Ideas for cheap days out with the family

Cheap family days out: Things to do with the family without breaking the bank.

4 children with wellies on
Fun times with the family doesn't have to cost the world!

Having kids is expensive and trying to keep them entertained is getting more and more costly. We want to give our kids the best childhood possible, and this can lead us to spending a small fortune on a day out at a theme park or attraction. When you really think about it though, all your kids really need is you and your time. Assuming you can give them some of your time, then there are a load of different ways you can have a day out on the cheap. These can be just as fulfilling, if not more so, than a big jazzy day out.

Free things to do with the family

  1. Visit the beach

The UK has over 1,500 beaches to choose from and they are all free (minus the cost of parking). There isn't a kid in the world who doesn't love the beach. Building sand castles and paddling in the fresh sea is a right of passage. You can save even more by taking packed lunches and making it a picnic on the beach. You can search for a beach near you here.

Simpsons at the beach

2. Go to the woods

Pack some wellies and get out into nature. We have some glorious woods in this country and not only can it be a lot of fun for the kids, but it will be a natural stress reliever for you. Autumn is a good time to visit the woods, as the trees turn wonderful colours of orange and conkers are everywhere.

3. Museums

You can find museums everywhere and they are generally free admission. Have a think about what your children are really interested in. Is it cars, trains, space or dinosaurs? Matching the museum visit with the particular interests of your kids can really make it a special event for them and you.

5. Skimming stones

Who doesn't like to master skimming stones? Finding the perfect flat stone and seeing who can skim the furthest. My son adored throwing rocks into water in general, and I imagine this isn't isolated to just him. Maybe you don't know how to skim stones and the family can learn together!

6. Outdoor Lidos

Outdoors swimming is a lot of fun in the summer! Search for your nearest Lido and have a great time splashing in the sun.

7. Picnic in the park

You don't need to have an expensive restaurant meal for a change of scenery. Pack a delicious picnic with everyone's favourite sandwiches and snacks and go to the park. You can have fun playing in the park then get sat down for some delicious food.

8. Camp in the garden

No need for the excitement of a hotel. The adventure of camping in the garden could be enough for your little ones. Make a little den outside, with fairy lights and blankets. Read spooky stories or play games. The kids will love it.

Family camping

9. Feed the ducks

An all time classic. Pack up some seed or grapes and get to the park to feed the ducks. Remember that we shouldn't really feed ducks bread as it isn't actually good for them. Your kids will love watching the ducks scramble for the food and it doubles up as a nice walk in the park.

10.  Geocaching

A new craze. Use your phone GPS to hunt for a hidden treasure. It is a really fun adventure and super rewarding when you find the hidden item. Go to this site to get started.

Things to do with the family for under £30

  1. Mini golfing

A great way to spend a couple of hours. Suitable for all ages and skill levels it is such great fun for all the family and can really burn some competitive spirit.

2. Bowling

Bowling is great fun and again is suitable for everyone. All alleys now cater for younger children with bumpers by the gutter and ramps to help push the ball. Just be careful to avoid the arcades as they can drain your money before you even get to the main bowling event. Take your own sandwiches as snacks to avoid super expensive food at the lane.

3. Swimming

If a Lido is too cold, then indoor swimming is your best bet. It can be super cheap at your local leisure center and all kids love it. Most pools come with floaties for young children and kid's shallow pools.

Baby swimming in pool

4. Local farms

You may even find these ones free, but generally there is a low cost of entry. Seeing the farm yard animals is great for kids and sometimes in lambing season you can even get to feed the little lambs which is heart meltingly cute.

5. Cinema deals

Make use of some 2 for 1 vouchers or Meercat movies and take a cinema day out. Bring your own snacks. The popcorn is monumentally overpriced and can add up to £30 alone for a family of 4.

6. Restaurants where 'Kids eat free'

Loads of restuarants offer a kids eat free offer. This can really reduce the cost of eating out. You can find a list of these restaurants here.

Wanna know how much you spent on eating out in the last year? Use Rule's free tool to find out!

7. Zoo (with deals)

Most zoos run promotions and vouchers at certain times of the year. Just keep an eye out for when they do a 2 for 1 or free child entry offer. It can be an exciting and informative experience for kids and doesn't have to cost a fortune. Once again bring your own food to save on the overpriced snacks at the park.

Monkey clapping