We recently took a week off work and thought to save money we would go away camping for 3 nights and then spent the rest of the week catching up with friends and a couple of nights out. The cost of the campsite, food, petrol, dinners out, tickets to attractions etc has mounted up and I wonder if it really is cheaper to stay at home?
I think staying here can be cheaper if all costs are well-organised and planned around discounts and vouchers available. However, this takes some off the holidays excitement away as it stops you from being spontaneous to an extent.
However, there are cheap ways of travelling abroad too. For example, I have benefited in the past from ?4 return flights with everything included, when there has been ?2/each way flight offers, not having to pay for credit card fees if you have the right credit card, travelling with hand luggage only etc.
And before you buy this type of flight, you research the destination and look for cheap accommodation, which can be found, but it would certainly be more expensive than camping :)
Then what you can do when you are abroad is sightseeing mainly, which is free. And if you avoid eating out at restaurants there are always cheap ways to eat out too. I love buying cheese and salami with a freshly baked baguette in a supermarket when I go to France and prepare my own paninis :)
Organisation and planning is the key in all this, and to know where to search for ideas and deals.
Finally, another way to get a cheap holiday abroad, with pretty much everything included, is by taking advantage of the last-minute deals. There are some bargains there sometimes.
It will depend, petrol and campsite will always be cheaper than airfair and hotels, but if you would spend your holiday at the hotel making use of their facilities it may be cheaper than all the attraction tickets etc. If you would still go on trips and days out abroad it will cost you more.
Use this last camping trip as a reference, add up the total cost and then look at holiday prices online to see which will suit you best.
Travel is expensive by whatever means even if on so-called budget flights. Staying at home means no travel and accomodation costs, but eating out is expensive. There are a lot of voucher offers on at the moment for pizza/pasta-type restaurants and eating out at lunchtime rather than in the evening can be much cheaper (and feels like a luxury when everyone else is going back to work!)
Staying at home is definitely cheaper because there are a lot more add ons abroad and you don't know what everything costs. I've paid lots for food abroad because it's not clear where is good and/or cheap. Over here it's a lot easier to research costs of attractions, events, meals out etc and budget accordingly. We're having a holiday at home next week for my mum and dad's 60th birthdays and we've included an overnight stay in Liverpool with theatre tickets, a few meals out, 2 birthday cakes, ingredients for a home made afternoon tea and various smaller gifts and treats with a maximum budget of ?400. And I'm really excited about it! I love going abroad but there are lots of things I want to do in my region and even my town especially if it's with all of my family.
This is the same cost as a 6 night break in Florence I went on with my boyfriend last year, which was very cheap but we then spent another ?600 on food, travel and entertainment!!
I think it depends on what you do if you stay home. I think the camping alone might have been ok, but actually, when you start adding on the cost of meals out, possibly a cinema trip, tickets to attractions the cost is huge overall. You literally do have to stay home... and find activities that cost nothing. If you have kids that can be difficult!
Also, it depends what matters to you for your time off. If you look far enough in advance and shop around, you could probably find a holiday abroad, maybe even AI where you don't need to spend anything once you get there and you are more likely to get some better weather too (if the weather where I am is anything to go by!) I would take abroad every time :)
It depends on what you want for a hjoliday, if your happy to go somewhere for a week on a self catering basis and your good enough to cook your self instead of eating out all the time then that saves a fortune. We booked flights to a timeshare and the hidden baggage costs and travel insurance costs increased the flights dramatically.
Nic I'd be interested to know what you did end up spending on your weeks holiday here in the UK. I personally think you will have spent more than a holiday abroad. The problem in the UK is the weather and it is that much harder to take advantage of simple things like a walk on the beach or in the hills when it is pouring down, so abroad will always win hands down for me although we have holidayed here in the UK. Got a really good deal last year on the accommodation on along weekend away for myself and my daughter over the bank holiday weekend on a B&B basis. However, found I really spent a great deal on eating out and other attractions, and that was with some research before hand. I have just booked a holiday for us at the end of October to Portugal including flights (hand luggage only) and B&B accommodation at a highly recommended 3* plus hotel for just under ?200. Yes I will also have to factor in airport parking (?25 for the week) and transfers to and from the airport (?50 for private transfer) but overall I am really pleased with this and think I have got a good deal.
I go caravaning but bearing in mind the cost of insuring and storing the caravan plus the cost of fuel for wherever I go and the site fees, I don't think it is a particularly cheap option. However, I went for a week's holiday in Spain B&B in a very nice hotel but I think the whole week probably cost as much as I pay for a week caravaning plus the insurance and storage for a year. So if I use the caravan for more than one week then the holidays work out cheaper with just the weather being a variable.
I think you have to think how much you are going to use a caravan before you get one - and whether you are likely to enjoy it. It is probably a lot cheaper with children to stay at home than pay for them to go abroad but you have to be prepared to be involved and consider activities that are not going to cost you a fortune.
Staying at home isn't that much cheaper really, can get good deals if you book late on my parents went to Menorca for ?300 each and it was really nice apparently, quite expensive now in the UK and can never guarantee the weather but it depends what you want to do on your holiday :-)
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