Tips to keep family trips budget-friendly

Tips to Keep Family Trips Budget-friendly is a sponsored post from “The Good Stuff by”, an online journal about beauty, health, DIY crafts, entertainment, home, fashion, food, travel and life, backed by a team of experienced journalists and writers. 

Family trips can help you reconnect with your family. From kids having to go to school to parents having to work all day, it can be pretty easy to lose touch with each other. However, family trips are often costly, and the thought of you having to spend a lot of money to organize the journey might be exhausting.

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to go on a pocket-friendly family trip. Even better, you do not necessarily have to pay less at the expense of comfort. As long as you can be savvy enough to pick the right accommodation, travel at the right time, and cut unnecessary costs, you can enjoy the trip without any discomfort.

Here are some insights on making your family getaway budget-friendly:

Travel in the off-season

Almost everyone wants to travel on long weekends or during the holidays. Since businesses in the hospitality industry understand this, they will tend to raise their prices during the peak season to cater for the demand. Not only will accommodation be expensive, but it might also be more costly to find places to visit as a family.

Even worse, the crowds of people that travel during the peak season will make your trip less enjoyable. Instead, travel during the offseason to enjoy fewer crowds and lower prices. Of course, the offseason comes with some downsides such as borderline unfavourable weather. With the right attention to detail, however, you can travel to spots that will not be affected by such disadvantages.

Be flexible with meals

In case you happen to have some coupons from some of your favourite chain hotels, be sure to carry them during the trip. This will be especially helpful if these restaurants do have branches in the areas you will be travelling to. Also, you should seek accommodation from hotels that offer free breakfasts as this will help cut costs.

Since lunch tends to be one of the slowest business hours for local restaurants, most will offer attractive deals to invite the locals. If you must have eat-outs, do so during lunch-time to enjoy the low food prices. Furthermore, you will get the meals at a pocket-friendly price, often meant for the locals.

As for taking meals from your rooms, make orders on the go. This way, you will cut the cost of tipping the room service attendants. Lastly, carry your snacks to avoid having to buy from local stores. However, it is wise to ensure that your hotel has no policies against outside foods.

Buy local sim cards

Communication can get expensive when on a family vacation, but it is something that you cannot do without. Other than having to call back home, you will need to be in constant communication with each other. To be safe, ensure that every family member has a way to communicate with you during the trip.

While visiting coffee shops to use their WiFi might seem intuitive, it can be costly considering that you will have to pay for drinks during every visit. Besides, public WiFi tends to be quite unsafe. You can look for accommodation with WiFi access, but this only cuts the cost of communication within the hotel.

Sure, there is always the idea of travelling with gadgets to extend your room’s WiFi, but it might be uncomfortable if you want to travel light. Consider buying local sim cards to make communication within your new location cheap. Additionally, you can ask locals about the best ways to use sim cards and save extra cash. In most cases, communication service providers tend to tailor their services to the typical budget of the locals.

Be flexible with transportation

Once you lock in the dates of your family trip, start hunting for air tickets or identifying transport options. This is because air ticket prices might increase during the last minute. Alternatively, you might have the option of taking a road trip to your ideal location, but you have to account for all hidden costs.

Other than fuel costs, you have to factor in parking fees, accommodation for the night, and even toll fees. If the costs of a road trip will be lower than taking a flight, then this will be the better option. Besides, it will allow you more time to bond as a family. Make sure that the route you are to follow is safe enough for travelling with kids.

If you are travelling outside the country, the cheapest option might be to use public transportation when moving around. It will also offer you a chance to interact with the local communities and experience their way of life. While it will be cheaper than luxury transport, it should be the last option if it will be unsafe for your family to use it.

Cutting cost should only be an option if it can coexist with comfort and convenience. The more research you can commit to your location of travel, the easier it will be to cut cost. You can prepare for your trip by looking for ways to stretch your budget beforehand like casually using coupons and discounts to reduce your monthly expenditures to increase your trip budget.  Consider the tips above to bond more as a family without breaking the bank.

26 thoughts on “Tips to keep family trips budget-friendly”

  1. Your tips on keeping family trips budget-friendly apply to everyone, including the solo travelers. I recently used these tips – travel in the off-season and flexibility with meals and transportation – to go on a 1-week vacation to Belgium, and total cost of the trip including airfare, accommodation downtown Brussels, snacks, and activities was less than $1500.

  2. Great tips to keep family trips budget friendly. I 100% agree with being flexible with meals. One of the hardest parts while traveling is dealing with the concept that you don’t have to eat out for every meal. I get you want to try the local cuisine but you don’t have to for every meal. So we have been trying to get better at going to the local grocery for small meals especially breakfast. Plus, I find it a great adventure to explore local groceries to see what is culturally different!

  3. Great tips for all types of travelers – family or solo! I am very budget conscious and these are great things to keep in mind!

  4. Great tips! One tip I could add is to find homestays rather than hotels or resorts. Not only are homestays affordable, but you get to do what you do normally at home like family TV time, family home-cooked dinners, etc. And the kids are usually familiar with what is comfortable to them. If the homestay owner has kids, then your kids have earned themselves new friends and playmates. 🙂

  5. Some great tips. I travel with my family alot (all 10 of us) and it requires lots of advance planning. We like to cook most of our meals at home and so we often opt for book a house through airbnb instead of a hotel. It can be difficult to travel off peak however having the young children at school but yes its definitely a budget saver 🙂

  6. I travel with my family most of the time and must admit some of the points you have raised here could help save a lot . Unfortunately one of the biggest costs is travelling around the peak holiday season which makes everything much more expensive.This cant be avoided with schools in the UK being very strict about taking children out of school. Being flexible on the way you travel is another great way to save some money . Using m,ore public or shared transport makes it more cost effective. Eating local food in local establishments when travelling helps cut costs and gives an experience of the local life as well.Thanks for a very helpful post

  7. I am a budget traveler too and I think being on budget is also good in taking care of the environment, as we can choose traveling by land rather than taking a plane.

  8. Great tips and I use all of them! I also enjoy off season travel because it’s less crowded. I’m not a breakfast eater, so lunch is my big meal, saving me money. And SIM cards were new to me but totally worth the effort!

  9. These are excellent tips for families on a budget. I think being able to travel in the off-peak season is so important, as holiday prices shoot up when it’s the holidays, so unfair for parents!! Getting a local SIM card when traveling is a good point for me too; sometimes the free WiFi in coffee shops is slow and not secure either.

  10. Very good tips. I always feel lunches at local places are good and pocket-friendly. And certainly a local SIM is always far, far cheaper. I am scared of using my international roaming. It costs the earth.

  11. We always travel in the off-season – it makes such a difference! We also tend to like a lot of meals. We need to look more into local sim cards!

  12. Before we have kids we were able to travel off-season. But since our kid is in school, we have no choice to travel cheap. So we always have to book trip way ahead in order to get better offer and early booking discount.

  13. Great tips to save money while traveling and that too with a family. Off peak traveling is a great idea to save money on hotels and airlines and also we can avoid crowd too. I too purchase local SIM while arriving on airport and also carry some local snacks or buy snacks from local vendors instead of ordering room service.

  14. You have shared amazing information and I have read the complete blog and gained very informative knowledge. Thanks for this and keep it up.

  15. Those are all great tips for trying to manage costs when planning a family trip. Another tip that I think is good is trying to determine whether your children’s ages will give them benefits. For example, some places will allow free access or free stay to children under 8 years old, while others, you have to be under 5 years old. Picking a location or a hotel with these extra benefits could save you a lot of Monty.

  16. Great tips, especially the one about being flexible! My favorite way to save money on trips is by choosing my destination based on the cheapest airfare. Sydney

  17. Some great tips here. We always buy a SIM card when we arrive at a new destination – not only does it help for organising taxis etc we also use them to hotspot our devices if networks are not secure. Also we find that travelling off season helps keep our budget in check.

  18. Wonderful tips for family vacations! We follow all of these tips. Buying a local SIM card has been a big budget-saver for us. We also enjoy traveling during the off-season when possible. It’s great to avoid the crowds too!

  19. Whether you are traveling with a family or solo, these are helpful tips to save money. Having a local SIM card is always helpful, especially if you need to communicate with the people you are traveling with. I find public transportation a great way to save money too and it is a great way to feel like a local.

  20. I love all of your tips! I never thought about getting a local sim card because within the EU it costs the same now. But the next time I’ll go to Switzerland I am going to get one. The last time my phone bill had been a little upset with me…
    Furthermore, travelling in the off-season is probably the best decision one can make but like you wrote it is harder to time it perfectly.

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