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Staycation is a word that was coined in the recession of 2007-2010, and grew in popularity out of the UK that basically means a frugal way of vacationing close to your home, taking a trip to a neighboring city or just simply getting creative of how your family spends their free time.
With the unemployment rate still at 9.25% and most economic experts claiming that we are still knee deep in a recession most households are foregoing their vacation plans, or at least looking at ways to become more frugal this summer.
You don’t have to travel far in order to have fun, especially if you have family with young kids, fortunately children are easily entertained, so if you can get creative there are a ton of things that you can do in order to plan your next “staycation.”
1. Go camping…in your backyard!
Everybody knows one of the greatest things about the summer is the weather. With the days being nice and hot, and with nights staying cool and mild give you and your family a great opportunity to go camping, but you don’t have to go far for your camping trip, all you have to do is step into your backyard. The great thing about doing a little camping in the backyard is that you’re only a few steps from civilization but you can still enjoy the beauty of the outdoors. In some parts of the country you won’t even need to a tent, just a few sleeping bags and a few pillows is all you’re going to need to enjoy sleeping under the stars.
2. Find some local trails and go hiking.
In some parts of the country the winters are really brutal, so take advantage of this beautiful weather and check out some local trails in the area. Most counties around the country have beautiful trails for all types of different fitness levels, if you’re super fit you can always find a steep trail to climb, and if you’re more of the scenic hiker I’m sure you can find some easy flat terrain to traverse across.
3. Sign up to daily deal sites.
Groupon, Living Social and a host of other daily deal sites will not only give you some extreme discounts that sometimes can add up to 90% off, they also give you access to some of the greatest activities around town. Things like hot air balloon rides, horseback riding, and kayak tours are some of the great things you can do on a dime.
4. Video game night!
Ever since the advent of the Wii, video games ceased to be a sedentary activity and turned into a physical and interactive experience. So break out the margarita machine, and invite some of your best gaming buddies over for a evening of Wii Bowling.
5. Neighborhood movie night.
Get the neighborhood together and set up a projector set up at the local park and start playing your favorite family movie. Inviting all the kids from the neighborhood to go chill on the grass at the local park for a movie night as a great way to keep it cheap, keep it cool and keep the kids entertained.
6. Check out the local cultural attractions.
When’s the last time you checked out the community theater? Do you even know if you have a community theater? How about a local art museum, or art gallery? Even small towns have some sort of cultural art center, and if you don’t know if you have one, now would be a great time to discover your city.
The constant worry that comes with having to deal with your job, raising a family, and being a responsible adult can be a daunting and stressful task, so whatever you plan on doing make sure, you have fun. There is a ton of things you can do on a budget with your Staycation, so go out, get active and have a blast!
Bobby Dee is personal finance blogger and freelance writer who currently works with a credit counseling organization that gives free credit counseling to consumers suffering from debt.
FatWallet Tip: Check out the travel deals page and search for discounts or cash back on hotels in your local area if you want the feeling of getting away without the travel expenses.