How to Plan an Inexpensive Summer Vacation

It’s summer time! School is out and if you have kids they are probably getting restless by now and asking you what the plans are for summer vacation. If you’re trying to save money and be frugal like us – you’re probably thinking that summer vacation is not in cards for you. However, there are plenty of options to have a nice summer vacation without spending a ton of money.

Many people like to go on cruises or tropical destinations for summer vacation and that can definitely cost a lot of money. But you don’t have to go on a fancy cruise or to the tropics to have a good time with your family. There are tons of things to do right in your own backyard, or places to go that are really inexpensive. Here are a few options to consider this summer:

Be a Tourist, Locally

I guarantee you that there are plenty of places where you live that you have never been to before. I can think of ten (10) places off the top of my head where I’ve said “I’ve always wanted to go there” more than once. Well now’s our chance to go there! If you can’t think of some places off the top of your head, do a search for “local attractions” on the internet and you might be surprised at the places you find right in your own backyard. One of the places we have always wanted to go to was “Dinosaur World”. It’s not too far from us in Plant City, Florida and we discovered that you can even bring your pets with you. We brought the dogs along and had a nice day out with the pups.

Visit National Parks

A lot of national parks are really cheap to visit. Almost all of them have what’s called “fee-free days” to allow the public to visit for free. There’s nothing like spending time in the great outdoors and taking in the natural beauty of the area. You could spend the day there and have a picnic, or go campings for a few days. Either way, it’s sure to be a trip you’ll never forget.

Visit Friends and Family

Summer is the perfect time to visit family that you haven’t seen in a long time. If you’re like me, you probably have family all over the world. I have family in New York, Tennessee, Massachusetts and even in Germany! I’m sure they would love to hear from you and would love it even more if you came for a visit. Most will even let you stay with them so you don’t have to fork up any extra money for a hotel. If the place is within driving distance, you can make a family road trip out of it. If not, you can shop around for competitively prices airline tickets. When staying with your relatives, there will be minimal expenses and they are usually the best people to show you around the area so you can take in all the sights.

So there you have it! There are fun things you can do with your family this summer without spending a ton of money. Now that you have some options, check out our post 5 Ways to Save Money When Traveling. This will give you more tips and tricks on how to save money when traveling this summer!

Check out our Youtube video to learn more about these three great ideas to plan a fun and exciting summer vacation without spending a lot of money at

Mrs. Frugal

Just your average millennial trying to navigate life and get rid of debt by being frugal.

This Post Has 19 Comments

  1. Jeannie

    We do a lot of these types of staycations, but it never occurred to me to do a search as if I were visiting my home city for the first time. And yes, hanging with family on a trip is so much easier than planning holiday travel.

  2. Ilia Liz

    I really like your tips for planning an inexpensive summer vacation. We do some local tourism around where we live in Maryland, but I have to be sincere in that very seldom we look at the National Parks as an option. Around us we have Washington, DC and Philadelphia, both of which we can visit during in a day.
    However, your blog post has open up my interest in taking into consideration the National Parks.

    1. Mrs. Frugal

      I’m glad to hear you learned something from my post. It definitely seems like you have a lot of options close to you. I’m excited for you to try them out!

  3. Stephanie Tapert

    Thank you so much for sharing! I think I might look up some local hikes in my area!!

    1. Mrs. Frugal

      That’s a great idea! There are so many beautiful local parks.

  4. It’s fun being a tourist in your own town! I live on Long Island and their are many places to tour, beaches to explore and historical landmarks to visit. Thanks for this article and reminding me that there’s plenty for us to do in our own area, we just need to look for it. Taking a road trip to visit friends/family is always fun. Great ideas Mrs. Frugal!

    1. Mrs. Frugal

      Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed my post. Long Island is such a nice place! There is definitely plenty to do right in your own back yard.

  5. Darla

    We’ve been visiting a lot of parks. It is definitely a way to get out without spending any money!

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