Family Vacation Tips

Cheap Family Vacations

[fa icon="calendar"] Nov 13, 2012 7:49:00 AM / by Sally Black

Sally Black

Cheap Family VacationsCheap family vacations are out there, parents just need to information on how to find family vacation deals. Affordabel family vacations are not always the best deal. What parents really want is the best value for their vacation dollars. If your family is in desperate need of a vacation, here are some tips to make your affordable family vacation a reality...

Money Saving Priorities - You may think your family will never be able to afford a great vacation but many times planning and saving for a family vacation just isn't a priority. In many cases, the money is there but saving for a vacation just isn't a priority. Take inventory of your family spending and make a budget to save. Put the kids to work collecting and banking any loose change around the house. Perhaps you can cut back on eating meals out, wait for DVD releases instead of a night out at the cinema...bank those bucks and you'll be surprised how quickly your family vacation budget will grow.

Points and Mileage - If your job makes you a road warrior, be sure to enroll and save your frequent flyer miles. They can help shave spending on airfares for your family vacation. Credit card reward points can also help offset travel costs. Families can quickly build points by using their credit card to buy essentials like groceries and gas. Be careful that you budget correctly as credit card interest will hurt your efforts.

Passports - This is one of those cases where you have to spend money in order to save money. Investing in passports will open up a world of travel possibilities for your family. In many cases, a Caribbean or Mexican all inclusive family resorts can often work out to be far cheaper than a theme park vacation or renting a house at the shore (not to mention a lot less work for mom). Operating costs for all inclusive resorts are far less expensive in the Caribbean and Mexico. That's why most all inclusive resorts are located there. They offer families great vacation values.

Discounts in Numbers - The best deal is a FREE family vacation. One way to save is to become a group leader. If you can get enough people to join you, then you can travel for FREE. Generally speaking, this means for every 10 double adult hotel rooms (20 adults), the 21st adult stays for free. For every 8 double adult cruise cabins (16 adults), the 17th adult sails for free. With Airlines, for every 20 seats, the 21st flies for free. If you have a big family, are active with your church, community, have a large blog following or warm the bench with other parents during your kids sports games, group discounts could really work to your benefit. Many of our groups have so much fun, folks commit to taking group vacations year after year! Please know you will be responsible for paying all taxes on free vacations (because Uncle Sam never gives anyone a free ride). Group discount fine print and rules vary. Vacationkids travel agents are glad to help explain all the rules for you and even supply flyers, brochures and support to help you get the word out to everyone you'd like to invite.

Family Vacation Budget - There are millions of vacation options out there. When trying to plan a family vacation, parents can easily get confused and loose focus. Have a family meeting, communicate with one another and decide the type of vacation you want. Setting a budget will help narrow your choices. Your Vacationkids travel agents will ask you for your family vacation budget as it allows them to work efficiently on your behalf to find a vacation that best suits your family and pocketbook. Family vacations are suppose to be fun. No parent wants to dread opening the credit card bill a month later!

Compare Family Vacation Values - An all inclusive family resort or a family cruise include features like transportation, meals, kids activities and entertainment. When you are comparing different vacation options, be sure to calculate and budget for food, sightseeing, activities and entertainment. When Vacationkids quotes family vacation prices to parents, we include taxes and fees. Be aware that many cheap family vacation deals found on the internet do NOT include taxes and fees. These necessary costs can often add up to hundreds of extra dollars.

Plan Ahead - At Vacationkids we often joke saying "planning a family vacation is just like planning a family...you need to work about 9 months in advance". Airline prices soar the closer you get to your departure dates. Hotels and resorts also offer deals far in advance. By planning ahead you have first choice of flight schedules and room options. If you have three or more kids and need a family of five resort or a larger cruise cabin, these accommodations are always the first to sell out. Once they are gone the costs of purchasing upgraded or additional accommodations may make your entire vacation cost prohibitive. Many resorts and cruise lines will offer price protection. This means if you book your family vacation in advance and there is a last minute price drop, you will be guaranteed the lower price.

Supply and Demand - The entire travel industry is based on supply and demand. This is particularly true with family vacations. Most families need to travel with their kids are out of school. This is why prices will jump anywhere from 35-70% during popular family travel weeks like the December Holidays or Spring Break. Avoid these weeks if you're looking for a deal. To save money and find great family vacation deals, think in reverse. To take advantage of great deals, try to take your vacation during September, early December or May. No problem if your children are not yet school age or if you homeschool. If you are tied to a school calendar, perhaps try to plan a couple of shorter escapes. Check your school calendar for some teacher in service days or consider taking the kids out of school to learn everything that travel has to offer.

Flexibility - Perhaps you've always wanted to take a Caribbean Cruise but can't afford a week at sea. Maybe a 3 or 4 night cruise will work? Sometimes, flying mid week instead of weekend to weekend can save parents a great deal. Are you willing to take your kids out of school for a great vacation deal?...the more flexible you can be, the greater chance you'll have of finding better family vacation deals.

Deal or NO Deal - Parents may hear about a fantastic Vacation deal on TV or online. Some tropical hotel is offering dirt, cheap rates too good to be true. Yes, the hotel may be cheap but airfares to that remote destination may be priced out of this world or your family must be willing to take double connecting flights to get there. Perhaps the airfares are affordable, but it may mean a four hour jungle trek for you and the kids so you're loosing two travel days out of your vacation week. Maybe they neglected to include taxes in the advertised price? Once again, this is where Vacationkids travel agents can help you make sure you are getting the best value for your family vacation dollar. Our experts can help you navigate and understand all the fine print.

An affordable family vacation is certainly possible. With a little planning, information and know how Vacationkids can make it happen for your family. Our vacationkids travel agents know all the latest family vacation deals out there, even ones not listed on our website. More important, we know which deals will work best for the specific needs of your family.

Topics: Affordable Family Vacations

Sally Black

Written by Sally Black

Sally is the Founder of Vacationkids.com Travel Agency and author of the book "Fearless Family Vacations". She is also the Director of Travel Agent Initiatives and Training at The Family Travel Association.

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