February half-term: cut the costs of a family holiday

Everyone with a family knows how expensive it can be to take your kids on holiday, especially if you can only bring them away when school has broken up. That’s why we’ve put together some tips on how you can cut the costs of a family break this February half-term, so you can have a trip away together without breaking the bank.

1.       Enjoy a staycation

Many people instantly think of a holiday abroad with sun, sea and sand when they hear family getaways. But we want to prove that you don’t need to jet away to a sunny location to enjoy yourself – although, this is, of course, sometimes nice too!

We’re spoiled for choice when it comes to fantastic places in the UK to visit, from Wales and Scotland to Dorset and London. Whether you want a city break where your kids can soak up some culture or you are more interested in spending some time in the fresh, open air, you’ll find something that will pique your interest in Britain. So, why do you need to go anywhere else?

Just think of how much money you will save on aeroplane tickets, particularly if you have a number of children to pay for!

2.       Visit friends or family

These days, lots of people have friends and family all over the country – we know we certainly do! So a school holiday like February half-term is a good opportunity to make the most of these connections and visit your loved ones.

If the kids’ grandparents live in different areas of the country, we’re sure they’d love to spend time with your little ones. This could be a great chance for them to bond with one another – and also give you a break for a few days! But if you’re planning to visit friends, we would check that they’re OK to have your brood around for a week or so, as you don’t want to outstay your welcome.

3.       Stay in a home away from home

You don’t have to just stay with relatives or close mates to enjoy seeing the beautiful sights in the UK, as you can rent a cottage, farmhouse or barn and relax in a home away from home. These types of accommodation are particularly popular among families, as you can completely relax in a property of your own, with the kids’ toys strewn in the living room, the children being noisy early in the morning and appliances such as a TV and DVD player on hand.

With hotels and B&Bs, you are forced to pay for lunches and dinners out for the entire family every night. However, with self-catering accommodation, you can save a lot of money by whipping up something for dinner yourself. We think this is particularly useful if you have kids with fussy palates, and will mean you don’t have to budget so much for your trip during this busy school holiday period.

What’s more, if you have siblings with children too, you can pitch in for a large holiday cottage in Wales from Sykes Cottages or somewhere else in the UK, and split the costs of the accommodation and food between you all, which will save you quite a bit.

4.       Get active and creative

You might have grand plans of taking your youngsters to many museums, galleries and activity centres during the February half-term, but it is not cheap to do this, and with every extra child and day spent away, the costs can spiral out of control.

We’d recommend finding things to do that don’t cost a penny. Bring your bikes along and you can go for long rides through the countryside, which will enable children to enjoy being outside in the fresh air. But, this is February and if the weather takes a turn for the worse, it is a good idea to have a back-up plan. In this case, we’d whip out paint sets, crayons, reams of paper and any other crafty bits you can find. You and your kids can have hours of fun trying to make something – just be sure you are able to clean up all your mess afterwards!