Budget family holidays: Majorca and beyond!

This is a collaborative post.

budget holidays

A family holiday at home or abroad can be such a wonderful experience. The opportunity to relax and spend quality time together is precious when life can be so busy and stressful. However, vacations also often come with a hefty price tag. Flights to your destination, accommodation, food and spending money can soon add up to make a family holiday unaffordable for many people. So how can you have budget family holidays that won’t break the bank?

How to have budget family holidays

We love to travel but we never spend a fortune when we holiday. There are lots of options for budget family holidays that mean you can treat your family. I have tried all of the following at various points in my life.


You do have the initial investment in the equipment when you start camping, but after that you are good to go. My daughters loved the freedom of camping as children, but went off it as teenagers when there was nowhere to plug in their straighteners and hardly any Wi-Fi signal!

House swaps

We had some extremely interesting holidays swapping houses with families from France and Spain. You can find more information here.

Go self catered

It definitely saves you money to go on a self-catering holiday. We did this on our recent trip to Wales. OK, you do need to cook and wash up, but we kept our meals very simple. We treated ourselves to things we wouldn’t normally buy much. Mr S loves a good steak or a lamb chop and I enjoy a really fresh piece of salmon. Kids will happily eat pasta and sauce or pizza wherever they are. Much cheaper than eating out!

Youth hostels

Think youth hostels are just for backpackers? That’s no longer the case. It is possible to book family rooms in youth hostels all over the world. You can find more information here.


If money is really tight, plan a staycation. Treat yourselves to trips to your nearest theme park or the zoo, a day at the beach or a picnic in the woods. Visit the cinema or go to local galleries and museums. You will be surprised at the tourist attractions on your doorstep.

Last minute deals

If you can hold your nerve, you can often get some fantastic last minute deals. I have to say, I wouldn’t have done this with small children but it could work with adventurous teens! Holiday Gems has a range of super value holidays for those who can travel at the last minute.

Saving money on holiday

Here are some other ideas to stretch your holiday funds whilst you are away:

Buy supermarket sun cream before you go.

Find the local supermarket for ingredients and pack a picnic for your days out.

Always take water and drinks out with you.

Research attractions in advance to find discount codes. Often if you prebook, tickets are cheaper.

Hit the library for books before you depart rather than buying them.

Take some small games to keep the kids occupied whilst travelling.

Stock up on cheap magazines from your local market stall to read round the pool.

Going abroad

We may have had a heatwave in the UK this year, but we can’t usually guarantee the sunshine. Sometimes we just want a sandy beach, blue skies and warm, clear seas. Last year we found a great deal and travelled all-inclusive to Majorca. We loved this beautiful, sunny island and plan to go again.

Another place I am desperate to visit is Kefalonia in Greece. Its mix of mountains, beaches and olive groves, not to mention its relaxed atmosphere and slow pace of life, look just the thing for a frazzled office worker.

I’m quite impressed by the range and pricing at Holiday Gems. They specialise in holiday destinations closer to home at affordable prices so are worth a look if you want a budget holiday.

Do you ever have budget family holidays? How do you achieve this and what are your favourite destinations?

4 thoughts on “Budget family holidays: Majorca and beyond!

  1. As always, lots of good tips for budget breaks, Jane.
    We live in a holiday resort so don’t feel the need quite as much as others to ‘get away’ to somewhere different. We have beaches coming out of our ears almost, and moorland only a few miles away, the best of both worlds.
    Holiday house swaps are a great way of having budget holidays, but bear in mind that you have to prepared your house for the incoming family, so there might be a tad more housework just when you are winding down for your holiday, so to speak. Getting beds made up for the incoming family on the morning when you depart, making sure the house is spotlessly clean, spaces in the wardrobes and drawers, and any tatty kitchen equipment, such as washing up bowls and tea towels, replaced. We used to do house swaps and I took advantage of this as an incentive to spring clean the house before we went away – and the incoming family always cared for our home, too.
    Margaret P

  2. We always went self catering when the kids were with us. Then later the two of us had holidays in our mini bus converted to a camper van by db. As he’s disabled n poorly now we just do self catering not too far away. I went to Scotland last year alone staying in a bunk house and mainly eating yellow sticker meals from the local co-op. I walked a lot, had treats from the local bakery, spent on a boat trip and ranger guided walk and a meal out when it was raining. I went by train and got a great deal booking early. It was a great holiday! I also do days out using my bus pass and taking my own food and water.

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