How to Get Away on a Budget

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How to Get Away on a Budget

Top tips for parents on how to have a memorable holiday, but keep the purse strings tight…

by Tanith Carey, author of ‘Mum Hacks’

Family holidays don’t have to cost the Earth, but statistics say that the average family spends £500 per person for a holiday, with 4 in 10 spending more than £500pp.

I think holiday times are precious, so it’s understandable that families are forking out more. However, remember that it doesn’t have to be expensive or long-haul to be a great break.

In one study of family vacations, it was found that children savour sensory experiences the most – moments like roller coaster rides or the feel of touching an animal at a zoo. In fact, one of the most memorable holidays moments has been found to be when families eat ice creams on the beach because it combines sensory experiences with moments of togetherness.

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So, bear in mind, it really doesn’t matter if you are in the Seychelles or Scarborough. If you treat every holiday like an adventure, then your children will too.

Tanith Carey: “Fly in the middle of the week when travel costs are cheaper”

• Remember that prices don’t only go high because of the UK summer holidays. The demand also spikes because other children in Europe are also off school. But many countries go back earlier than we do. For example, French kids go back at the end of August, while we Brits can get up to an extra week. So, opt for the latest possible summer dates to save cash. The cost starts to drop the very last week in August and the first week in September.

• My family has also saved money by doing activities at home during the summer holidays and going abroad in the two-week October half-term instead, which tends to be cheaper. Many countries, like Italy, where we went last year, were still surprisingly warm.

• Fly in the middle of the week when travel costs are cheaper. Try and minimise the number of bags you check in.

• Also, believe it or not, there are shops abroad that sell exactly the same nappies and formula that are sold here. So, save money on baggage and hold your nerve, taking only the basics in your luggage, and stocking up when you get there.

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Below, Sue Atkins – internationally recognised parenting expert, broadcaster, speaker and author of the Amazon best-selling books Parenting Made Easy – How to Raise Happy Children and Raising Happy Children for Dummies shares her top 10 money saving tips for finding the best travel deals for families?

  1. Book early to bag the best deals
  2. Fly from your local airport
  3. Bookmark great deals pages
  4. Think about the best time to go
  5. Drop your bags off the day before
  6. Get a free child place
  7. Pre-book kids’ clubs and excursions
  8. Choose your seats on the plane
  9. Take advantage of low deposits
  10. Shop around

Expedia has created the Family Travel Guide, an informative hub of advice and tips for parents. Results from a new survey with Mumsnet informed all the content on the site and a panel of parenting experts have been brought on board to contribute.

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