Top 7 budget-friendly adventures with the grandkids

There’s one thing most could agree on when it comes to the summer school holidays – they can feel LONG.

If you’ve been tapped on the shoulder to look after the grandkids over the break, you’d be forgiven for being a little jittery about how your hip pocket will fare during this already-pricier period. The good news is, there are ways to rein in the spending to help avoid a budget blowout. 

Key learnings covered in this topic

  1. Ways to save on kids’ holiday activities
  2. How overspending can impact your finances
  3. How our advice team can help you.

We’ve rounded up 7 ways to help you keep the grandkids occupied these holidays. 

1.    The best things in life are free

It’s peak tourist season, meaning many cities or local areas will have plenty of free or low-cost events happening around the place, all you need to do is a little research. And if the trip involves a ride on a ferry, train or tram –the destination may not even matter 😉. 

2.    Take a trip to the library

A realm of free entertainment as it is, it’s worth seeing if your local library is offering free activities for the community over the holidays. From storytelling to craft sessions, there’s experiences for children of all ages.  

3.    Get closer to nature

Australia is blessed with parks and bushland. So, what better way to spend time together than packing a picnic and visiting a (new) park or heading off on a bushwalk.

4.    Cook or bake together

Is there a beloved recipe you could pass on to your grandkids these holidays? Or maybe it’s an opportunity to attempt a new recipe from your favourite cookbook together.

The best part is having something (hopefully) delicious to enjoy at the end of the day – and some brownie points earned from their parent(s) if there’s leftovers to share!

And if the thought of the inevitable kitchen clean up puts you off – remember many hands make light(er) work. 

5.    Have a movie marathon or break out the board games

Weather unsuitable for getting out and about, or simply feel like a lazy day at home? Organise some popcorn or snacks, decide on a movie line up, and enjoy a cozy and relaxing day together. 

Or, if you can’t convince them to sit still for the length of a movie, try whipping out a board game. 

6.    Volunteer in your local community  

The holiday period can come with a certain level of excess. Why not use your time together as an opportunity to give back through volunteering? Head to Go Volunteer for some inspiration. 

7.    Get creative 

Whether it’s getting crafty, dressing up, performing, or another creative pursuit, working on a project together can be an excellent way to tap into the grandkids’ imaginations while they’re on school break.

The bottom line

Overspending over the holiday period can affect your peace of mind, as well as your budget – and any debt incurred during this time can take months to pay off.

It might mean having a conversation with your adult children to manage expectations around what you can and can’t afford this school holiday break.

But remember, rest assured that what the grandkids will remember years from now is not the gifts you’ve showered them with, but the quality time you’ve spent together.

What to do if your financial situation has you tossing and turning at night

Remember you have access to financial advice as part of your super.* We can look at how your super’s invested to ensure it’s aligned to your circumstances, or perhaps have a look at whether you’re making the most of your retirement income. Find out about your financial advice options here. 

Information correct as at 5 December 2023.

*Advice is provided by one of our financial planners who are Authorised Representatives of Industry Funds Services Limited (IFS). IFS is responsible for any advice given to you by its Authorised Representatives. Industry Fund Services Limited ABN 54 007 016 195 AFSL 232514.