Travelling with kids can be an amazing experience but it can also be a little overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time planning such a trip. Children are excited to explore new places, taste new foods, experience different cultures and spend quality family time. Therefore focus on all these positives, do your research and preparation well and let yourself enjoy every moment of the trip with your loved ones.
Parents are often reluctant to plan for trips abroad when the kids come along. The general belief is that going away with kids is too costly and many people are put off by that though. Is that really the case though? There are plenty of families who manage it very well without having stacks of money in their accounts. It’s all about the correct planning and knowing some useful tips which you can read below to help you travel on a budget. Who knows? You may even become a digital nomad family!
Take a read through these practical tips to give you some confidence that you can take your kids abroad and not spend a fortune.
Create a budget
It’s always a good idea to plan your budget which you are willing to spend on your holidays and after allocate it throughout the days of your stay. This will prevent you from overspending at the beginning and will keep you on track. Obviously you need to be a little flexible and if one day you spend more, you just need to be more careful the other days.
Choose budget-friendly food options
If you have the facilities at your accommodation try and prepare some simple meals yourself to keep the food costs low. Use the local supermarket to buy some essential foods and prepare your breakfast or sandwiches for on the go. Alternatively, you might search for all-inclusive hotels which work out cheaper than dining out all the time. Before booking, check the hotel requirements as in most cases kids under a certain age are not charged or pay a reduced fee.
Rent a Car
Flying may be the quickest way to reach your destination, but it can also be the most stressful. Driving allows you to stop whenever and wherever you want, which can be a lifesaver when traveling with kids. It also allows you to pack everything you need for your trip without worrying about baggage fees or limited space. Alternatively, you might choose to fly to your destination and rent a car, so you’d need to apply for an international driving permit online. An IDP is a requisite for many car rental companies. If you are stopped by the police while driving, having an IDP can help the officer understand that you are a responsible driver.
Travel before your kids turn 2
Maybe you weren’t aware but travelling with kids under 2 is a savings on its own. Airlines normally don’t charge fares for under 2s, only a standard fee, accommodation is normally free for them also even though they get a cot on their own and often food which is included in the package deal is also free.
Travel before your kids start school so you can book during term time
Surely you’ve heard complaints from family and friends about how much prices are elevated during school holidays. Starting from airplane tickets, accommodation and entry tickets to all kinds of children’s entertainment venues. For this reason it’s best to travel before your kids start school or when they are still young and it’s not a big deal if you take them out of school a few days earlier, unless you live in the UK, to be able to cut some costs.
Book activities on your own before you arrive
Although it might be tempting to book activities as a package deal it will surely be more costly. It will take a little more research and a little extra of your time to book transport and entry tickets alone, but if that means cutting costs it’s in your benefit to do it alone. Once you’ve picked your destination, search for local activities/fun fairs/ theme parks such as Peppa Pig World appropriate for your kids’ age group and reserve your tickets beforehand as sometimes you might also benefit from early bird discounts.
If you follow these tips and choose your destination wisely can you easily have a great holiday abroad with your little ones on a budget. It’s very important to do your research well, check out the cost of living of your chosen destination, check out the currency they use and convert it to your local currency and make some calculations before booking anything. Also it’s good to have a read through some city guides for kids to get ideas where to take them.
Don’t be afraid to explore the world with your little humans as these are the moments they will always remember and you will treasure one day.