Even though the borders remain closed, planning a trip is a great way to channel your adventurous energy to a good purpose. Instead of being frustrated, start planning your next trip now, so once the travel restrictions have been lifted, you can immediately get on the plane.
Despite the increased costs, traveling with kids is a great way to create amazing family memories and learn about new cultures. It is especially useful for children since they can pick up new languages much easier and quicker than adults.
This skill will give them new mental and cultural perspectives as well as make it easier to learn languages in the future. Nonetheless, the question still stands: how do you save money on traveling with children?
Go for a Cheaper Destination
Instead of planning your next vacation to Spain or Hawaii, take a look at more affordable options, like Southeast Asia. Thailand and Vietnam will offer you amazing spots for a fraction of the price you would pay anywhere else in the world. This part of the world will give access to breathtaking beaches and mountains, tons of international eateries, and ancient Asian cultural legacies.
Look for Affordable Flights
The cost of tickets would make up a big portion of your overall expenses. So, if you can save money on a flight, go for it! Monitor cheap flights and special discounts on Skyscanner. Try to plan your vacation for an off-season which means skipping Christmas time and traveling in January or February.
Besides that, booking your flight for Tuesday or Wednesday instead of Monday or the weekend will save you an immense amount of money. Additionally, keep in mind that extra luggage might be quite expensive, so pack light and take only the necessities.
Make Visa Photos by Yourself
Traveling requires a valid passport as well as a tourist visa for which you will need your latest photos. Instead of going to a photo studio, stressing your children out, and spending a substantial amount of money on photos for the entire family, consider preparing images on your own.
It’s easier than you think: get the best passport photo software, take shots with your camera or phone, upload them to the program, and it will do the magic. You simply select the type of document and the country of destination, and the program will automatically crop the image to the right size.
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Consider Alternative Housing Options
When you travel to another country you want to immerse yourself in the local culture and learn as much about it as you can. You will not achieve this goal by staying at a hotel. Instead, check out HomeExchange – a platform that allows you to swap houses with travelers from the country of your destination who would like to visit your home country.
Not only you will save a ton of money on accommodation and eating out, but also will be living like a local which is a great adventure by itself.
If you don’t have your own house to exchange, we highly recommend trying house sitting – i.e. taking care of someone’s property and his pets while the owner’s away. We’ve been house sitting for over 5 years and visited loads of amazing places thanks to it. Give it a try and check out our Ultimate Guide to House Sitting with practical tips that will help you to start with house sitting,
Research Group Discounts
Many countries offer special group discounts. For example, Switzerland has such a discount for group transportation within the country: trains, buses, subway. It will come in handy if you are planning on exploring the entire country and visiting many places during your stay.
Germany also offers a travel pass for groups which gives you a discounted entrance to museums, amusement parks, and other tourist attractions next to transportation. Take your time and research the country of destination to find the best offers for big groups and families.
Take it Slow
You open a page on TripAdvisor and see the ten most popular tourist attractions, and think to yourself that you need to visit every single one of them. Well, don’t. Instead of visiting a generic amusement park built specifically to allure tourists, spend an afternoon at a local park.
Your children will learn how to overcome the language barrier and play with kids with different cultural backgrounds whereas you can have a coffee and talk to other parents. This activity is free and easy to organize but your family will preserve these memories for years to come.
Travel with Another Family
It is a truly amazing idea for two main reasons. First, you will save money on car rentals and accommodation. Second and the most important, you can share looking after children, so you can both have some alone time and take a break from parenthood.
The final advice is to take a deep breath and actually try to enjoy your vacation. Don’t let small things bother you and don’t get obsessed with sticking to your plan. If something goes wrong, just go with the flow and make the best out of it.
Pack & Travel!