The Most Affordable Family Vacation You Can Take

Crushed that you can't afford to take a family vacation this year? You may be able to afford one if you take a different approach, like the one outlined here!Once your family starts to grow, the idea of taking a vacation, especially if you’re on a budget, can be daunting.

Family vacations aren’t cheap. There’s airfare, hotel, food, incidental expenses–not to mention the logistics of planning one can be a nightmare enough that it makes you just want to give up before you even go anywhere!

Which is why I have the perfect solution for the most affordable family vacation: a Staycation!

There are plenty of ways people like to interpret a staycation.

Many think that it means you simply have to stay in your own house, but in reality, a lot of people choose to rent hotels in their city, or in a neighboring city.

Here are several ways that a staycation can be the most affordable family vacation, while still feeling like you’re on a faraway getaway!

Driving Distance

Choose a locale within driving distance of where you currently live. For family vacations, something within the two hour range is your best bet.

If you happen to live in the middle of nowhere and think that there is nothing worth seeing in a two-hour radius of where you live, then consider renting a house with a pool. Just being in a different environment will make you feel like you’re getting away, without the added pressure of keeping your own house clean.

If you time your driving correctly, you may even be able to get the kids to nap in the car on the way there.

If you live in a big city, consider playing tourists for the weekend. Decide to stay in a hotel anyway and do all the things you’ve said you’ve wanted to do but never have because of lack of time or planning.

By actually choosing to get out of your house and stay at a hotel within your city, you’re forcing yourself to let go of obligations and play tourist to enjoy being out with your family.

Forgoing airfare – which is one of the most expensive line items of a family vacation – can save you hundreds, if not thousands.

Cheap Accommodations

Staying in a hotel within your city or neighboring city is one of the most luxurious feelings. You can score a cheap hotel with sites like Priceline or Hotel Tonight. Children don’t know the difference between a five star and two star hotel. All they care about is the pool, which many hotels have.

If a hotel is still out of your budget, consider renting a house instead through a site like AirBnB. Many times, having access to all the amenities a house offers is better when traveling with small children. No need to worry about bothering your neighbors with your loud kids!

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Bring your own food. After accommodations and airfare, the next biggest expense is meals! Feeding a family can get very expensive, especially if you’re forced to eat out at every meal. But one of the joys of vacation is pigging out, or at least sampling the local cuisine, and not worrying about picking up afterward.

Renting a house can help you save on food costs, by allowing you to have some meals at home and still giving you the option to have meals out. Frozen pizzas are easy to cook and are a cheap replacement for expensive dinners.

Breakfast can be easily made at home, leaving you only the cost of lunches to worry about – which are often much cheaper than dinner for the same amount of food! Even better, you can take leftovers and reheat them for another meal, rather than wasting it.

Budget For It

If you’re serious about taking a family vacation and just don’t see how it’s possible to afford one, start budgeting now. Set aside just $25 a week, and in a year, you’ll have $1,300 saved up! That’s enough for at least a mini four day getaway or up to a week for your family of four!

Everyone needs a break every now and then; you can still build great family memories and keep your vacations affordable.

Do you enjoy taking staycations? What’s the most fun activity you’ve done while on one?