Orlando is a great destination that is fun for kids of all ages. Northeasterners appreciate its warm weather, its relative closeness (a domestic flight of less than 3 hours from NY’s JFK airport) and its wealth of exciting attractions. You may have heard that it is expensive to vacation there, but even if your bankroll is limited, don’t let that discourage you. It is possible for you to take your kids to Orlando on a small budget and have a great time. You just need a little foresight, flexibility and patience, all qualities that you as a mom have had plenty of opportunity to develop.
Generally the sooner you begin planning your vacation the better. Of course there are often special deals at the very last minute but schlepping to the airport on the chance of cheap stand by tickets somehow doesn’t work as well now as when you were younger and childless. So start early – check online travel sites for the best airfares and look for bargain package deals. If possible try to arrange to take your vacation outside of peak times, such as school vacations and long holiday weekends. When booking a trip far in advance, it might be worthwhile to spend a bit of your savings for travel insurance, in case circumstances change.
You may have your heart set on an exclusive spa resort with private Jacuzzi, but if that would leave you with no cash for little things like sightseeing or eating, you’ll have to be more flexible. There are plenty of reasonably priced hotels in Orlando that won’t break the bank, if your priorities are comfort, cleanliness and convenient access to the sites you’d like to visit. If you’re not willing to give up on luxury accommodation and you have a small family, you might consider sharing a suite or villa with friends who have children about the same age as yours. That way you can also trade off babysitting so each set of parents can have some alone time one evening. Visitwww.CRSHotels.com for the best deals.
Getting your priorities in order will help make sure you have cash to spend on what you really want – visiting the attractions with your children. Explain ahead of time to your kids that you will be eating meals picnic style rather than paying for fancy restaurant meals. Instead of blowing your budget on souvenirs, take photos of everyone posing with that cute novelty hat or doll (with the shop owner’s permission, of course). Keeping a family diary of your vacation – complete with poems, drawings, pressed flowers, you name it – is another low budget way to remind yourselves in the future of what a great time you had in Orlando.
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