Why not enjoy a cheap day out with the family by picking up a few easy savings along the way. Liz Walsh from Topdogdays has put together some of her favourite money saving ideas to help you enjoy a day out on a budget.
- Free Annual Pass Upgrades
Plenty of attractions now offer a free annual pass upgrade when you purchase a full price day ticket including Blenheim Palace & the Eden Project. Whilst your initial outlay can be slightly higher, as you cannot take advantage of 2 for 1 vouchers or promotional codes, it does offer you the chance to return as many times as you wish over a 12 month period. Look out for activities running during the season that can offer a fresh perspective on return visits.
- Rainy Day Guarantees, (free return visits)
A number of settings, particularly theme parks, now run rainy day guarantees for those that book tickets in advance. This offers you a free return visit should the weather hamper your day out. Whilst there are plenty of terms & conditions in place for this offer, (3 hours of continuous rain needed at Blackpool Pleasure Beach to secure a return visit but only 1 hour at Chessington), it is definitely worth keeping this in mind if the weather turns sour.
- Apply for a Blue Peter Badge
Valid Blue Peter badgeholders can pick up free entry to 170+ visitor attractions around the UK. Badgeholders, age 6 to 15 years, must be accompanied by a full paying adult, presenting both a badge and badgeholder’s card on the day of their visit. With many of the top tourist settings around the country signed up for this deal, (including Edinburgh Zoo, Diggerland &Tower of London), it can be worth encouraging your child to apply.
- Free Entry Attractions
The old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ is not necessarily true when it comes to free entry attractions around the UK. We’ve come across some fascinating settings that offer free entry such as the National Coal Mining Museum, (Yorkshire) where you go 140metres underground in the company of an ex-miner or the Police Museum, (Manchester) where you can try life out in the cells. Some also open up entry for free later in the day, (look out for free entry to Birmingham Thinktank Science Garden after 3pm), so worth double checking what’s available in your local area.
- Family Membership Schemes
Look out for attractive family membership schemes that can offer value for money for even the largest of families. National Trust membership currently includes up to 10 children/grandchildren where the youngsters do not necessarily need to live at the same address as the adults. English Heritage membership allows up to 6 accompanying children that are under 19 years within their family membership. Keep an eye out for additional perks such as free parking and concessionary rates at other attractions too.