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Take a family vacation on a shoestring budget

Molly Cerreta Smith loves writing about all things mommy, parenting, food, health and travel. When she's not staring into the face of her Mac, she loves to hike, read, do messy crafts with her kids and compete in BBQ competitions with he...

Cheap family vacations

Even if you have to stick to a tight budget this summer, you shouldn't have to hold off on a family vacation. SheKnows offers great tips and tricks to save a bundle on your family vacation — wherever you are headed!


Consider your resources

Beyond checking out online deal houses like Expedia and Groupon for a cheap vacation package, consider other ways to put together a family vacation on the cheap. For example, take up that old college friend on her offer to have you and your family use her timeshare in Cabo or ask your aunt in New York if she’d mind sharing her penthouse with your clan for a few days while you tour the city.

Think outside the box

Summer hot spots can charge an arm and a leg during their peak season but locales that consider summer time their off-season offer big discounts for guests to come check out what they’ve got to offer. Research some cities that consider summer the off-season. You might be amazed at the discounts you can rack up. But make sure you’re aware of why a specific area is in the off-season during the summer. For example, you can grab a stay at a fabulous resort in Phoenix in August — but it’s about 110 degrees. If that’s not a deal-breaker, go for it!

Check out more fun family vacation ideas >>

Book early… or at the last minute

You know what they say: The early bird gets the worm. When it comes to booking flights, hotel rooms and more, early-bird booking can often work in your favor in terms of discounts or cheap rates. However, if you’re flexible on your travel dates or are a last-minute planner, you can also take advantage of certain last-minute travel deals.

Get in touch with nature

Camping is one of the least expensive vacations you can get your hands on. And camping doesn’t have to mean sleeping under the stars in the middle of a forest with no one around for miles. While that may sound like heaven to some, less experienced campers can visit fully-equipped campsites across the nation. Check out a site like KOA to find a destination that’s right for you.

SheKnows shares the top camping vacation destinations for families >>

Take a vacation without leaving town

Staycations are all the rage because you can enjoy a getaway without really having to spend the money to get away. A few caveats if you decide to take a staycation in your own city:

  • Make sure to commit to the vacation time as you would if you were really out of town.
  • Explore your city as a tourist. No doubt that wherever you live, there are great museums, activities and dining options that you’ve never tried. Now’s your chance to do it!

Read more on planning the perfect staycation in your city >>

More family vacation ideas

8 Budget-friendly family vacations
Tips for finding family travel deals
5 Easy family vacation ideas

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