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Photo by; Pixaby

Sometimes it feels like having fun and sticking to a budget are two concepts that don’t exist well together. Between activities with kids, going out to eat and to regular entertainment option, vacations and more, it is hard these days to be a family on a budget. That’s why we’ve created a list of 5 Ways for Families to Spend Less Money and Still Have Fun!

Don’t get discouraged—get creative! We hope you’ll be inspired by our list below to ensure you have fun together as a family without breaking the bank.

  • Eat at home. Going out to eat often can be really draining on a budget. Even if you only go every now and then—it’s expensive to feed a family even at fast food restaurants these days! Eating at home may get old after a while, so it’s important to be intentional with your plans of staying in so your family can have fun! An easy idea is Taco Night. Or try making your own pizza—let the kids wear aprons and add all the toppings themselves. Play music, eat outside, play games. The possibilities are endless and you really can have great family fun (even more fun!) without a restaurant. 
  • Skip the movie theater. Everyone knows movie theaters are an expensive outing. Try taking a whole family and buying a few snacks or drinks and you’ll leave feeling broke. If your town offers it, look for free movies in the park type events! If you don’t have any of those, create your own fun at home! Make a big deal of watching a movie as a family by turning off all the lights, turning off your phones, making a movie snack, and enjoying the comfort of your own home.

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  • Explore your cities freebies – park, museum, conservation department, etc. Movies in the park, as mentioned above, is a great free event offered in many areas. Check out your local options for free fun! You may find museums with free admissions, a variety of parks, and even conservation departments with special kids’ events. This is a great way to get to go somewhere without any cost to your family—great for a budget.
  • DIY toys. Do It Yourself projects are a great way to stay on budget, and you’d be surprised at the amount of fun even a cardboard box can bring—check out this dollhouse. DIY Toy options are endless on Pinterest as well. Whether you simply give your kids a large box to play inside or make a fort with blankets, you’ll quickly realize it’s not about the money spent on toys. Most kids have a blast with simple DIY toys that will create lasting memories instead of overpriced store bought items. 
  • Take advantage of discounts. If you are looking to stay on a budget, it’s wise to scope out discount from local attractions. You’ll find deals like “kids eat free night†or discounted ticket prices to the water park or movie theater. Take advantage of these deals and plan your outings around them, your family will never realize their experience didn’t cost full price!

As you can see, a budget is no reason to have less fun. In fact, you can spend less money and have MORE fun with the right mindset! When families spend time together, even with budget friendly activities, memories are made. This list of 5 Ways for Families to Spend Less Money and Still Have Fun is just a start for ways to enjoy yourselves when cash is a little tight. Don’t feel limited, but embrace all of the free or low-cost things that you and your family can do together today!

About the Author: David is on Dad journey with 4 kids (all under 10 years of age.) and an amazing wife. He writes about funny life lessons, money, Dad life, tech and even meals. You can follow him at DadLifeLessons.com on Facebook, Instagram,  Pinterest or Twitter.

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