It’s still technically winter, but department stores are full of Easter eggs and swimwear, which means spring is just around the corner! It’s time to start dreaming of sunshine, blooming flowers, and rising temperatures. But the most exciting thing to dream about? Your family’s spring break vacation! If your budget’s tight (and whose isn’t?) we’ve got some great tips on how to find and plan a fun family trip that’s affordable, too.
Water Park Wonder
Hotels with indoor water parks have greatly increased in popularity the past few years – and for good reason! These family-oriented hotels almost always include water park admission for the whole family in the room fee, and most have plenty of other activities for kids to do as well. Some, like the Kalahari Resorts in Wisconsin and Ohio, also have a wide variety of outdoor activities if the weather is already warm. Got one of these great water park hotels like Great Wolf Lodge within driving distance of your home? Look into a mini-vacation! Staying just three nights or so instead of a whole week is another great way to save.
Check Out Your Nearest Big City
Most larger cities are stocked with fun family activities such as children’s museums, zoos, and major or minor league sports teams. For an affordable mini-vacation, why not find a great hotel price on Priceline or Expedia and book a few days in the nearest big city? (Choose a hotel with a pool for the kiddos, of course!) If you have memberships to your local children’s museum or zoo, find out what other venues accept that membership (most have a reciprocal program) and plan your vacation where you know you can score a couple of free entries. Which leads us to our next point…
Grab Those Discounts
Finding coupons and discounts to make your vacation more affordable may take some extra time, but it’s almost always worth the effort. If you’re a member of AAA or are military, there are usually discounts to take advantage of. If you are staying at a hotel that’s near an amusement park or other attraction, ask about a package deal. Another discount-hunting MUST is signing up for the email lists of places you’d like to stay to make sure you never miss a coupon code. Similarly, always email the local convention & visitors bureau to see what discounts they can offer you.
Rock A Staycation
If it’s just not in the budget to travel this year, make the most of a staycation. There’s always something new to discover nearby. Make it a goal to visit a certain number of parks you’ve never been to or hit that local museum you haven’t visited in forever. Plan a special vacation-themed menu for the week or a different scavenger hunt for every day. Or, you could do what we did and simply enter “staycation” in your Pinterest search box and explore the dozens of ideas that will soon be at your fingertips. A little effort and planning can show the family that you don’t have to be away from home to have a great time together.
Are you ready to get into planning mode? How is your family saving money on a spring break trip this season? We’d love to hear your tips in the comments!