When the snow starts to melt, and the flowers begin to bloom, you know that summer is around the corner. It can be an expensive corner. From sunscreen to new clothes, your family can spend a lot of money during the summer months. If money is tight, you're always looking for ways to save while having a good time. It's possible to save money on the summer essentials with a little planning and smart shopping. Here are a few tips to get you started on the path to a fun summer.
Visit the Thrift Stores in Your Area
People donate a lot of items in pristine condition to thrift stores. If your children have outgrown all of their summer clothes, a thrift store can help you restock their closets without draining your wallet. In some cases, you can buy all the clothes your children need from thrift stores.
It isn't just clothing available at thrift stores. You may find bikes, skateboards, or other equipment you kids can enjoy in the warmer weather. Keep an open mind and check all the departments for an assortment of items.
It's no secret that when the kids are home, your food budget skyrockets. To save money, you need to create a weekly plan of menus. You can coordinate the menu with the sales circular at your favorite grocery store. For variety, consider theme nights. You can have Taco Tuesday and Italian on Thursday.
Don't forget the snacks! Kids love to graze in the summer months. It's a good idea to keep healthy and filling snacks on hand. The good news is that the summer months bring a cornucopia of fresh fruits and veggies.
I'm bored! It's the battle cry of all kids in the middle of the summer. It's also the most dreaded phrase by parents. By acting now, you can avoid the summertime blues. Plan an activity for each week.
You can sign your children up for a summer reading program. Most libraries offer it, and your kids can check out books for free. While shopping at the thrift stores, you can look for puzzles and board games.
Use your imagination to come up with free or low-cost activities. You might consider a photo scavenger hunt. Your kids can use their phones to take pictures of listed items, such as a red bird or yellow car.
Look for Camps and Summer Programs
From churches to schools, there are many inexpensive or free summer programs and camps. Ask friends, school counselors, and coworkers about programs in your area that provide summer programs. Many of these camps and summer programs offer scholarships and hardship options to lower the cost or make them free.
Some programs only last a week, while others last a month or the entire summer. In some cases, there are camps where your child spends the night too. These programs can help keep your children entertained over the summer vacation.
Wait for The Sales
Stores begin bringing in products for the summer in early spring. When the Fourth of July arrives, stores want to sell all these products quickly. Only buy the essentials in the spring and wait for the sales in the middle of summer.
You can stock up on sunscreen, beach toys, and bathing suits for next year. It's a good idea to check the sales circular each week and buy items you need when they're on sale. You can save a lot of money this way.
Your summer doesn't need to be expensive to be fun. If you shop the sales and plan ahead, your family can have fun, and also save money!