Collaborative Post¦ Summer’s just around the corner and so is that family holiday. You’re already budgeting and saving like a pro, right? If you’re not, or you’re wondering how to get your spending money together before August, you can find out more about cutting costs and budgeting from Creditfix. Once you’re all wised-up, you can check out these other brilliant hacks.
Finding freebies for the kids
This might take a bit of searching, but these holiday places are out there. If you’re looking for a resort that doesn’t charge for children then you need to do it now as these gems get snapped up pretty quickly. Other resorts and groups offer big discounts once you book for more than a week.
Look for cheap or free flights
Most airlines offer small-to-large discounts for children, depending on where you’re going and how old the child is. Children under two years of age usually pay 10% of your fare (well, strictly-speaking, you pay…), with smaller discounts for older children.
Look carefully at your calendar
When your kids are all pre-schoolers you can take your pick of the months and travel off-peak. Once you’ve booked your time away, remember to reduce your nursery hours for the period to save even more. If your kids are in school, then some careful fiddling about with flight searches at the very end of August can still bag you some bargains.
Head to the right destination
Use the Post Office Worldwide Holiday Costs Barometer to gauge how much things like drinks, sunscreen and a meal for two cost. Places like Bulgaria and Sri Lanka are great for families on a budget, for example.
Alternatively, you could stay within the UK and save on the flights and car hire costs. Wherever you decide to go, remember that leaving the booking until the last minute can save money but seriously narrow down your choices.
Drive yourself overseas
If you’re brave and your children are relatively civilised then you could drive to mainland Europe. You’ll save money on the flights and if you travel on an overnight ferry, you’ll be saving the cost of a hotel too. This option needs military-style planning, though, as you’ll all need regular breaks along the way in budget hotels or campsites.
Hiring a villa and doing your own cooking most nights is a brilliant way to save money. If you share the load with another family, you can bring the price per person down quite a bit and take turns at the hob.
Book your airport parking well in advance
As soon as your flights are booked, sort out your parking because the earlier you claim your spot, the cheaper it’ll be. Speaking of the airport, you should also make sure your luggage doesn’t exceed the airline’s allowance as you can get badly stung by charges.
Cut the cost of essentials
Spend some time looking for the best health and travel insurance deals for your family. If you’re travelling within the European Union then apply for your free European Health Insurance Cards to save on health insurance costs. You also need to bring your own adapter plugs with you as they’ll cost a lot more at the airport.
Plan your days out
Look at the admission prices for the attractions at your destination. Very often, there’ll be big variations during the week and it’s always cheaper to buy your tickets in advance online. If you’re in a city, invest in a family city pass for free or discounted travel, meals and admissions to popular attractions like museums.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.