7 Money Saving Hacks When Travelling With Children

The following post was contributed by a reader of The Practically Green Mom.

If you wait until your children graduate to go on vacation, you are likely to get a little crazy before then. Travelling makes for valuable family bonding time, and everyone can use a change of scenery once in a while. Travelling with children is always going to be a little more complicated and expensive than travelling alone, but it doesn’t need to feel impossible. Just change the way you plan and make a few extra considerations.

  1. Find Free Things to Do

Children have more of a concept of fun than they do of money. No matter where you go, there’s likely to be free (or cheap) things for your kids to do. Some destinations across the world have children’s museums, playgrounds, and even waterparks that are free. If you spend a few days devoted to these free activities, your budget will go much further.

  1. Buy Groceries

When you’re eating out, dinner for two every night can get really expensive. Dinner for four or more is almost astronomically pricey. When you get to your destination, find a grocery store. Stock up on staples (things like snacks and juice boxes) that you ordinarily go through quickly. Buying shelf stable things like peanut butter, bread, and fruit is always a good plan. You can pack picnic lunches for days where your family wants to explore nature.

  1. Economize on Accomodations

Fitting  your whole family in an entire hotel room can feel like a logistical nightmare. Because of this, you might opt for a suite. Accommodations become super expensive, especially if you’re going to be gone for a while. It might be more economically efficient to opt for a short term rental. You’ll have more space, and you won’t pay nearly as much. You might even be able to stay away for longer.

  1. Buy Reusable Containers

Think of all the toiletries and small things that your children will need to carry with them. Every time you travel, you need to buy more. Instead, buy everyone their own set of refillable bottles. Whenever you want to travel, you can pack from your supply at home and use the bottles indefinitely. It’s better for the planet, and it’s better for your budget in the long run.

  1. Book Your Flights in Advance

Almost every airline requires passengers over the age of 2 to have a full priced adult ticket. If you’re going somewhere you can’t reasonably access by land transportation, buy those plane tickets months in advance. Tickets are always at their cheapest when you book them far ahead of time. As the departure date grows closer, tickets might even double in price.

  1. Take Advantage of The Time They Sleep

No matter how you’re getting to your destination, it might be wise to plan your travel time for when your kids are asleep. You’d be surprised how much time and money this can save you. If you’re flying on a plane, it may not make a difference. If you’re going by car, you’ll find that you’ll be less likely to have to pull over for bathroom stops, snacks, or things to entertain your children when they get restless. You’ll get better gas mileage and spend less on impulse purchases along the way.

  1. Coupon Everywhere

Groupon and other sites like it exist in almost every country. No matter where you’re going, you’ll probably be able to find discounts on things like food and entertainment through couponing sites or apps. Try to make your plans around what discounts are available. You might even be able to find deals where kids eat free with the purchase of an adult meal.


While you might need a much larger budget and a much more flexible schedule to travel with your children, you won’t have to wait on a huge inheritance to be able to spend a week on the beach. If you’re thrifty and clever at home, you can be thrifty and clever anywhere.



About the Author:

Sienna Walker is a huge fan of travelling, both to well-known and famous places as well as to the ‘off the beaten path’ locations. Currently supporting Aubiz, Sienna might often be found online, sharing her tips and suggestions with readers. Feel free to follow her on @SiennaWalkerS.

Summer in Seattle – Day 3

Continued from Summer in Seattle – Day 2. All recommendations are based on my own experiences. No compensation was received.

Our last full day in Seattle was spent enjoying nature (the weather was perfect for this!), and exploring a couple of little towns outside of the city. Two girls in our group took a ferry to the San Juan Islands for some whale watching, which they loved (but it is COLD out there on the water so dress appropriately!) The rest of us hopped in the rental car and headed east.

Our first stop was the Japanese Garden at Washington Park Arboretum. I probably could have spent all day here just sitting in the peace and quiet. It was beautiful!

We were starting to get hungry, so it was off to Woodinville for some lunch at Teddy’s Bigger Burgers. (I had a veggie burger that was pretty good, and sweet potato fries that might be the best ones I’ve ever tasted!) But the main reason we went to Woodinville is because it’s wine country! There are no actual vineyards to walk through out there (they’re all about 2-3 hours south, I believe), but there are PLENTY of places to drink! We only went to one tasting at DeLille Cellars, though. (Cute little place, and the wine was great!) Being the last day of our trip, we were running out of money, so we decided to find some FREE things to do…

Just a ways up the road we ran into the Woodinville Lavender Farm. I have never seen lavender plants like this! Gorgeous! And the smell…ahhh!

Continuing with the botanical theme, our next stop was Bellevue Botanical Garden about 20 minutes away. Don’t be fooled by the fact that it currently looks like a construction site! There is a lot of beauty to be found behind those barriers! We saw so many wonderful plants and flowers that would never grow in my neck of the woods.

Snack time! Back to the city for some gourmet cheeses at The Calf and Kid! YUM YUM YUM! We split a cheese plate with some crackers and fig jelly…wow! Cheese will never be the same again…

Back to our condo for a little bit of downtime before dinner. We considered ordering in, but there was a cute little pizza place a few blocks away, so we decided to walk down there instead. (Less for us to clean up later, right?) If you’re ever in the Belltown area of Seattle, stop for a bite at Bambino’s Pizzeria. The pizza is great (and pretty reasonably priced!) They have an extensive drink menu, or if you’re not in the mood for alcohol…coke in glass bottles!! (Why does it taste better like that?!)

And that pretty much ends the highlights of my trip! Something tells me that a separate post about cleaning up the condo, packing, then sitting at the airport wouldn’t make for a good read! (Though, recycling is mandatory in the city of Seattle…let’s just say there was some trash digging involved…lol)


Seattle Day 3

: Summer in Seattle – Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 :

Summer in Seattle – Day 2

Continued from Summer in Seattle – Day 1. All recommendations are based on my own experiences. No compensation was received.

Saturday morning, our group split up. Two of the girls wanted to go exploring outside the city, and the rest of us were ready to hit the tourist spots with the least amount of walking required. Enter Ride the Ducks of Seattle! This 90 minute tour takes you through the highlights of Seattle (the waterfront, Pioneer Square, Pike Place Market, the downtown shopping district and Fremont), then drives right into Lake Union! Is it a van, a bus, a boat?! No one knows. But it was awesome! Our tour guide was fantastic! I highly HIGHLY recommend this. (Again, not getting paid to say that!)

Across the street from our duck tour drop-off was the EMP Museum. They currently have a Jimi Hendrix exhibit that one of the girls in our group wanted to see, and the rest of us were just excited that there was a restaurant inside, so we spent some time exploring that. In addition to Hendrix, they have a Women Who Rock exhibit, which I really liked.

Then, we were off to the Space Needle! Holy long lines in the heat! We waited at least an hour before we could go up, but it was totally worth it. I’m not a fan of heights, so I was a little nervous, but once you get up there it doesn’t seem like you’re over 600 feet off the ground, and the view is spectacular!

Seattle Day 2


: Summer in Seattle – Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 :

Summer in Seattle – Day 1

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you know that I was in Seattle for a girls weekend last week. These are the highlights of my trip! (Pictures or it didn’t happen, right?!) I’ve decided to split this into three posts, just because it’s going to be EPIC otherwise! **P.S. I am not receiving compensation for posting any of the following links – only sharing my experience!**

We all flew into Seattle on Friday morning, and while we were waiting to check into our condo, we explored the Pike Place Market. OMG – so much awesome! I had to take a picture of the original Starbucks, of course. (Forget going inside, though…the line was out the door and down the street!) We stopped at Pike Place Chowder for some lunch, followed by gelato at Bottega Italiana. A quick trip back to the market for some fresh fish and produce to prepare Saturday night’s dinner (we opted to actually make some use of the kitchen in our condo), and we were ready to get settled in to our home for the next few days.

If you ever visit the Seattle area, and need a bigger place to stay, check out Sea to Sky Rentals! They have several locations available to rent, but our party of five stayed in Centennial Tower. The location was FANTASTIC! I couldn’t get enough of the view! (It’s even more amazing at night!)

Once we got settled in, it was dinner time. We drove down to the pier for some yummy seafood at Elliot’s Oyster House. Luckily, we decided to spring for valet parking, because parking at the pier was a mess. Dinner ran pretty late (as you would expect on a Friday evening, so keep that in mind if you’re so hungry you could eat your arm!) Rather than ride the Ferris Wheel (not that I would have anyway – heights and I do not mix), we headed back to the condo to get some much needed sleep.

Seattle Day 1


: Summer in Seattle – Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 :

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