Lately I’ve been having a lot of conversations about ways to minimize the cost of holidays. Something that I don’t have a tremendous amount of first-hand experience with is holidaying on a budget when you’re traveling as a family as opposed to a lone traveler or young couple. The amount off additional expenditure that my friends who have children need to factor in is astonishing.
It’s not simply the additional costs of flights, extra rooms and an increased food budget; it’s the little things like new clothes, special diaper bags and so on. Even things I never would have thought of like beach toys and entertainment and the sometimes extortionate charges for a babysitting service so that Mum and Dad can actually have one night of relaxation on the vacation.
I thought that I would share a tip from my friend Amy. With three little kiddies and another one on the way, she and John, her husband, have been through the trials of attempting to enjoy a break while looking after their children and still trying to put money into college funds. Amy’s top tip for family holidays is to look into vacation home rentals rather than a resort or hotel accommodation. Because you’re renting from the owner directly you can often cut out the costs of a middleman, and many of these owners are simply leasing out their own vacation home when they aren’t using it, rather than running a business. These factors can mean that you end up saving a nice bit of money.
The added benefit, apart from conserving your budget, is that these vacation rentals
will normally have all the comforts of home. A fully-equipped kitchen means that the children’s snacks and any special dietary needs can be as easily organized as at home, and babies’ bottles can be heated as and when needed. Any special requirements or information can be arranged with the owner ahead of time, leaving you free to relax and enjoy your holiday without unduly stressing or upsetting your family.