Frugal Foodie Mama: The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation

Friday, June 3, 2016

The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation

From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation...
From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Scholastic. The opinions and text are all mine.

Another school year is quickly coming to a close, and soon the kiddos will be home for summer school break. Time for long summer days at the pool, s'mores around the fire pit, weekend road trips, and the annual summer family vacation. Okay, so maybe you hadn't really thought about that last bit quite yet. But there is no need to panic, folks. I gathered up some of the best resources for planning a summer family vacation to share with you all today. So whether you need a little help deciding where to go or maybe you just need some tips for the actual traveling part, I got covered in today's post!

Deciding Where to Go.
If you haven't already pinpointed just where you and the family will be packing up and heading off to this summer, then this is where you need to start. 
Now you can either close your eyes and throw a dart at a map (hey, I am not necessarily ruling that one out ;) ), or you can start by asking yourself a few key questions-

1. How many days do you have for your trip?
Determining just how many days you have to take a family vacation or getaway is key. If you only have 4 days or less, a road trip to a nearby area would make more sense for you and your family. You will want to rule out anywhere that you would have to fly to if you are short on vacation time since you could possibly spend 1-2 of those precious vacation days in airports depending on connecting flights and layovers.
2. What is your budget? 
Do the math and figure out just how much you have to spend on a family vacation this summer. Make sure to add in travel, accommodations, meals, activities & attractions, and gratuity for hospitality staff. We always add about an extra $100-200 of cushion money to our travel budget for a trip to cover unexpected expenses or to allow us to splurge on something spontaneous.
From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation.

3. How will you be getting there? Road trip? By plane? Catching a train?
If you have already answered questions #1 and #2, then you probably already have your answer to this one. ;) How much time you have available for your trip and your actual budget for the trip will definitely be the two biggest determining factors for how you and your family will arrive at your vacation destination.
4. What do you and your family ultimately want to get out of your vacation? 
Are you looking to go on an educational or historical themed trip that will extend upon what your kids have already learned in school or that they will be able to tie into next school year? Are you looking for a fun trip that will allow everyone to just cut loose and have a blast together? Or are you just wanting to hang out and relax? And there is no rule saying that you can't have it all in your summer family vacation, but deciding on which of these things is most important will really help you and your family narrow down your final summer travel destination.
From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation.
Ideas for Educational Family Vacations-
Make Smooth Sailing Out of Getting There.
From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation.

When it comes to traveling with kids- whether by car, plane, train, or boat- sometimes the actual getting there can be the hardest part. Your biggest defense against mid-flight or side of the road meltdowns? Being prepared! Here are some of the best resources for surviving road trips & flights, and keeping the kiddos busy & happy while on the go...

Saving Money During Your Family Vacation.
You have picked a travel destination, you have chosen your mode of transportation, and those bags are packed! Now let's talk a little about how you can save money once you get there. Of course, a little pre-planning is your greatest strategy for keeping your summer family vacation within budget. Sites like travelocity, Expedia, Groupon, and livingsocial are all great places to start. I also love this 3 School-Year Vacation Planning Tips article from Scholastic for some great money saving tips. They cover everything from under-the-radar travel destinations that offer big savings to hotel alternatives in this piece.
Here are a few other great resources for getting more bang from your buck while traveling with your family this summer...

From deciding where to go, how to get there, & how to get the most bang for your buck, here are The Best Resources for Planning a Summer Family Vacation.
Fun Ways to Preserve Those Summer Travel Memories.
I always think it is fun to relive those travel memories with your family, so after each family trip we try to create something that will preserve them with in a creative way- like a photo album or a fun DIY project. I love this Printable Trip Journal from Scholastic! The kiddos can fill out a page for each day of your summer family vacation, and then you can create a scrapbook complete with mementos and photos later with them. If you are planning a family beach trip this summer, be sure to gather sand and seashells while you are there. Bring your seaside treasures back home, and make this DIY Beach Themed Fairy Garden together.

Be sure to visit Scholastic's Can't Wait for School Break collection of resources for even more summer family vacation tips! :)

What is your #1 tip for planning the best summer family vacation?

Looking for even more family friendly travel tips & ideas? Then be sure to follow my Family Friendly Travel board on Pinterest... 

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Scholastic. The opinions and text are all mine.