Finding a vacation that everyone can enjoy, from adults to children, is no small feat. Coming up with an option that doesn’t break the bank poses an even bigger struggle! Still, there are great frugal vacation ideas that you can do with your kiddos to create magical core memories that they’ll look back on for years to come. All of these options are baby-friendly, so no need to fear leaving the nursery behind. Here are our favorites!
Can You Thrive Living Frugally with a Baby?
Let’s make one thing clear: you can absolutely thrive living frugally with a baby or even multiple children. Whether you’re a one-income family or you’re saving up for a big purchase, living frugally does not mean a lackluster life. Instead, it simply means a shift in your mindset as you plan and stick to a budget.
Living frugally means that you’ve reevaluated your priorities. Perhaps having the coolest new clothing isn’t important to you, but experiences are. In that case, you might save your money to make sure your child has the best education or after-school activities. While that might mean you have a tight grocery budget, it also means you’re giving your kids a memorable childhood full of friendships and activities.
The same should be said for yourself. Just because you live frugally doesn’t mean your needs aren’t met – it simply means you find other ways to treat yourself. Ultimately, living frugally takes the emphasis away from stuff and puts the spotlight on the moment and the people around us.
Low-Cost Vacation Ideas With Children
Staycations are among the most popular vacation ideas with children. The beauty of a staycation is that you can take as many as you want – whether it’s during summer break or a week off school – and there are endless ways to do it! A staycation can be super low cost and even free! Just plan a few activities, gather supplies, and start having fun.
Our favorite staycation activities include:
- Build a fort and watch movies, read, or play make-believe in it
- Cook a new meal with your kids inspired by a foreign location
- Visit a local amusement park
- Set up lawn games and have a game day
- Have a water park day at home with the hose, sprinklers, and water balloons
Camping is typically super affordable and becomes even cheaper the more you do it. There is an initial investment for supplies like a tent, sleeping bags, cooler, and cooking gear, but once you have these items, you never have to buy them again. To save money, you can borrow gear from a family friend or buy it second-hand.
Unfortunately, you can’t take your nursery on your camping trip. Still, you can come prepared for baby blowouts by bringing the Matty Baby Changer. It’s waterproof, easy to travel with, and even includes a safety belt so you can change your baby no matter where you’re at!
Reserving a space at a campground is cheap, and you can often find one with hiking, swimming, and playgrounds to keep the kids busy! Plus, you pack all your own food, so you can really control costs
3- Road Trips
The further you travel, the more expensive things seem to be. One of the best vacation ideas with children is to take a road trip closer to home in order to manage costs. Check out nearby towns for a day trip. Or, visit destinations a little further away and get a hotel for cheap by looking for last-minute deals. Look for towns with free activities, like zoos and science centers.
You might also consider checking out national parks. Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon were ranked the top three destinations for best cheap family vacations by US News. Entry fees are low and you might even score an affordable hotel if you avoid the summer months when the parks are most busy. May and September are your best bet!
What are your favorite frugal vacation ideas with children? Share your recommendations in the comments below!