If staying cooped up indoors with a houseful of children demanding to be entertained while it pours with rain outside sounds less than appealing, then a family holiday abroad this Easter could be just the ticket.
But if you’re on a budget and feeling a little strapped for cash, it can be hard to justify splurging on a break.
Here are six ways to save on your next family holiday, whether you’re taking a quick break at Easter or looking forward to a longer, lazier stay on sun-soaked shores later this summer:
1. Be flexible
If you’re looking to save, then try to be flexible when it comes to dates or destinations. Rather than looking for specific holidays, be guided by the deals – if you can be flexible, you’ll get a lot more for your pounds. Timeshare owners with points can often grab a good deal by looking out for special last minute offers.
2. Travel during “shoulder seasons.”
We all know costs soar the second it comes to the summer, so consider travelling when everyone else is staying at home. If you want sunshine, then try holidaying during “shoulder season”, particularly in Europe – the weather is still beautiful, but the resorts are less crowded, meaning you’re far more likely to bag a bargain.
3. Remember extra fees
While it may be cheaper to fly to Italy than it is Thailand, your money will go much further in the latter, so always consider this when making a decision. Another handy tip is to keep airline fees in mind as some of the no-frills companies often charge for bags and for a large family, those additional fees mount up fast.
4. Use social networking
Almost all the airlines and many major timeshare brands have Twitter feeds and Facebook pages, which are a fantastic way of sourcing out the best deals. It also pays to sign up for discounted opportunities on sites such as Groupon.
5. Get friendly with the receptionist
As soon as you get to your resort, ask your concierge or receptionist for deals and upgrades, especially if you’re traveling with kids. Concierges will also know the best restaurants, as well as any venues which offer discounts for families.
6. Stock up on shopping
One of the biggest travel expenses is food, but you can save serious cash by buying snacks, bottled water and breakfast options at the local supermarket. This is where the big money-saver – a self-catering shared ownership apartment – comes in, leaving more money left over for souvenirs and ethnic jewellery and gifts to bring home with you.