Traveling on a Budget with Kids
Traveling with kids on a budget is a daunting task. Not only are their more people to pay for, but also the act of simply loading children up and carting them to someplace unfamiliar is hard. Exhaustion can easily set in before the bags are even packed. Thus, many parents wait for that elusive moment when the children will be old enough to go. Yet, there are some unexpected perks to traveling with kids. Saving money doesn’t have to be difficult or miserable when on a family vacation.
Create A Budget and Stick to It
Creating a budget may seem like an obvious and simple enough task. However, once the excitement of being on vacation is in the air, it’s easy to toss all thoughts of budgets out the window. The key is to set a reasonable spending limit – something similar to daily home expenses – and determinedly stick to it. Don’t choke the fun out of the trip, but be reasonable with on hand cash.
Consider Multiple Options
Perhaps traveling with children is different, but that doesn’t mean it must be a negative experience either. Sometimes the key is to consider options that have never been thought of before.
- All Inclusive Packages: Explore all inclusive packages. Some of the most expensive parts of vacations are eating and lodging. Why not get a deal on it all while also staying somewhere that offers onsite activities and amenities for the whole family?
- Camp: Camping is not only inexpensive, but there are also a variety of places to put up your tent or RV. Any area that begs to be explored will almost certainly have nearby camping amenities.
- Avoid Peak Season: One excellent reason to travel with young children who aren’t yet school age is that any time of year can be a time of adventure regardless of school vacations. It isn’t unusual to be able to enjoy warm weather at the beach at a hugely reduced cost just a week or so after schools go back into session.
- Carefully Choose a Destination: Let’s face it. It’s usually much more difficult to take children on overly long trips. However, carefully choosing a destination nearer to home can not only prevent uncomfortable, cranky children, but can also help with sticking to a gas budget. A place doesn’t have to be far away to be refreshing.
Search for Deals
Don’t be afraid to utilize deal sites and specials. Often, websites like Groupon offer half off popular destinations and activities. Check around and see what awesome escapade can be had on the cheap.
Younger Kids Are Less Expensive
In real life, small children are quite expensive. Diapers, formula and outgrowing several clothes sizes annually can make a wallet rather flat in no time at all. However, in vacation world, it isn’t uncommon for children under 2 to get free admission into pricey attractions or to eat for free at any number of restaurants. Don’t be afraid to take advantage of these perks.
Traveling doesn’t have to be put off until the kids are older. Create a budget and don’t veer from it. Likewise, look for cash loopholes, such as all-inclusive package deals or even vacationing closer to home to help with gas expenses. The key is to be realistic with expectations.