For obvious reasons, staycations have risen well beyond anyone’s wildest expectations over the last couple of years. Unfortunately, as with any supply and demand curve, prices can quickly get out of control.
In fact, it’s not been unheard of for some staycations to be more expensive than a sun, sea and sand getaway across the continent. Of course, it doesn’t always have to be like this. With some shrewd planning, there are some ways to make a staycation a little more cost-efficient, which is where today’s article comes into play.
The school holiday rules still apply
Just because you’re not jetting off to the other side of the world, it doesn’t mean to say that the unofficial rules regarding school holiday travel don’t exist. In other words, if you’re thinking of travelling out of term time, there’s every chance that you’ll have to pay handsomely for the privilege.
Unfortunately, there’s little you can do about this, apart from playing with your dates to try and find the cheapest combination. Quite often, heading for a “non-standard duration” (such as six days) might be the key to unlocking deals during this period.
Think about the big picture when booking accommodation
Just as with a traditional holiday, it’s important to think about the bigger picture when booking accommodation for a staycation. Try and look out for package deals that might include extras such as breakfast or parking. Bundling everything together can often work out cheaper in the long run.
Then, there’s the location factor. Let’s take a classic example; Legoland. Most people heading there will book a hotel in London, without realizing that nearby areas such as Bracknell will offer far better value for money and also happen to be closer.
Think about the attractions you’re visiting and how your hotel will cater for these needs.
Never pay full price for attractions
This is a golden rule which should be applied to any type of holiday, and it’s especially pertinent for staycations. Just because an attraction is close to home, it doesn’t mean that you have to pay through the roof for a ticket.
In fact, there are often some great deals to be had, especially if you’re prepared to book in advance or purchase a family ticket. More often than not, the on-the-door price is grossly overpriced. By booking online or finding the classic 2-4-1 vouchers that are commonly found on cereal packets and similar items, you’ll be able to slash your cost of visiting attractions significantly.
The cost of dining out
While much is made of the cost of accommodation, something that often slips under the radar is the cost of dining out.
Particularly if you are travelling with the family, this can escalate quickly.
While cooking on holiday probably isn’t your idea of fun, it can be a way to shave significant sums from your staycation. Sometimes, it might be as simple as making sandwiches ahead of a day out. In other words, you don’t have to cook gourmet-style – just think of small hacks that can eliminate those big restaurant costs throughout the trip.