It was a Catch-22 situation. The COVID-19 pandemic and all the stress that brought about made us in need of a holiday, but because of the pandemic, travel was restricted and we were barely allowed to leave our houses, let alone fly off to find solace on a beach.
Still, restrictions are now easing (hooray) and we can think about going on holiday again.
Although a few weeks in the Seychelles might be just the thing to ease the stresses of the last year, your budget may not stretch that far.
But even though throwing a spare pair of jeans and a tshirt into a bag and finding cheap hostels as you backpack your way around Europe may be more within your means, you were probably hoping for a bit more comfort.
So, how can you go on holiday without selling either your house or your first born? Here are a few options.
Be flexible with times and dates
If you’ve got your heart set on going abroad, you can save an absolute fortune if you’re flexible about the date you go away or the time you travel. If you’re not dictated to by term times because you have children or you work at a school, book your holiday at off-peak times and you’ll save £100s.
Also, you may not be an early riser but if you can force yourself to set your alarm and get up in the early hours, an early flight or seat on Eurostar will also be a huge money-saver.
Go wild in the country
If you’re not fussed about going abroad and you love the outdoors, camping is for you. If you don’t want to be completely cut off from civilisation, you’ll find campsites with home comforts such as showers and shops.
For a real cost-effective camping experience, consider wild camping. Wild camping is where you just turn up somewhere with your tent and pitch it for the night. As free and liberating as this sounds, there are actually some restrictions on wild camping and this article sets them out.
Buy a holiday home
Although your idea of a holiday home might be a seven-bedroomed villa in Spain with your own private pool and a butler to bring you tapas whenever you feel peckish, that doesn’t quite come under the remit of an article on budget holidays.
You can have your own holiday home in the UK though if you buy a static caravan or lodge (such as these ones from Sunrise Holiday Homes). Holiday parks have everything you need on site and if you don’t fancy going to the same place each year for your holiday, you can rent your caravan out and use the rent money to go somewhere else for a change of scenery.
If you have a house in London and your friend has a house by the sea, why not suggest a swap for a week? Your friend gets to have a week in the big city taking in the sights and the West End shows and you get a week by the sea, breathing in some fresh air for a change.
Or perhaps you’ve got a friend who’s going on holiday and needs someone to look after their dog/cat/goldfish? Offer to house sit for them while they’re away. Even if they live somewhere that’s not usually at the top of the list of holiday destinations, every town has its good points and you’ll get a break and a new place to explore.
Going on holiday can be expensive – there’s the flights, travel insurance and hotels to budget for, as well as your spending money. Even if you don’t go abroad, hotels, meals and transport all add up wherever you go. The tips above show you just a few ways how you can still have a break without breaking the bank.