While having a baby is an amazing adventure in itself, sometimes you just need to take a family getaway. Family vacations can help us to stay sane with all of the changes after baby's arrival. Traveling with a baby is really possible, you just need to travel differently.
Affordable Family Vacation Ideas With Baby
Certainly, sticking to a budget is important, even now more than ever. These affordable family vacation ideas with baby in tow will have you ready to hit the road on a family adventure in no time.
Explore our National Parks
We are blessed to be surrounded by preserved natural beauty throughout the United States. Our National Park service is home to more than 400 parks around our great nation, all of them teeming with priceless and panoramic landscapes.
Put your baby in a carrier and venture away from the gadgets and into the great wild open. When our first born son (now 15) was just two weeks old, we headed on a road trip to Zion National Park and even traversed a small hike. No, we didn't camp. We chose a local boutique hotel and after the days exploring red rock canyons, we spent time dipping baby's feet in the pool, and resting ours.
Babies love being outdoors and you'll love seeing the excitement in their eyes as they investigate the glory of their surroundings. Exploring nature is also an excellent way to engage older siblings, especially with Junior Ranger badge activities available through the park service.
Best of all, you can buy the annual pass and save a ton on multiple National Park visits. At least four days out of the year, all the National Parks offer free admission. Now that's budget friendly. Go ahead, #FindYourPark
Discount Travel Clubs
One of the biggest costs when keeping a family vacation affordable with baby is grabbing great deals on lodging rates. Being a member of your favorite hotel chain's rewards program may offer discounted lodging rates. Sometimes, you can find lower rates through your AAA or wholesale club membership or by spending countless hours scouring the internet on different booking engines like Expedia, Hotwire or Priceline.
Luckily, there's a better way to go easy on the budget when booking your lodging. GoJoinGo is a travel membership club which allows its members access to save money through incredibly discounted wholesale rates that can even seem too good to be true. But trust me, they're not.
Try GoJoinGO on a seven day free trial to see for yourself. They have access to special unpublished rates which aren't available to the public at over 800,000 hotels internationally. When you book just one night of travel, you'll most likely save more than your entire year's membership cost of $99. And, if you use the coupon code GO and the links on this post, you'll save an additional $25 on your annual discount travel membership.
On a quick search for exactly the same rooms, dates, and occupancy near Zion National Park, I found the SAME hotels on GoJoinGo for up to 42% LESS!
(low rates on GoJoinGo above)
(same hotel rates on Expedia, much higher)
Staycation in Your Own or Neighboring County
One of the best ways to take an affordable family vacation with baby is to stay close to home. Not only will you save on airfare or road trip expenses, you'll gain a whole new appreciation for exploring in your own community.
When I advise families to take a staycation, I always mention checking into vacation rentals. We love renting quaint cottages or charming condos and feeling like we have a home away from home. This is an especially cost-effective way to travel with a baby, as preparing meals on vacation can be a big money saver.
Once you've located a couple vacation rentals close to home (maybe within an hour or two drive,) read all the reviews from other families. Then, reach out to the owner to ask any questions you may have.
Also, consider negotiating for a better price if it's a last minute booking. I know from being a vacation rental owner myself that I'd rather take a bit lower rate than have our property sit empty.
Another way to make the most of a staycation is to contact the tourism board or convention and visitor's bureau for the appropriate county. Ask them for any local specials on attractions, and tell them you want to see your county in a new light, as if you were a tourist. The CVB is sure to direct you to the highlights of your area, possibly share some discount coupons, and you may even discover something new!
Travel with Baby Can Be Affordable
However you decide to head out with baby on vacation, it can be affordable. Most importantly, it will be memorable. And trust me, memories and grace are what will sustain every parenting moment ahead on your greatest adventure: family.
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