Holidays in the UK have always been extremely expensive. If you want to stay somewhere nice by the sea and enjoy plenty of entertainment, you can easily spend a lot more in the UK than you would on the same things abroad, even once the cost of flights taken into account. .
This year it’s even worse – during the pandemic, when so many people ended up vacationing at home, prices soared, and in the past year they have soared again.
Inflation figures for May laid bare some of the most shocking increases. A stay in the UK at a campsite or holiday resort costs 24% more this year than last. Getting there is also much more expensive, as the price of the gas you’ll need for the trip has gone up by 30%.
If you decide to navigate the rail network instead, the expenses have increased alarmingly here too. By far the cheapest way to travel longer distances by train is to book well in advance and get a ticket in advance. However, according to the Office of Road and Rail, fares rose 8.8% in the year to March, well ahead of inflation at the time.
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If you opt for a hotel instead, you will pay 9% more than at this time next year, and of course it will be much more expensive than a campsite. Then you have to factor in food and drink and going out, and spending to go to a cafe or restaurant goes up by 7%.
This means you have to work harder to get a break in the UK without breaking the bank. There are still a few options that can reduce costs.
1. Think outside the box
Devon and Cornwall will always be incredibly popular and therefore more expensive, as will a stay in other tourist hotspots such as the Cotswolds, the Lake District or Snowdonia. It is therefore worth taking an interest in the lesser-known beauties for a break a little off the beaten track.
2. Book everything as soon as possible
This applies in particular to housing. Hotels will increase prices as rooms snap up, and while vacation homes don’t always work the same way, the most affordable and value-for-money ones will be the first to go. be reserved, often a year in advance.
The same rule also applies to attractions, which may well offer a cheaper online price for people who book in advance.
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It also means you are guaranteed entry, which may not be the case if you show up unannounced at a popular attraction on one of the busiest days of the year.
3. Camp or home swap
Accommodation accounts for the lion’s share of the cost of any break, so consider your options.
Some people will stay with friends and plan a road trip to make as many stops as possible.
Others will arrange home swaps with another family, so they can explore a different part of the country. Some websites organize holiday exchanges with strangers, but you must be prepared to have someone you don’t know live in your house for a week.
Campsites have become more expensive, but they are still cheaper than any alternative. If you can get your hands on a second-hand tent or borrow one, it can be an affordable way to see the country.
It’s worth considering joining the Camping and Caravanning Club, which will cost you £45 but gives you up to 30% off the cost of staying at Club sites.
4. Use supermarket loyalty points
These can be redeemed for vouchers to spend on hotels, holiday accommodations or a number of attractions.
A useful option is Hotels.com, available through Tesco Clubcard rewards (TSCO.L), where you can redeem £5 in Clubcard points for £15 in hotel vouchers, and can be spent on all kinds of accommodation.
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Meanwhile, if you have a family that loves theme parks, you can also redeem points for three times the value of park tickets, which can lower the cost of a day trip.
5. Organize a delivery to the supermarket for your arrival
If you are self-employed, start with a supermarket store or ideally have one delivered to you within hours of arrival. This way you can plan your meals in advance, take packed lunches with you wherever you go and reduce the cost of food compared to eating out during a break in the UK.