Planning cheap family vacations is often something that we need to do because travel and entertainment is just so expensive. Caring for a family is very expensive, and when you want to take your family on vacation costs can get out of control. But, family vacations don't need to break the bank. With some careful planning and some flexibility you can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on your family vacations. Cheap doesn't mean that you have to give up the things that you want, it simply means that you have to get creative to get the things you want without spending every dime you have (or don’t have).
Cheap family vacations can be just as great as something that you pay a lot of money for if you plan ahead of time. Most of the time, planning ahead can save you hundreds of dollars. Most people are aware that when you purchase your airline tickets several weeks or months in advance it's typically much cheaper then when you buy in the days leading up to your departure. So, when you are planning your family vacations, purchase your airline tickets as far in advance as possible. Your savings here can go into buying fun things, eating out, or other forms of entertainment while on vacation.
Another great way to save money on airline tickets and car rentals is to book them online. Several of the online travel web sites offer substantial savings to customers who book all of these things at one time. Even if the savings is only ten percent, ten percent adds up when you consider the amount of money you'll be spending when you buy plane tickets for your entire family, rent a car, and pay lodging expenses. That ten percent can go to fun things, or go into the planning of future family vacations.
Vacation rentals are a great way to save money on family vacations. Vacation rentals are bigger than hotel rooms, giving your family more space. Since most come with full kitchens you can cook some meals and save on restaurant expenses. Another way to save is to book a vacation rental direct from the owner, instead of through a management company, who essentially is a middleman.
Another great way to take cheap family vacations is to stay in an area right outside the popular area you wish to visit. Hotel rates and rental fees are usually outrageous in very popular areas, but if you travel even a mile away the rates are often much lower. Rates skyrocket during the seasonal months; you'd be surprised by how much. When you are first considering family vacations, call ahead to your destinations and inquire what their off season prices are, you'll likely suffer sticker shock when you hear how much the prices are inflated when the tourists come around. You can save so much that it's worth waiting just a week or two to literally save hundreds or even thousands of dollars during your family vacations. It doesn't matter how big your family is, the price difference between the seasonal and off season prices may be enough to keep the richest man home until prices drop!
Family vacations can easily be great experiences for every member of the family, especially when money isn't a constant worry on the trip. Planning ahead and taking the steps to save money where you can, will help alleviate the financial pressures so that the whole family will have a good time, including mom and dad. Cheap family vacations are not synonymous with poor quality because nothing has to be given up, no compromises made. If you plan it right, you can stay in nice places, enjoy the things you want to enjoy, you can just do it for less!
David Goldschmidt heads http://www.GreatFamilyRentals.com , a leading directory of vacation rentals by owner. Find villas and condos for your next vacation. Owners can list vacation rentals for more bookings.