Family Non-Travel: Staycation Ideas
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If you are looking for some family staycation ideas here are some ideas for family staycations for Christmas Break, Summer Break, Spring Break, Thanksgiving Break, and more. Whether you need to stay in town due to your family budget, or you want to stay in your city rather than travel, look at these staycation ideas with kids.
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Family Non-Travel: Staycation Ideas for Families for Winter, Spring, or Summer Break
During the long school breaks, parents and kids can get antsy staying at home. Instead of taking an expensive vacation, consider a more budget-friendly staycation.
Skip the stress, the lines at the airport, the long hours in the car, and huge expenses. Go on a family staycation to save money and reduce stress. Whether you want to or need to stay at home, here are some family budget-friendly staycation ideas for families.
How to Save Money on a Frugal Family Staycation
Gather a bunch of friends for group discounts. Whenever you can, bring your own food and drinks. The markup on these is ridiculous.
Have a Spa Day with the Family
Go to a spa or make your own spa at home. Or, buy a bunch of cheap beauty products on Amazon to paint nails, apply makeup, and give facials.
Get Your Hands Dirty
Create something. For your staycation, find a new recipe or fun craft. Play with your food, paint cardboard boxes to create forts, make jewelry, or decorate something. You can even make ice cream.
Get inspiration from these 40 Indoor Craft Ideas. ALEX toys has an assortment of craft kits that got great reviews.
Camp at Home
You don’t have to go far to go camping. Use your imagination and camp out in your backyard or even in your living room.
Pitch a tent in the yard, or make a blanket fort in your game room. Roast marshmallows or bake s’mores in your kitchen. For even more fun, grab a flashlight and tell ghost stories or sing songs.
For another staycation idea, explore the outdoors. Go to your local park or find a new-to-you park near you. For fun, try a new activity. Go fishing with your favorite Musky Rods and baitcasting reels.
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Or go hiking, biking, running, and more. Pack a picnic lunch and plenty of water.
Make it a Family Movie Day (or Night)
Depending on your budget, you can go to the movies or bring the movies to you. Get a free trial of Amazon Prime to stream free or cheap movies. There’s also Redbox, Hulu, or your local library. Wear pajamas, pop some popcorn, and snuggle with the family.
Root, Root, Root for the Home Team
Baseball fans can go to a home game or bring the game to you. Check to see when your major league or minor league baseball team has home games.
If you prefer, watch the games at home. If there are not games on network TV, you can watch baseball at home with Roku and MLB.TV. Then, put on your baseball jersey, make some hotdogs, and bring over the peanuts.
A Staycation Cool Off (During the Summer)
If you have lakes, pools, or waterparks near you, those are great ways to cool off and help the kids burn off some energy. Lakes and pools are mostly free or cheap. I can usually find coupons and deals for Schlitterbahn, a water park near us.
At home, make your own water park with sprinklers, slip n slides, and other discounted water toys. You could even have a water balloon fight during your summer staycation.
Do Something Good for Others During Your Staycation
Help teach your kids the value of helping others during your summer staycation. Show them how wonderful it can be to volunteer and help others in need.
Some examples include bringing cookies and visiting with residents of the nursing home, help at the food bank, clean up the park, help out at the animal shelter. Search for volunteer opportunities for kids within your city.
For our city, I did a quick Google search and found this List of Family Friendly Volunteer Activities in Austin.
Be a Tourist in Your Own City
As another family-friendly staycation idea, be a tourist in your own city! Check Groupon, Pogo Pass, and Go City Cards for deals on attractions in your city.
Trip Advisor has great recommendations for touristy things to do. If you are really want to feel like a tourist, find cheap hotel reservations from hotels.com, Priceline, or Travelocity. Score extra points with the family if you can find a hotel with a pool, beach, or entertainment.
Use Public Transportation for a Family Fun Staycation
For some reason, kids find buses, trains, and subways fascinating. Luckily, these are relatively cheap entertainment. For example, a day pass on Capitol Metro is only $2.50.
Take the public bus downtown or ride the train to the airport and back.
Be a Star(gazer)
From home or a local observatory, search the night sky for planets, constellations, and even shooting stars. If you plan to have a home star parties, then check out these 10 Free Astronomy Apps for Stargazing.
Go on a Scavenger Hunt
Create your own scavenger hunt or use some of these 32 Kids Scavenger Hunt Ideas or 30+ Free Printable Scavenger Hunts for Kids. If you are adventurous, then try Geocaching.
These are just a few ideas of budget-friendly family staycations during summer break. Remember to plan ahead and look for coupons or deals to save even more on your summer staycation.
Rachel is an Austin blogger, educator, mom, wife, young breast cancer survivor writing about health, saving money, and living a happy life in Austin, Texas.
Rachel has written for HuffPost and Hometalk and has been featured on KXAN, Studio 512, Fox 7 Austin, and CBS Austin.