We all know holidaying abroad or even in this country isn’t cheap. If you’re a family that is always feeling the pinch, finding spare pennies to spend on leisure is tough and that is definitely how we often feel in our household.
We took our only son on his first holiday aboard in May. We choose May because we didn’t want the weather to be scorching hot for him (he was 22 months) but with his 2nd birthday coming up in June it meant we wouldn’t have to pay for him! Big saving already!
Now we’re in August, everyone around us seems to be going away somewhere beautiful and hot and we’d taken a week off work to spend some family time at home. It’s easy to think a ‘week at home’ won’t cost a penny but that really isn’t true. There aren’t a lot of ‘free’ days out there but if you plan ahead you can definitely cut corners. And that’s what we did!
We had a fantastic day at Longleat Safari and Adventure Park at the start of our week. If you haven’t been it really is something that the whole family, of all ages will enjoy. It’s not a cheap day out by no means but you can save money by ordering tickets online or if you shop with Tesco’s (like we do) you can exchange your Clubcard vouchers for days outs. It cost just £16 in vouchers for 2 adults (under 3’s are free) saving us £58!
We had a few odd jobs to get done at home and a trip to Ikea Southampton was needed. We love eating out, and when the bill for 2 cooked breakfasts and 2 hot drinks comes to £4 we love it even more! Their café is perfect for kids with a play centre in the middle with seating all the way round the edge so you watch your little ones while you enjoy some good food.
Next was a day out at Butlins in Bognor Regis. We know of friends with children who have holidayed here and had such fun so wanted to try it out for ourselves but just for the day! A day pass for an adult is £25 but we found a 25% off voucher meaning we paid £18 per adult, which is a little less painful on the pocket. Entrance is from 10am-8pm and there is easily plenty for the family to enjoy and with the weather in Britain being so unpredictable it doesn’t matter if you go on a wet day as there is so much to do indoors. The shows really made our day and definitely were the highlight – along with meeting Mike the Knight and turning our son in to a little tiger when he had his face painted.
To finish off a busy week we took a trip to Paulton’s Park. We live just 10 minutes from the park so have season tickets so the day didn’t cost us a penny.
We stocked up on a picnic food at the beginning of the week so we wouldn’t need to buy food on any of our days out. You could spend a fortune eating at these sorts of parks and who doesn’t love some picnic treats?
All in all we’ve had a lovey week together, taking a break from our routine and spending some family time. But now it’s back to reality and we’ll be busy, busy, busy over the next few weeks organising our next Market at the Littledown Centre on 16th September. We’re also on the hunt for new Organiser to join us and run markets across Dorset. For more details email firstname.lastname@example.org