A good family vacation can bring your entire crew closer together and create memories that will last a lifetime. Unfortunately, these perks often come at a tremendous cost. Depending on the destination whether it’s a UK trip or Thailand adventure, and the season in which the trip takes place, a travel excursion with your loved ones can leave a gaping hole in your finances. While there’s no denying that family vacations are costly affairs, there are numerous steps you can take to soften the financial blow and keep your savings intact. Anyone looking to embark on a first-rate family vacation without breaking the bank can benefit from the following measures.
Opt for Driving Over Flying
It’s easy to see why so many vacationers choose flying over driving. It takes far less time to reach your destination and requires virtually no effort on the part of you and your family. However, flying – particularly during the busy travel season – can be exorbitantly pricey and eat up a sizable chunk of your travel budget. Even if reaching your destination via car requires more time and effort on your end, you stand to save a considerable sum of money. The funds driving frees up can be used for a variety of vacation-related endeavors, thus making the trip even more memorable. So, if you can drive to your intended vacation spot in a reasonable amount of time, consider relying on your car instead of shelling out a small fortune for plane tickets.
Consider Off-Season Travel
Many families prefer to travel during the spring and summer months. After all, these seasons are synonymous with agreeable weather and time off from work and school. However, since so many travelers hit the road during these times of the year, airfare, lodgings, travel packages and assorted attractions tend to be quite pricey. Budget-conscious families can nip this problem in the bud by traveling during the off-season – i.e., the fall and winter months. While weather conditions may not be quite as nice, the money you’ll save should prove well-worth any minor inconveniences. During the off-season, you’ll have access to hotel rates and airfare prices you won’t find at any other time of year.
Not only will off-season travel save you money, but it can also increase your destination options. While certain destinations may be outside of your travel budget during the busy season, you may find them to be comfortably affordable throughout the off-season.
Look for Family Travel Packages
When perusing possible destinations, keep an eye out for family travel packages. A good travel package will consolidate airfare, lodging and various attraction fees into a manageable lump sum. Even if a certain destination doesn’t openly advertise family travel packages, don’t give up before doing a little bit of online research. For example, anyone interested in an affordable Niagara Falls family vacation can find a convenient assortment of travel packages with minimal effort.
Keep Snacks on Hand
As any seasoned parent can attest, children are constantly hungry – especially when affordable dining options aren’t easily accessible. Whenever a child gets a snack attack while on vacation, many parents head for the nearest street vendor, refreshment stand or restaurant. Needless to say, this approach to feeding your kids can eat away at even the most robust travel budget. With this in mind, make a point of keeping snacks on hand throughout your next trip. Sure, carrying food around can be a little cumbersome, but this slight inconvenience stands to save you hundreds of dollars.
You can take this a step further by limiting the number of meals you eat at restaurants. Staying at a hotel that offers complimentary breakfasts and packing a lunch when going on outings can decrease food costs exponentially, thus freeing up funds for other facets of the trip.
For many families, vacations serve as the highlight of the year. Unfortunately, as enjoyable as these trips can be, they’re generally not easy on the wallet. Many of us have simply accepted exorbitantly expensive vacations as a fact of life and resigned ourselves to spending unreasonable sums on travel excursions with loved ones. However, even if you’ve grown accustomed to shelling out a small fortune every time your family is bitten by the travel bug, it’s never too late for course-correction. Putting the tips outlined above to good use can help you save a bundle on your crew’s next big travel excursion.