5 Ways To Save Money On Days Out With The Kids
I love nothing more than getting outdoors with my lot but we all know it doesn't come cheap.
Even a trip to the park can become costly with petrol and, of course, snacks so here are some of the things I do as a mother of four to try to keep the costs down and get the most out of our budget, especially now that the colder months are upon us.
1. Bring snack, drinks and a flask
I never leave our house without little snack packs for the kids. It could be an apple, a sandwich and a small snack along with their lunch bottle filled with some diluted orange or blackcurrant or thereabouts. The days I happen to forget them, we could spend up to €30 in little cafes or in a garage just to keep them fueled. Same goes for the adults, I also bring a flask of coffee for myself and my partner. Not only does it save disposable cups going to landfill, but it also saves us a few pennies on our random days out too.
2. Sign up to newsletters
Last year we signed up to all the website newsletters of our favourite places to visit so when they are having special offers or discounts I get an email about it right away and can book accordingly. We also use sites like Pigsback, Living Social and Groupon for deals on days out across Ireland. I print them off and keep them in one little folder alongside coupons and the likes. It is always handy to keep an eye on your favourite activities around Black Friday too. Some places do exclusive family ticket year-round membership and you can save an absolute fortune.
3. Use your rewards
A super savvy way to get discounted days out is with reward cards. For example with Tesco you can save up your points and exchange them for vouchers to visit places like Dublin Zoo, National Wax Museum, Sea Life Bray and Leisure Plex. It's a no-brainer and a super easy way to get out and active with the smallies for little or nothing.
4. Book Online
When possible we always try to book online in advance. Most places like the circus offer discounted rates if you book ahead of your visit and these days you do not need to print off the tickets, just show them to the attendant on your phone when you arrive. So not only does it save on paper, it will save you a euro or two. We also love the cinema but as a family of six, we opt for the kid's clubs where prices start as little as €2 in some places.
5. Make the most of free place
It is always good to mix things up a little. For example, certain OPW managed sites open for free on the first Wednesday of every month. We also love using this app for finding local playgrounds and we always keep an eye on Facebook groups and event listing for free festivals and events local enough to us. You would be surprised some of the little gems you will find.
OPW managed sites link - http://www.familyfriendlyhq.ie/family-blog/free-day-out-anyone-certain-heritage-sites-are-free-to-visit-on-the-first-wednesday-of-the-month
Kellie Kearney is a Dublin mammy of kids aged 2, 3, 4 and 8. A self-confessed procrastinator and picker-upper of things, Kellie's love includes coffee, doughnuts, travel and sharing every day true to life moments on Instagram of her growing family. Follow her on www.instagram.com/mylittlebabog.