You’ve spent the last few weeks or months saving up for a few days away and you’re ready to drive, fly or sail away to that perfect destination but unless you have just won the lotto you probably won’t have a limitless pot of gold to take with you to spend. With a bit of planning and help from our tips below, you could make a small budget stretch even further.
Holiday spending can lead to a lot of impulse purchases. Creating a budget for each day of your holiday helps you make sure that you don’t spend more than you intend to.
To create a holiday budget planner; first write down the total budget for your trip. The next step is to create a list of possible expenses that you might incur during your trip. Here is a list of possible expenses that could be included in this:
This includes train and/or bus tickets, car expenses including petrol, tolls and parking and taxis.
This varies depending on what type of accommodation you decide to choose. Excluding amenities and room service, the expenses of hotels and guesthouses are generally only the fee of the room. However, there can be added charges in hostels, holiday homes, apartment rentals and campsites. For holiday homes and campervans don’t forget to factor in electricity expenses and fuel charges, if applicable. For campsites, it is best to ask the campsite you have chosen about these costs as each company is different but some expenses could include camping equipment.
Planning a budget for food is probably the trickiest to do. However, if you are going to eat out during your trip it is a good idea to search what is around the area you are going to stay in beforehand so you can have a few places in mind and within your budget. Alternatively you can pack lunches during the day to cut down the costs. Most hostels and campsites offer cooking facilities so you could even plan meal options in advance to cook during your holidays.
This can include toiletries, swimwear, camera, batteries, lock (for hostel lockers), towels, bed linen (for some hostels) or extra blankets (camping).
These could include tourist attractions that you wish to visit, pocket money for children, and events that may be on in the area.
Don’t forget to allow some extra money for unexpected expenses.
Types of Activities
Think about museums, parks and different forms of entertainment including outdoor activities like hiking and biking. It may be a good opportunity for you to try a new sport for the first time. If you are going abroad to an ‘all inclusive’ destination many hotels offer free equipment for guests to use.
Decide before you go which days are going to be ‘treat days’. That way you can plan your spending and look forward to doing something enjoyable that may cost a little more, such as a nice meal out.
Do some digging and find out what’s on locally that is free. This can include museums, parks and gardens. You may even find free events in parks with either a music, sporting or a craft theme.
Ask a Local
Talk to the local tourist offices. They are the best people to give you an overview of the highlights of the local area. Check out their website if they have one and also drop in for a visit as soon as you arrive. You could also look online to see if you could find vouchers or discounts for visiting local attractions.
Take a Break
Make some time to relax. You don’t have to do something big on every single day of your holiday. Try a big day out followed by a day or two of doing something very low key. You could bring games or download apps and movies to keep the kids entertained and have some family fun.
What can you bring from home?
See what you can bring from home on your trip. Dig out any sports or beach equipment you have and bring it with you in case there are opportunities to use it when you are away. This will save you having to buy new equipment when you are on your holiday and lets you get value out of what you already have.
Sometimes the perfect getaway can be only a stone’s throw away. Ireland has so much to offer and sometimes we can forget about this. One of the best things about not going abroad for your next trip is that you don’t have to spend a lot to have a great time. Another great reason to plan a trip here is you don’t have to worry about the stress of busy airports. Replace running to the gate with only a few minutes to boarding time, with relaxation on Irish rail gazing out at the beautiful country. If you decide to plan a holiday here this summer, we’ve come up with some tips to help you enjoy yourself without it costing you an arm and a leg.
Ireland is full of great things to do throughout the year. There are many festivals, events and attractions on all over the country. To check out what is on and where, you can find information on sites such as DiscoverIreland.ie and Lonely Planet.
If being outdoors is part of your holiday plan, another great site to check out is Coillte. They have a list of family cycling and walking trails around the country. The site is a good starting point for those who love to walk or cycle. If the weather is fine having a picnic can be an inexpensive and very enjoyable way to spend time outdoors.