A holiday is one of life's big expenses. I actually went through a couple of years without going on a real holiday as I felt that they were so expensive and that we couldn't justify the cost. We are so busy with work now though that I think it's worth it to spend the time together having a proper rest so we do try to save up to have a break when we can.We don't have huge amounts of money to spend on a holiday so I try to make our plans as cheap as possible which means that we can still enjoy a holiday, but that it won't break the bank. So here are my top tips on how to save money on your holiday.
Time it right
Holidays are cheaper in school term time so if you don't have school age kids try to travel in these times. If you do have school age kids check whether their school will let them have time off for a holiday. Even starting your holiday a couple of days before the schools break up can save you a serious amount of money. Here in Wales our holidays are sometimes a week out from the rest of the UK, which means holidays come up cheaper so keep a look out to see if your child's school holidays fall differently to others.
Get the best deal
Shop around for the best holiday deal. Look at package holidays and compare the cost to buying the different elements separately (flights, transfers, hotels). Go between travel agents to see if they can offer you better deals on the same holiday. Check prices online. You can save big money by using voucher code and discount websites. If you look at https://www.myfavouritevouchercodes.co.uk/thomas-cook-voucher-codes you can save up to £200 off certain Thomas Cook holidays. There are also ways in which you can find hotel rooms cheaper. You can also make some money back by using a cash back site like Quidco.
Save money on eating out
Our children are really fussy eaters and we really begrudge paying a lot of money for them to eat out because they waste most of it. I find all inclusive easiest as often drinks and ice creams are included and these always add up. Sometimes we go half board though, knowing that they don't eat much for lunch anyway and a few supermarket snacks and ice creams will get them through the day. We always pack lots of snacks and drinks on days out which means that we don't have to buy them expensive food when we are out. If we do eat out, we try to look for buffet restaurants as the kids can pick and choose what they eat, and if they don't like something it won't be wasted and they can choose something else.
Do your research
I always thoroughly research where we are going before we travel so I know which places we can visit for free or have low entry prices. Local tour prices might be cheaper than the ones your tour operator arranges so that is worth bearing in mind. Often you don't even need to pay for a tour - research the area before you go and make a plan of what to visit and take a map and be your own tour guide.
Make sure you have insurance
It's really important that you have the right insurance in place, before you travel. If you are going on an expensive holiday have it in place when you book so that it covers you if you need to cancel before you leave. It can be a big expense to have to pay medical bills or to replace lost or stolen baggage when your insurance could have covered it. For now as UK citizens we can apply for EHIC if we are travelling to Europe which will reduce or negate the cost of medical treatments in some European countries.
I hope that these tips will help you save a few pennies on your holiday this year. Do you have any top tips for saving money on your holidays?
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Disclosure - this is a collaborative post