Weekend breaks on a budget

Beach huts - Southwold, Suffolk, UK

So, Spring has finally brought some much-needed milder weather with it and many of us have finally managed to put a bit of money away since clearing those post-Christmas debts.

But with Summer still a few months down the line, perhaps it's time to have a weekend getaway to recharge your batteries, spend some quality time with friends and family and escape the routine of work and household responsibilities for just a few days.

Many people are put off the idea of spending a weekend away because they think it will leave their wallets a lot lighter - and make the pressure of taking care of the bills and essentials for the rest of the month much heavier.

You can read our guide to budgeting here.

However, you could take a weekend break without breaking the bank. Let's take a look at a few ideas on how you could do this.

Why not go camping?

If you like little adventures and you're a fan of the great outdoors, going camping could be a great idea for a weekend away - and it doesn't have to blow a big hole in your budget. Look online for what campsites there are not too far from where you live. There are some stunning parts of the British countryside, including many parts 'off the beaten path', which could prove perfect, particularly if you get some nice weather.

If you don't have a tent or any camping equipment of your own, you could share with your friends and you could all chip in to cover the cost of food and fuel over the course of the weekend.

You'll find more money-saving tips here that could help you free up the cash you need for your break .

Consider looking for a last-minute deal

Many budget airlines and travel companies offer last-minute flights and deals, which could be suitable if you're looking for a European city break to somewhere such as Paris, Barcelona or Amsterdam.

Rather than looking at expensive hotels, you could look for a hostel with your travelling companions, or even check online to see if spreading the cost of an apartment could be cheaper. When it comes to food, you don't need to pay through the nose in fancy restaurants either: you could simply stock up on kitchen staples (e.g. pasta, bread, meat, rice) at the local supermarket when you reach your destination and cook together. That way you can save your spending money for all the 'fun stuff', such as tourist attractions and days out.

Think about a day at the seaside

You don't have to pick somewhere far-flung and exotic to have a great time. If the weather is expected to be good, a trip out to the coast could be a great opportunity to spend some fun time with the kids.

Take a picnic basket and/or a freezer bag so you won't have to spend money on ice creams, drinks and other goodies while you're there, and again, you can split the transport costs to make things more economical.

If you're looking to knock money off your break, our travel voucher codes could help .

Image iStockPhotos / Rui Miguel da Costa Neves Saraiva

Tags: debt, money, travel, holiday, family, weekend, saving money, camping, budget

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