Frugal Activities & Travel Ideas to Keep Kids Busy This Summer! by Elisa Schmitz
We had a great #30Seconds Twitter chat about economical ideas to keep kids busy this summer. Our featured subject matter expert was Holly Budde, a rock star 30Seconds contributor and mom of two daughters. Check her out on Twitter and on her blog to get even more great ideas! Below is the Q&A we did with Holly, which includes lots of great tips. Many others also contributed their ideas. To be a part of our weekly Twitter chats, join us each Wednesday night at 8 p.m. CT/9 p.m. ET at the Twitter hashtag #30Seconds. We’ll be there for an hour talking about a certain topic each week, and then usually for another hour for the “after-party!” So if you missed us this week, be sure to join us next week, and every week after for lots of info, sharing and fun!
Q: Budgets are tight these days! What are some frugal activities to keep kids busy and happy during summer break?
A: You can find local day camps for sports/dance/art that r relatively inexpensive and offer full/part time schedules.
A: Many stores have activities where kids can paint/bake/make crafts for free while you shop or for a small fee for mini-camps.
A: For cost of library membership, have child join local library’s book club for fun and to keep learning on his/her mind!
A: Many churches often have “Vacation Bible School” and kids’ day camps for little or no fee.
Q: All great ideas! Tell us, do you have plans for your kids’ summer activities already?
A: Yes, this summer my little one is taking dance and my oldest will go to soccer camp.
A: My kids love to swim, so we plan to go to the waterpark/pool often. Don’t forget to look for special deals during off-peak hours.
A: We also take day trips to local museums, zoo and parks. Make it a special adventure by taking the train and check online for specials!
Q: Many families take advantage of time off school for road trips. Any tips 4 happy car travel with kids?
A: 4 long/short trips, my kids each pack one backpack w/toys, books, etc! It’s key for them to help choose what to bring!
A: Vacation or stay-cation, I get my kids involved in making some decisions (where 2eat, stay). They take turns and it’s fun!
A: Turn longer car rides w/the kids into a scavenger hunt! Have them make their own lists of fun things to search for!
Q: When going on vacation, do you plan separate activities 4 kids/parents?
A: Absolutely! Adult only/kid only time is important! I include them in researching activities, it’s less stress for me.
A: Many hotels offer supervised activities for kids for free so parents get a break! They may offer in room babysitting for a fee, too.
A: Our family likes to #travel to places that are exciting 4 parents & kids! Theme parks and beaches are fun for entire family!
Q: What about when the day isn’t planned, what do your kids do to occupy themselves?
A: I schedule downtime for my kids. I believe it’s essential to just “play” with friends and use imagination!
A: When I’m working at home, I often recruit my kids as “interns” and get them involved in my work!
A: As a WAHM, it’s important I have dedicated work time. Kids have daily chores and we stay on routine while I work.
Q: What about when kids r attending “Camp Mom” for summer? Any tips 4 activities moms can do at home to entertain kids?
A: Think about activities they would do if they went to camp and try that! Let em have a splash day/waterplay and picnic in yard.
A: Have a neighborhood scavenger hunt/nature walk. Take pictures of interesting things they find so they can research!
A: Encourage older kids to start a business like babysitting, dog walking! Encourage good saving/spending habits early!