Large Family Travel – Ways to Save Money


When traveling I’ve found that if you have more than 4 or 5 people in your family it can be difficult to find affordable options. We love to travel but we also don’t like spending a ton of money on said travel. I’ve become quite good at planning affordable vacations for our family of 6.

Here are a few of ways we save money when traveling.

Plan Early

The best way to get a good deal is the plan ahead. When you are trying to make reservations or find tickets for a large number of people you need to book them early. A lot of the best priced deals for large families get book quickly. We usually book our vacations at the beginning of the year. This allows us to plan our year of travel, coordinate everyone’s schedules and find the best prices.

Choose the Off Season

If possible choose a less busy travel season. We like to travel in early spring or fall because they are less busy and usually a little cheaper than the tradition summer travel season. If you are flexible with your vacation dates this is a great way to save money on accommodations and even admission prices.

Book A Rental Home

This is by far the biggest way we save money. Most hotels just aren’t suited for families larger than 5, this means larger families have to book 2 hotel rooms which essentially doubles to cost of your accommodations. We book almost all of our rental homes through Airbnb. I can typically find a rental house that has enough beds (and usually a lot more square footage) for our whole family for about the same cost as 1 hotel room.

Pack Your Own Food

If you book a rental house you will most likely have a full kitchen which allows you to prepare meals and save money. I know it’s vacation and you don’t want to be in the kitchen all day but if you can eat a few meals in it will save you tons of money. We typically eat all of our breakfasts in our rental and have plenty of healthy snack options as well. We might eat dinner at the house or pack a picnic lunch once during our trip.

Find Free Activities

Look for museums, attractions, parks and other events that have free admission. Also, see if any of your local zoos or museums have membership programs that can save you money or even give you free access to other museums or zoos across the country.

Research Deals

Research the area you plan to visit. Look for special deals from places you’d like to visit. Sign up for their online newsletters or follow them on social media. A lot of places post special exclusive deals online. Also, check out Groupon or other deal sites for the city you plan to visit, you may be able to book a special activity at a discounted price.

Overall, if you can be flexible with your travel plans you will probably save hundreds of dollars. Put in a little extra time researching and planning your trip, and you can save money just by being prepared. Plus, you’ll have peace of mind knowing you are making a money-wise decision because you did your research.

Traveling on a budget with a large family is totally possible, it just takes a little preparation.

How does your family save money when you travel?


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  1. I never considered myself a big family, but I guess my family of 5 could be considered big lol. I agree with all the tips you gave, especially planning ahead and packing food. Gas station stops can be so expensive when you and your little ones are hungry or want a snack.

  2. I agree about Airbnb as a smart option to save money. The privacy you can have there is a big plus. Some owners also offer breakfast or lunch with the accommodation. However, you must be really lucky to get a one for the period you desire 🙂 But if you prefer to really rest and have a bit more luxury holiday, some good hotels also offer family suits and the total price per person is more profitable than rooms for couples. However, as you already mentioned, earlier then better 😉

  3. Great ideas! Once when all of the family traveled to the beach, we rented a home and all stayed together, it was very economical and we were close to the beach. We cooked some food there as well which helped. We are going on a trip this spring just across the state, plan to use my husband’s Hilton honors points for the hotel and do some free, low cost activities so our only costs will be food and gas. Thanks for sharing your ideas, plan to pin to share!

  4. Some fantastic ideas here! I love using money-saving apps that help you find local deals, even in places you’ve never been before! Otherwise, you just get ripped off as a tourist…

  5. This is is helpful! We’re starting to panic about doing anything with our kids as they get older, and my youngest is growing out of a crib /pack n play. We are only a family of 4, but we want one more and my husband likes to have his parents and brother do stuff with us and it can be quite insane with hotels.

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