As much as you love spending time with your kids, being able to plan a getaway without them is welcomed. It’s some much-needed time to just let loose, explore, relax, and enjoy yourself without having to worry about your children. Due to lack of time and limited funds, however, this only happens once in a blue moon for many parents. That’s why when you do get the opportunity to leave the kids at home and travel, you should take full advantage of it.
If you’re used to planning family vacations or haven’t been on an outing without the kids in a while, you probably have no idea on how to plan the perfect getaway. Fortunately, these planning tips will make things a lot easier.
Create a Budget
Any vacation plans should start with a travel budget. You don’t want to get away and then return with a bunch of debt and unpaid bills or it defeats the purpose. So, start by figuring out how much you have to spend. Once you know how much you can afford to spend on a trip, you can start writing down common travel expenses and setting limits on what you can afford in each category. This would include things like your transportation costs, hotel stay, food, entertainment, and, of course, don’t forget to factor in some cash to care for your kids.
You don’t have to travel to some far-off destination to have a great time without your kids. As much as you love them, spending time anywhere without the kids can be a vacation. So, if your budget isn’t the largest, consider staying somewhere local. You could even spend the weekend in a hotel just a few short miles away from your house. Take the time to enjoy the hotel services and amenities and explore your city as a tourist would.
Ask a Friend or Relative to Watch the Kids
Do you want to save a ton of money on childcare for your getaway from the kids? It’s best to rely on your friends or relatives to watch them while you’re away. They often won’t charge you to do this and it is where your children will feel the safest. You do, however, need to find out what they may need funds to keep them entertained and comfortable.
Look for Deals on Entertainment
Of course, you’re going to want to keep yourself entertained while away on vacation, but popular events and attractions can be expensive. To stay on budget, it’s recommended that you do your research in advance to find savings on attractions, events, or activities you’d like to try on your trip. Whether you want to go on a tequila tour in San Diego or catch the latest Broadway musical in New York, there are websites that post coupons, codes, and promotional offers to get you in for less than you’d pay in person.
There are also free events that you could attend. From outdoor concerts and street fairs to museum exhibits and main attractions, check the official city page of wherever you’re traveling to to learn about things going on for free.
Reserve and Pack
All that’s left to do now is make your travel reservations and pack your things. You know about the obvious things to take along with you like clothes and shoes, but be sure to consider the type of trip you’re going on. If you’re going on that tequila tour and plan on drinking the night away, for example, you don’t want the rest of your trip to be plagued by a hangover. Since you don’t know how long can a hangover last, it would be best to pack something to help you cope. On the other hand, if you’re going on to the beach you’d want to remember to pack your swimwear and sunscreen. Make a list of what you need and check each item off as you pack.
Sure, you enjoy your family vacations, but if you’re like most parents, chances are, it’s been a while since you left the kids home. Don’t let things like lack of money or limited time keep you from getting out there and enjoying yourself on occasion. Ask a family member to watch the kids and use the budget-friendly tips above to plan a kid-free getaway that doesn’t break the bank.
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