We're not into jewelry or designer brands, we already have a nice TV and a gaming computer, we are happy with our couch and mattress and kitchen tools that we have...

  6. We have a couple of senior cats so we don't like to leave them home alone for more than 5 days at a time (neighbour checks in on them, but they much prefer having our company all day).

  7. We enjoy some spa-style experiences like sauna or getting our feet scrubbed, but price is still a factor. I cannot bring myself to spend $250+ on a massage no matter how rejuvenating/detoxifying (?)/whatever other BS claims it has.

  8. We also like to read on our own Kindles (and ignore each other), and playing board games for two.

Thank you for your ideas!
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