Top Tips For Traveling With Kids Without Breaking The Bank

Written by Ashley Flores

Having children is expensive. Maybe you think that you can’t afford to go on holiday with the whole family. However, taking a trip with the kids doesn’t have to break the bank. There are many ways that you can make your money go further. 
Find Cheap Flights
There are a number of ways that you can get cheaper flights. Planning well ahead and booking your tickets early is one option. If you start looking early enough, you can also set price alerts. This way, you will be informed when relevant ticket prices change. 
If you have some flexibility, you can try out different travel dates. Maybe you can take your kids out of school a few days early to travel during off-peak times. If you are traveling during the longer summer holiday, you could leave two weeks into the holiday period. 
If you live somewhere with multiple airports, make sure you search for flights from each one. Be sure to shop around. If you are adventurous and prepared to go off the beaten track, you could consider lesser-known holiday destinations that may have cheaper flights available. 
Save Money On Food
Going to restaurants for every meal can absolutely kill your budget, especially if you have a lot of mouths to feed. Eating out, getting drinks, and buying ice cream can be fun, but try to save it for a special treat. 
At the very least, make sure that you are making breakfast at your vacation rental. To do this, you need to make sure that you are renting somewhere with kitchen facilities available. One of the great benefits of eating in is that you can explore some local food markets and get a taste of the local cuisine. 
If you go out for the day, take packed lunches. It doesn’t take long to make some sandwiches and grab some fruit. Also, try to take bottles of water with you. This way you will save a lot of money on drinks. 
Going On Trips
There are a number of ways that you can save money while going out on day trips. Consider walking places rather than paying for transport. This way, you save money, and you also get good exercise. If it’s a long way and you need to pay for transport, try to cluster all of the attractions that you can see in one destination, making sure you visit them on the same day. 
Do some research and find free things to do. There might be museums or guided tours with free entry. Going hiking and visiting beautiful spots in nature is always free. Some venues may offer certain days where you can visit for free.

A lot of attractions will offer a family discount. Alternatively, they may offer free entry for children if accompanied by an adult. All of this information can easily be found online. 
Think About Accommodation
Try to rent a vacation home rather than a hotel. Hotels are costly, and they don’t offer kitchen facilities, which means eating out for every meal. Renting a vacation home will probably mean you can do laundry and you can pack fewer clothes. 
It’s likely that a vacation home will also be more spacious, meaning more comfort for everyone. Renting a vacation home may mean that you have a pool, a garden, a terrace, or other nice features that the whole family can enjoy. 
When you are searching for a place to stay, consider widening your search area. Places with lots of tourists and popular attractions will be expensive. If you stay a little bit out of town, and have access to good public transport, it’s possible you could make big savings. 
If you really want to be sensible with your money, consider writing out a detailed budget before you travel. Be sure to include all the major expenses. This includes transport, food accommodation, day trips, and your phone bill. 
You can use a simple spreadsheet, or you can use a budgeting app on your phone. Be sure to stick to the budget. You should only break it if there is a genuine emergency. This kind of careful planning will ensure that you don’t break the bank. 
Using The Phone
Remember that you may be charged for data roaming. This could add up to a lot of money. There are a couple of ways to plan for this. You can contact your current phone provider and ask if they offer an international package.
Alternatively, if your phone is unlocked, you can buy a tourist SIM card upon arrival. Many countries will offer a 7 day, 14 day, or 30 day holiday SIM package. 
Letting Kids Handle Money
As a parent, you might find it hard to say no to your kids. One way around this is to give them a fixed budget. Let them know how much money they are allowed for snacks, souvenirs, and other small purchases. This can be a great way to introduce some simple financial education.
If they are a bit older, they may have their own bank account, which you could deposit a bit of money into. You could consider researching some free prepaid debit cards for teens to handle money.  
Collect Memories
Finally, a great way to save money is to focus on experiences rather than things. Let’s face it, we all have enough stuff. You really don’t need to stuff your bags with souvenirs. What you and your children will really remember is the adventure. 
You also don’t need to fill every moment. It’s okay to take a day off and relax at your vacation rental. Probably everybody will appreciate a bit of downtime.
In Summary
You don’t need to break the bank in order to travel with the whole family. There are many ways that you can save money on flights, food, trips, and accommodation. 
Make sure that you also write out a budget, that you plan for your phone usage while abroad, that you give the kids a fixed allowance for small expenses, and that you focus on collecting memories rather than things. 

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