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Summer is on its way and you may be hoping to take a vacation this summer with your family and wondering how you will pull it off. It is not too late to start planning a vacation for your family this summer. Here are some tips to get you started!
How to Make Family Vacations Affordable
Book hotels early and watch for deals. It never hurts to ask for a better deal if you see one at the same place you booked your room for your family vacation. This is also true for resorts or packages.
Don’t go through a travel agent. Not only will there be lots of fees, but the so-called discounts are often not there. You may be able to get your trip for less by doing the work yourself and making a custom package to fit your needs.
If possible, stay at hotels that offer breakfast on your family vacation. This way, at least one meal of the day is covered for your trip. Also, try to find hotels that offer mini-fridges and microwaves in-room for no extra fee. You can save on snacks and lunches this way by buying a couple groceries.
Map out the local places that offer free kid’s meals with the purchase of an adult’s for your trip. This way, you will mostly be only paying for the adult’s meals the whole trip and will substantially cut you costs for meals. Also, just like when eating out at home, make a food budget and stick with it!
Try to do half-paid entertainment and half-unpaid entertainment. Look at your destination’s Chamber of Commerce before you go on your family vacation and see what the locals enjoy for free. You might be surprised by what kind of festivals and fun is taking place at the time of your trip that can cost you little to no money.
If you plan on traveling by car, bring a cooler with you and refillable cups. Most gas stations allow you to fill cups with soda for less than the price of a bottle of pop and not as much as the full price of a soda out of the fountain. Also, in your cooler you can pack drinks, snacks and sandwiches so you are less tempted to stop for expensive food along the way.
Buy tickets in advance or online for family attractions at your destination. You can often get them at a lower price, especially if you buy before the attraction opens for the season. If the attraction is big, consider buying a 2 or 3 day pass so you can enjoy all aspects of it over a couple days rather than try to squeeze in all the fun in one day.
Skip eating out for dinner and instead do lunch. Dinner can be something simple like sandwiches. Lunch menus are often cheaper for the same food. If you want to eat out somewhere a little more upscale, try making the switch to lunch to save money on your trip.
If you are flying, you probably know that the more bags you check, the higher your cost is. Avoid some of these fees by having your vacation items shipped via US mail. This is especially a good idea if where you are going is to stay with family. Just have your items shipped there to your relative’s home to arrive in time for your trip. Ship the items back home when you leave.
I hope all these tips make for a GREAT, and affordable Family Vacation!