School holiday fun without the financial fright

School holiday fun without the financial fright

School holidays are a lot of fun - but entertaining your kids can be an expensive business, particularly if the weather goes south and you’re forced inside. Here are some suggested activities to try and keep everyone happy - without completely emptying your wallet.

Turn screen time into shared time

Managing kids’ screen time can be challenge these days especially when the dreaded “I’m bored” kicks in. Instead of plonking themselves in front of a game, use some of the other features of your phone or tablet for fun, group activities.

  • Put on the kids' favourite song and film a music video.

  • Create a short film from a scene from a favourite movie or book or even have them write their own.

  • Record some everyday sounds, or take photos of everyday things from odd angles and get the kids to identify what they’re seeing or hearing.

  • Create a scavenger hunt list of things to find during a walk in the park, and have them take photos of each item as they see it.


Stage a movie day at home

Instead of a trip to the cinema, which can get pricey, why not stage a movie day at home? Invite some friends and tell everyone to bring a DVD, or cue up some kid-friendly movies on your streaming service. Pop some popcorn and scoop some ice creams..

Hit the swimming pool

Check out the school holiday programmes as your local, indoor or heated pool. Public swimming pools are usually great value for money and most kids can happily spend hours in the water, making a trip to the pool a great, day out.

Bake up a storm

Everyone loves to bake, and a good baking session can take the best part of a day, by the time you’ve researched the recipes, written the shopping list, visited the supermarket for ingredients and actually done the baking.

Things that need decorating are an excellent idea - not only does this keep the kids occupied for longer but it’s also a great outlet for their creative streaks. There are lots of websites and blogs out there too, dedicated to budget-friendly family baking recipes.

Plan an adventure by public transport

If you don’t often travel by public transport, it can feel like a real adventure to board a bus and just see where it takes you. Better still, if you can, board a bus that connects with a train and then a ferry. It a simple way to experience another side to the city you live in. Make sure to pick a fun destination and take plenty of snacks for the journey.

Hit the library

Not only are libraries a great source of books and DVDs to borrow, they also usually run special activities in the school holidays. Whether it’s arts and crafts or storytelling, the great thing about these activities is that they’re often completely free.


For more ideas about cutting the cost of everyday things this school holidays, read ‘How to survive school holidays without breaking the bank’.

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