It’s the Easter holidays and that brings about lots of stress about money. Parents and non-parents alike find they have to fork out for Easter egg gifts, normal activities are more expensive, and some people even have added expenses, such as childcare costs. Here are some ideas for saving money over the period.
Days out with the children during the school holidays can really cost a small fortune. Some ways of saving money here, can be: firstly, try a picnic in the park or the beach – for this idea, it might be a good idea to wrap up, the weather can be rather changeable in April, and it will most likely rain (and probably even each day, at some point), but children and adults alike can still have fun outdoors, whatever the weather. If the weather is terrible and you really don’t fancy venturing outdoors, then consider a rainy day movie and indoor picnic – grab your family members and a blanket, a bucket of popcorn (this can be bought from any supermarket), some sandwiches, fruit, some kind of confectionery or crisps, a drink, and any other nibbles you feel makes the perfect picnic, and lay them out on the picnic blanket. After the film is finished and the food is eaten, you can use the blanket as a makeshift den – hours of fun.
For something a bit more special, look at local websites or Facebook for details of events at local farms, etc, as these often have special deals in the Easter holidays, such as “free entry for children” or “meal and entry for £6”, and so on, which means you can save quite a bit. Also, other businesses bump up their prices over busier periods like this, so be wary of that, and a trick for those is to go to attractions from another area that has a different term time schedule, so your children could be off school but the children local will not be, and prices for entry remain at the lower amount.
A good way of saving money, regardless of where you choose to go for days out, whether they are to specific attractions or a ‘free’ day out in a park or the beach, is to take your own meals and snacks with you. You can still buy special ‘treat’ items, but they are much cheaper bought from a supermarket in the morning, than from Alton Towers or wherever, during the day, and it only takes a few minutes of foreplanning to prepare a packed lunch and gather these snacks.
Easter egg buying is another expensive business. Instead of buying expensive Easter eggs for friends and family, suggest instead that you will buy them a bar of chocolate or other small gift, or just get together to spend time together as a family instead. If it really is non-negotiable that you must buy Easter eggs for other people, go to local pound shops or bargain basement shops for these, and you can pick up some much more cheaply. Alternatively, supermarkets now do their own version – Tesco and Sainsburys do at least – of eggs that are cheaper for the same size product as Cadburys/Nestle and so on. Some places also start selling their stock of Easter eggs at a reduced price from Easter Saturday onwards. So it pays to look around.
Go to pound shops and other bargain basement shops for craft supplies for making Easter bonnets, Easter baskets, organising Easter egg hunts and so on. You can pick up packs of craft items for a small price, and save 3 or 4 times what you would spend in a supermarket or such place. In the run up to Easter, these shops will stock items specific to Easter – such as felt bunnies or egg shaped items – and come Easter weekend they will often be reduced in price. All year round, however, items that are not specific to Easter, but still could be utilised in such crafts, can be purchased cheaply.