Everywhere I turn I see reference to rising costs, worries about debt and generally news about people trying to save money. So I just wanted to share with you how a family of 4 can genuinely have a great day out for very little money.
Many are opting for a so-called ‘staycation’ this year – to clarify this simply means to have a holiday at home.
Whether to save money or to avoid the dreaded holiday hangover, it’s a popular holiday approach at the moment.
Despite opting for this type of holiday as a way to save money, some find it’s not how it pans out in reality. They find they are having to spend a fortune entertaining the family by visiting such as theme parks, taking trips to the cinema and even simply eating out at restaurants.
But do you really have to spend a lot to have fun? And do you have to spoon feed the children their entertainment or can you let them create their own?
Even with the good old British weather to contend with I believe you really can have fun without spending a lot and at the same time encourage the children to get their creative and inventive juices running and entertain themselves.
How about some good old fashioned style family fun on the beach?
Take the windbreaker to help make the most of any sun and avoid getting too wind swept. Pack a lunch of goodies from sandwiches to chocolate muffins to some healthy fruit. Pack a blanket, towels, buckets and spades….and maybe a fleece and some water proofs too…. and off you go.
If you haven’t a beach near you, how about a local park instead?
And I’m not just theorising here. We have 2 children in primary school and spent around 6 fabulous hours on the beach today.
It started raining on the way which didn’t bode well but the response from the children was ‘great we can build rain shelters’ – what they meant was they could dig a hole in the sand, sit in it and then use towels and waterproofs to cover and protect themselves from the rain, pretty inventive and effective. Not sure what the adults would have done mind you!
Thankfully after arriving at the beach there were only a few spots of rain so the promised rain shelter was not needed. In fact for the majority of the day there was a good deal of sunshine and the sun cream was thankfully needed. As was an ice-cream during the afternoon – the most costly expense of the day, in fact the only cost besides the cost of parking and the petrol to get us there.
The children spent the day in and out of the sea swimming and jumping the waves and building various sand inventions and holes. The adults were largely left in peace to relax and read – I’m now 20% through Twilight on my Kindle.
There was even an open Wi-Fi connection so we could use our smartphones to keep up with the emails – makes working very enjoyable! And of course there was a bit of Facebook checking and the odd Tweet going on too!!
So did we have fun? Yes absolutely.
Did we spend much? Not at all. As I said our costs were parking, petrol and ice-creams, amounting to around £10. Of course we had our picnic lunch too but wherever we were we would have had to have eaten so I haven’t counted that as part of the family day out cost.
Just hope we can make another trip to the beach soon!
If you’ve any ideas for a cheap family day out, how about sharing them?
If I come up with any more ideas myself of course I’ll share them with you too so do stop by my blog again soon – or why don’t you sign-up for my free newsletter and keep right up to date with all my tips and personal finance news and reviews.