Families are facing some really desperate times. Mom and dad are losing their jobs or are taking cuts in order to stay employed. The costs of feeding, clothing, and housing a family have nearly doubled over the last decade. Yeah, times are tough, but that is no excuse to let those vacation days slip by. During times like this, one may get the idea of taking a staycation instead of a proper vacation/holiday.
It’s true that some may not be able to afford that trip to Paris they’ve been dreaming of, but that does not mean staycation is the solution to get a break. One can afford to take their family on a vacation that doesn’t involve a Netflix marathon at a fancy hotel in the name of a Stay-cation instead of holiday.
Staycations can save people money, but so can being a savvy vacation planner. When you plan your vacation equipped with the right knowledge and a few well-placed clicks, you can afford to LEAVE and actually GO on a vacation.
What is a Staycation
Let’s tackle the question of what is a staycation first.
A staycation is a type of break or vacation you take by going to a fancy hotel in the city you live in. In a stay-cation you will not be travelling to a far off place. You simply leave your house and go to a hotel to stay there.
No need to clean, food is given by the hotel, swimming pool is available on premises and a complete break from house chores and travel. This works well for the home makers who are weary of house chores day and night. So a staycation acts as a nice break for them.
Cost: Staycation vs Holiday
When you compare staycation vs holiday, cost wise, staycations are more affordable as there is very little travel or sightseeing to be done.
Most staycations are in your city, so travel is minimal. There is also very little sightseeing as the sole purpose of taking one is to chill out. Food is mostly covered by the hotel. Most hotels provide for breakfast. If you book a staycation package such as the ones offered via CRED, you can even get all three meals covered by the hotel.
There is no hassle of flight tickets, fuel, tolls, entry fees etc that one needs to take care of in a vacation.
Alternative to Staycation
What do you think is the best alternative to a staycation? Well, it is a vacation of course! That is what we all were doing before the COVID pandemic hit us right?
There are a number of reasons why you should actually look at taking a vacation instead of lazily going for a staycation. If cost is the reason, then we have more for you. Read on for ideas and ways to take a vacation almost within a staycation budget.
Discount Vacation Sites
Because so many people are looking to save money on their vacations, low cost travel sites have begun popping up everywhere—saving people money on their vacations has become big business. The big names in discount travel sites come to mind when hopeful vacationers begin their cost search. Discount travel sites like Expedia, Makemytrip, Hotels.com, and Kayak offer their customers a lot of deals on hotels, airline tickets, and even tickets to destination attractions—sometimes they will offer package deals that can seem too good to be true. The truth is that they can offer these prices to their customers because airlines want to fill their seats, hotels want to fill their rooms, and area attractions are desperate for an influx of cash.
Also, smaller, less known discount travel sites like the ones that target specific areas might be able to offer better rates because they have less overhead and can therefore offer their customers better prices.
Sometimes the family vacation is put on hold because there just isn’t enough money in the budget to pay the skyrocketing costs of airfare. While fuel prices aren’t faring any better, you can at least hit the road and travel the same distance you would fly for half the cost.
If an airline ticket to cover 1500 km costs Rs.6500 for one person, that that is Rs.26,000 for a family of 4. The cost to drive the 1,500 km (with current petrol prices and a vehicle that gets 18 km/l) would be a much cheaper within Rs.10,000 including breaks, air and pit stops.
This is an incredibly affordable way to travel AND there aren’t annoying baggage fees. Another major benefit is, you have your own vehicle in the city you are taking a holiday in, so there is no need to book cabs or rent a car. Not to mention, road trips are fun!
Your family may not have the time to take vacation time. Even if you can get off of work for a week, your kids still have school, music classes, and friends they couldn’t possibly stay away from for more than two days. So, the simple solution is to take a weekend vacation. Taking a trip to a destination out of the country or even out of the state isn’t feasible because you’d spend more time traveling than relaxing.
Weekend getaways can be inexpensive if your know where to look for vacation planning. To find local or regional events to do over the weekend, just do a quick internet search and go from there. Once you find something you would love to do, you can book a room for one or two nights, fill up the gas tank, and leave the world behind for 48 hours. The truth is that many local or regional events are low cost because they are hosted by small time organizations who just want to provide a great family fun festivity.
For the adventurous family that loves to really leave it all behind, there is the concept of the family camping trip. Most campsites charge about Rs.2500 to Rs.6000($25 to $70 per site (if you are in the US and depending on hook ups). Not only do you get to go away on a budget, but can also commune with nature and have a great time laughing, telling stories, and meeting new people around a roaring fire.
Trekking, city walks, wine tasting, cycle tours are all inexpensive experiences that can be enjoyed together with your family. Klook is a great site where you can find deals for activities to the city you are visiting.
Even though most of us are dealing with a noticeable decrease in usable income these days, we can still have a vacation, away from home. We just have to know how to plan and where to look for the best deals.
Have you ever taken a staycation? Have you ever planned a vacation using a tight budget? Let us know how you did it!