If you are a family with three or more kids, life gets a bit more complicated. Most of the Western Hemisphere, it seems, is designed for families with two kids. Sedans are doable with three kids when the kids get older, but packing 3 car seats in the back can be difficult, if not impossible. Restaurant booths and tables are designed for 4 people. Hotels are best suited for families of 4; families of 5 often are required to buy a double room or a suite, which can be costly.
If you have three or more kids and want to take a family vacation, you may find that it is very expensive to do so. Staying in a suite or double hotel room can cost you 50% more than a single room a family of 4 can stay in. However, all is not lost. There are plenty of ways you can take a vacation as a larger family and save money.
1. Camping. For less than the cost of a meal out with your family at a modest restaurant, you can stay at a camp ground and practice some green camping. Kids often enjoy “roughing it”, and parents will love the money savings that comes with camping. Everyone will enjoy the adventure of sitting around the fire and cooking dinner or evening snacks over the open fire.
2. Renting a trailer. People often dismiss using a trailer because they only think of buying them, which can be costly unless you travel frequently. However, you can rent a trailer for a week or two for much less than the cost of buying one. (Just make sure that the rental company insures the trailer; if not, you can buy trailer insurance through a company like Caravan Club.) The nice thing about a trailer is that you can bring all of your food from home, so you will pay very little to feed the family.
3. Rent a VRBO. Many countries have vacation rentals by owners. These are often town-houses condos or homes that the owner rents out for a few days or few weeks. They are usually spacious and often cost less per night than a hotel suite would cost. They also usually come with a full kitchen including pots and pans so you can make food at the rental rather than eating out every day (unless that is what you would like to do).
If you have a family of 5 or more, don’t feel that vacations are out of the question because they will be too expensive. You don’t have to pay for an expensive suite or double hotel room. There are many options such as the three mentioned above, and a bonus to these types of arrangements is that you can prepare your own food, so you will also save on dining out costs.
You can still vacation, you just might be doing it differently now to save money. You may even find that you like vacationing this way even better.