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How do you budget for school holidays?

by Ivana Katz (follow)
Ivana is passionate about travel, writing, photography and website design. Visit her at: www.adventurehq.com.au
Parenting (216)      Finance (24)      Budget (15)      School Holidays (7)     
School holidays roll around so quickly and if you are not prepared, your normal budget can get blown out very quickly.

school holidays, budget, free school holiday activities

With more and more businesses offering exciting and fun activities for kids during the holidays, it's easy to spend a lot of money.

How do you budget for the school holidays? Or do you even worry about a budget? Can you suggest some fun free things to do during school holidays? Have you found any good resources that can help with planning school holiday activities?

#School Holidays
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For starters, create a 'school holidays' savings account, and set your budget. Work out how much you need to save every week, and allocate those funds accordingly, without any emotion involved. A high interest account would be a plus. Allow a buffer of extra cash, just in case any unexpected expenses arise. You'll know why. "Mum can I get this?"
Make use of things that are offered free during the school holidays. Shopping centres, hardware stores, museums, art galleries and most major city centres put on free activities for kids during the holidays. To bulk up the things-to-list, you can add free outings like going to beaches and parks or visiting a friends house for a play. Don't forget the kids also need time to stay home and chill. So a pyjama day or a bedroom cleaning day is always good too.
There are many facilities that offer free activities during school holidays like shopping malls and Bunnings. You can schedule these in during the holiday just to keep you on track budget wise!
I plan the holidays by keeping an eye out in advance for any specials offered by discount websites. If we get a great deal, we plan our outing around it. If we don't then we explore places locally, and weekendnotes always had great ideas to plan day trips.
Throughout the year I pull 10% of our income into a high interest savings account which we can access at Christmas time. I've also tried to make sure that quarterly and annual bills don't arrive during the Christmas holidays so that there are no big bills to pay at this time.
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