How to Budget for your Family Holiday

Taking the family away can often really tip the money scales and more often than not we end up spending much more than we had originally budgeted for. So here are our top tips for how to create a realistic budget for your family holidays and stick to it.

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Book in Advance

Booking well ahead of time generally means you can get better deals and enjoy cheaper prices, so again jumping online and looking at the different prices in advance will help you make thriftier choices.

Also look at the different seasons that you could travel as if you are on a tighter budget, off-season prices will be much lower than around the peak season. Sof if you are flexible on when you can go, this could mean you get the same holiday for a reduced price.

Getting Around

Assuming you already know where you're going to go, you then have to decide how you’re going to get about once you're there. Factoring in taxi, buses and train costs all add up so you must make sure you research the local costs of public transport in that local area so you don’t get any nasty surprises.

Perhaps you want to make life a little easier for yourself and take your family car. If this is the case make sure you look into establishing an international driving license and any papers you may need when driving in a foreign country.

Perhaps your current car is not quite up to scratch and you’re considering investing in a new vehicle. One that will comfortably and safely ferry you and your family around at home and on your holidays. In which case you should start by researching your options online with companies like, where you can look into the best family models and the best payment plan options available to you.

Create a Checklist

One sure way to really burn through that budget whilst away is constantly having to buy items you realise you have left behind. Create a list of the usual ‘I forgot’ items such as phone chargers and personal hygiene items such as shampoos and baby nappies and make sure you are fully packed up on all your daily essentials. Walk around your home, if need be, and take note of the day to day items you use to take care of your kids and which of these items you will need on holiday. Then take into consideration any additional items you will need when you are there, such as sun hats, sun creams and blow up dinghies.

Think About Areas You Can Save Money

Eating out every night on holiday is one of the things we enjoy most about getting away. But then factoring daily restaurant breakfasts and lunches can quickly run up those holiday expenses. Research the local area for supermarkets where you can stock up on breakfast items and make up pack lunches for the day if you’re worried about dining expenses getting out of hand.

Free Activities

Again researching the local area in advance can pay dividends on saving the pennies when you arrive. Looking for cheap and cheerful activities that will keep the children happy will prevent you from shelling out for unexpected and more expensive options.

Look if there will be any days in the local monthly calendar where there will be an interesting festival, event or even a day in their calendar where certain galleries or places of interest offer free entry.

Looking at the facilities of your hotel or apartment will also help you to plan in advance what a typical day on your holiday is going to look like. If there is an outdoor swimming pool, or if you’re close to a beach you can pretty much assume that the kids are going to be happy for most of the day. However, if you’re planning a city or countryside trip you may need to dig a little deeper when planning cost-effective ways to keep your kids happy.

Don’t Forget Yourself

Holidays, of course, are not just for the kids, us parents also want to get the most out of our well-deserved breaks away from home. So setting aside a small budget for the parents is a good way to make sure you also get to pamper yourselves a little.

Maybe you fancy buying yourself a couple of pretty summer dresses or a nice pair of smart khaki shorts. Or perhaps you want to look into if there are any spa facilities at your hotel where you can enjoy a nice massage or facial. Or perhaps you and your partner will fancy one night out for a slap-up meal so have a look in advance at local babysitting services. Budgeting in these little extras will make sure that it’s all accounted for and you don’t feel guilty splashing out on any extra treats whilst you’re away.

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