Finding things to do for the kids over the Christmas break is sometimes difficult. Particularly if your budget is low.
Most advertised or popular activities come with a cost. Supervised activities will understandably come with an appropriate price tag and even traditional days out such as taking the family to the Zoo can quite simply be out of some people’s reach. At around $90 for a family of four some would say that if you’re there all day it can be considered quite reasonable but its really one of those activities most families need to budget for and work into the overall costs of their holiday spending. Just make sure to bring your own lunch as the extra costs with just a round of hot chips can quickly add up.
Like most things in life, holiday activities require an investment of either money or time. Even money for petrol for travelling to see the relatives over Christmas can come as a surprise if it’s not part of your financial plan.
Doing family activities such as planting a vegetable garden or a treasure hunt in the backyard requires the investment of your time but its time well spent. Daylight saving means that outdoor activities or even dinner picnics on the beach are possible for working parents and can be quite a stress reliever after a busy day. Getting fit with the kids may involve events such as Parkrun, which is a free weekend activity across many parts of the South Australia.
It is well worth checking out your local Library for holiday activities, depending on the age of your kids, as well as the Community Centres or even Church groups if you have a little faith. Finding things that are budget friendly generally means turning to a good old-fashioned smattering of public institutions such as museums and galleries or a visit to the various playgrounds. There are some amazing playgrounds such as in St Kilda and Noarlunga that can help wear the kids out well before nightfall and with a picnic lunch the best value. Make sure to pack the sunscreen.
There are also many sites online where you can get some great school holiday ideas such as:
As you would expect most of these sites have rather an Adelaide focus with little in the country areas listed but promised for the future. That’s where the local community groups are the best bet. Even ASIC's Money Smart has tips for cheap school holiday ideas but limited as you can imagine to mostly riding a bike or reading or walking on the beach or the local playground.
Mixing up your holiday fun between low cost activities and some budgeted extravagances can make for great all round Christmas breaks that are memorable. No matter how you look at it, it’s a time invested in your kids and you're family well-being. Getting to know the games they love the best and helped by budgeting in order to make those special one off events you can all share, more affordable and possible.