My family did this one year, we split between 3 families and it is one of my most memorable vacations ever. It was right on the beach and so much fun to wake up and take a long walk on the beach without many crowds and without being in a hurry to go anywhere. We ate out plenty, but we did save quite a bit by cooking quite a few of our own meals. Great fun.
Another great low-cost idea on how to travel cheap is camping. Now I will admit I am not much of a camper unless I have electricity, air conditioning, a shower, etc. But I know that there are many people who really enjoy the great outdoors complete with tent and sleeping bags. Kids really love this too! So if you are the outdoorsy type, give it a try on your next vacation and save some serious money at the same time. I can’t vouch for this personally but those in the know say it is really enjoyable. If you are one like me who likes to travel with the RV or camper, places like Jellystone Park Camp Resorts and KOA are well known and plentiful, and they offer many family activities that don’t cost an arm and a leg.
Here’s another tip on how to travel cheap if you are planning a vacation to another state. Go online and check out the local newspaper. There are many deals and advertisements on how to save money, plus lots of local activities with coupons. If you can, have a copy mailed to you.
If possible, try to take your family on vacation in the off season, meaning try to avoid the middle of the summer or right at holidays. Sometimes you can get your kids some time out of school if they will make up the work. Or maybe you will be visiting some cultural areas with museums and science centers, and you can have your kids write up a paper for extra credit. Traveling in the off season is a great idea on how to travel cheap.
Finally, remember to purchase necessities before you leave (for example, sunscreen, aspirin, deodorant, toothpaste). These can be more costly if you have to buy them at the shop in the hotel. Purchase beforehand at the discount store or even the dollar store to save a few bucks.