4 Tricks to Save Money on Family Vacations

Going on vacation with young children can be stressful enough but add to it the hit to your wallet and that stress can increase. One of the things that helps is to be able to survive the road trip financially. Through our years of traveling we have discovered some tips that work well in keeping costs down. Here’s four tricks to save money on family vacations you might not have thought of.

Skip the hotel room and go for the condo/timeshare

Often times renting a condo for a week in combination with the savings you will get with a full kitchen will make it less expensive than staying in a hotel for a week and eating every meal out.

This will save you some money by being able to prepare breakfast and some additional meals in the room. Not only does this save money, but if your children are like mine, eating out is a rush to finish your food before the kids get bored and want to leave.

By being able to do laundry, you can save airline baggage fees by packing less or save room in your car by bringing less.

To see what’s available where you’re headed, check out VacationHomeRentals.com

Purchase gift cards in advance of your vacation

We have a local grocery store that offers double fuel points on gift card purchases and at times will offer quadruple fuel points on gift card purchases.

To ease the financial burden of a Disney vacation, I purchase a small gift card each week out of the grocery budget. This helps to build up our vacation budget for park tickets and other purchases and also provides me with a discount on gas.

If you don’t have a local grocery store that offers reward points for gift card purchases, you can check sites online like GiftCards.com that may have discounted gift cards.

Some credit cards also will offer rebates when purchasing gift cards. At Target, you can get their Red card and link it in to your checking account and save 5% on gift card purchases when using the Red debit card as well as 5% on all your other purchases.

Scout out restaurant menus ahead of time and kids eat free options

Most restaurants will have their menus online so that you can scan the kids menu as well as the prices often times. Making sure that the kids meal includes a drink and sides in the prices is essential.

We were surprised with a $3.95 glass of orange juice once.

You can also look for local restaurants that provide kids eat free options if you are on a tight budget.

AllMenus.com has a selection of local menus for many cities nationwide.

Use the discount websites like Groupon/Livingsocial, etc.

You can search for entertainment options at your vacation destination using these types of deal sites. Often times you will find at least one option that will provide some entertainment for the children with some relief to your wallet.

Just visit Groupon  and search for your destination city (or one along the way).



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3 Comments on “4 Tricks to Save Money on Family Vacations

  1. Great tips! I second the first one! As our family grows and we need more room and beds, I’ve come to see how much more cost-effective apartments and condos are compared to hotel rooms. Thanks for linking up to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party. I have pinned your post to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Board.

  2. We almost always stay in a condo vs a hotel. It just makes so much more sense in terms of the ability to cook and eat meals there! I love your second idea of purchasing gift cards ahead too! Visiting from SITS Sharefest!

  3. Great tips! I love using a condo or house. It’s nice to have the space for everybody to spread out. Breakfast and dinner in is money saved! It’s also great to have a place that has a washer and dryer so you don’t have to pack as much.

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