Last Minute Spring Break Ideas for Families

Recently I had a baby – and it’s got me thinking a lot about travel with kids. When it comes to spring break, if you’re still stuck in a rut about what to do, here are some great last minute ideas to consider…

Plan a road trip

A great, cost-effective way to experience new adventures – a lot of families genuinely enjoy them and it’s easier if kids are old enough to self-entertain in the car. Spring break is the perfect time to wield this card if you 1) live near some cool cities or states, 2) have a flexible job where you can work on the road or take a few days off, and 3) still want to remain within budget.

Determine where you want to go that fits with your work schedule, finances, and (obviously) driving distance from your home. Second, book lodging – anywhere from camping and Airbnbs to expensive resorts or even, if you have the funds and sanity, an RV. Third, map out the places you want to see and the things you want to do….sites like roadtrippers.com can be really handy to help with all of this.

Find day adventures nearby

If going away is either out of your budget or something you feel would make you go out of your mind, you can always think a lot smaller and make day trips around where you live.

This is a good time to hit up Groupon or Living Social or your local community centers and see what they have going on. Try a new museum, park, or other advertised activity. Play dates with friends to the park, pool, or museum can also add extra fun. If you work remotely, this can really work to your advantage. If there’s a fun city you’ve been wanting to see or restaurant you’ve wanted to try an hour away, plan the day around that activity and see what else there is to do in that area.

Go all the way and get away!

It’s not too late to get away. There are still plenty of deals to be had when it comes to getting away. Booking sites like booking.com will be a helpful tool when exploring destinations or choose a destination based on where it’s cheapest to fly – flight tracking apps like hopper can help you explore different destinations and see what week you can afford to fly and where to. Here are a few of my favorite ideas….

Fly to Colorado and ski Keystone. If you stay there, the kids ski free—a pretty sweet break. The mountains are gorgeous, the air is refreshing, and there’s bound to be snow, which kids often love. Skiing is also exhausting, so the kids will hit the hay at night and give you a couple hours to yourself!

Take a trip to Orlando’s Disney and this year – if you head to Epcot between March 6 and June 3 you will find the the 26th Annual International Flower & Garden Festivalwhich will feature Beauty and the Beast and Frozen topiaries, a Toy Story 4-themed play area, and an English Tea Garden.Disneyland’s Food & Wine runs until April 23, offers family-friendly activities, including a Jr. chef cooking experience with Chef Goofy.

Visit Washington DC. Every spring, the nation’s capital bursts alive with color, attracting an average of 1.5 million tourists to see over 3,000 trees decorate the Tidal Basin with awe-inspiring beauty. This year the annual National Cherry Blossom Festival starts March 20 and ends April 14, and includes a number of fun events on the itinerary, such as bike tours, performances, and craft making.

Spring Break Travel – Money Saving Tips

Spring travel can be pricey, especially with the influx of kids and college students traveling over spring break. However, there are a few tips to help you keep some dollars in you pocket this spring.

Book a Rental/Vacation Home

According to a recent survey by Wyndham Destinations, the number one thing (34%) travel consumers say make their vacation less enjoyable is a lack of amenities like a kitchen, laundry, a fitness room or pool. Aside of the comfort of having a ‘home away from home’ you can save money on eating (and drinking) out, especially when it comes to taking kids along. It also helps to set a daily spending limit eg) breakfast at home, pack a lunch and dinner out.

Avoid the Airport

Flying is almost always more expensive than driving—and this is especially true when you are traveling with family. It’s worth considering destinations within driving distance so you can cut out the cost of airfare. As spring starts to show it’s, a lot of destinations should start to see some sunshine, and those who don’t may still have snow to play with!

Travel Points & Miles

It’s never too late to pick up a travel credit card to save on your trip. With the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard, for example, you could score 70,000 points, worth $700 in travel, after you spend $5,000 on your card within three months of opening your account. Also make sure to check any hotel loyalty programs you belong to – with Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy, World of Hyatt or any other program, it’s possible you could get all or part of your spring break stay for free.

Track Flights and Compare Online

Go-to tracking apps like Hopper have made it easy for people to book hotels or flights based on notifications and predictions on when and how prices will rise and fall and when the best time to book is. If you decide to use an online booking site, you’ll save the most time and money if you use sites that ‘shop around’ and aggregate the best deals like booking.com – which compares thousands of trips under one roof so you can compare and save on your trip.

Be Flexible

That goes for everything – from the airline (don’t be afraid to book a budget one) to the destination. Setting your heart on a specific spring break destination is the worst way to save money, mostly because lack of options makes it hard to shop around. Look at some spots that aren’t ‘typical’ spring break destinations from Boston to Austin, Texas or Atlanta, Georgia and compare pricing for each to choose the best deal for you. Another option? Visit family or friends an save on accommodation altogether!

Spring Travel/Break 2019 – where and when to travel

Typically this time of year, travelers in seek of rescuing from winter blues start scouring the internet for springtime/spring break travel ideas and deals. However, a twist on the traditional trend might see many flocking to more unique destinations this spring. According to Booking.com’s 2019 Travel Predictions, over half of travelers would like to visit a destination that none of their friends have been to (51%). The travel booking site’s data shows that there are still savings to be had during the ‘Spring Break’ period (March 11th-April 29th), including a few popular destinations that stood out as being significantly less expensive throughout the seven-week travel period! Below show their findings and some of my top pics based on this.

Week of March 11th – March 17th

Week of March 18th – 24rd

Week of March 25th – 31th

Week of April 1st –  April 7th  

Week of April 8th – 14th

Week of April 15th – 21st

Week of April 22nd – 297h

1. Boston, Massachusetts – As Bostonians shake off the chill of winter and the unfair amounts of snow that have been plaguing the city for the last few months, the city is more than ready to offer fresh air, beautiful flowers, and amazing special events to visitors and locals alike. According to booking.com, during the week of March 18th – 24th Boston will be 54% cheaper to visit and stay. From The New England Aquarium Whale Watch to Fenway Park Tours, incredible waterfront seafood joints, and an array of busy sports bars, there is a tonne on offer for every kind of visitor on spring break.

2.. Florida –  While Miami tends to be a very popular spring break choice consider staying a little north in spots like Sunny Isles FL (the hidden gem in South Florida) which is set to be 20% cheaper than usual April 1st to 7th and 36% cheaper from April 22nd to 29th to stay. If you are prepared to fly mid-week over those periods, you can also grab flights as low as $200 roundtrip into MIA nonstop. Boasting beautiful uncrowded beaches and within reach of restaurants and legendary nightclubs of Miami to choose from – staying in Sunny Isles you can get the best of FL/Miami spring break without paying peak prices.

3. L.A. – A great spring break option, LA recently made New York Times’ Top 52 Places To Go. LA will be 8% cheaper than usual to visit from April 1st to 7th. Even there where the sun shines nearly 300 days per year, summer is technically high season which means travelers visiting in April get both sunshine AND lower hotel prices. Flight wise you can still score average roundtrip airfares from the northeast for under $300, and LA really has something to do for everyone – from site seeing to hiking or surfing or shopping. Take a ride with Bikes and Hikes L.A. offering hikes to discover some of the City’s most picturesque sunrise and sunset views, take to a board and enjoy the surf camps of Santa Monica, Redondo and Manhattan Beaches or simply take our a star map and explore all the sites that downtown LA has to offer

4. Nevada or Colorado – There are still places that despite the spring weather, winter activities are still in full force. March 18th to 24th, Denver Colorado is 21% cheaper to book accommodation, which offers some of the best skiing in the country. Nevada is another great option (flying into Las Vegas can still be found for under $300 roundtrip from NYC for example) which offers a variety of activities, from casino-going to outdoor activities like hiking and skiing.

5. Texas – Texas temps in the spring are at their best, with on average mid 70s and sunshine forecast. Austin, Texas is set to be 25% cheaper the week of April 1st –  April 7th to visit and is known for its eclectic live-music, parks and lakes for hiking, biking, swimming and boating. Houston, Texas will also be 24% cheaper to stay the following week, and is a playground for visitors; the downtown’s entertainment hub, Avenida Houston, for example, will be busy this spring break, with free activities taking places every hour from live ice carving to roller skating and waterslides.

Valentines Day Deals

Valentines Day is around the corner, and travel might be the best way to bring you and your loved one closer. So what travel ideals and deals are there out there we should book now?

The Outdoor Experience – The temperatures might be low, but all the more reason to find a reason to snuggle up with that special someone. Consider booking an affordable but cozy airbnb cabin in the woods where you can get back to nature, or make the most of the snow with a romantic ski trip. Places like Taos, New Mexico or Nevada are more under the radar and thus more affordable this time of year…. from the east or west coasts, flights can be found under $300 round-trip over coming weeks, and while hotels and condos are a little pricier at the ski resorts, there are plenty of options to find a rate that will fit in your budget.

The City Break –  Yes, you can book a flight to Paris or Rome, but for those who only have a few days to play with, consider US cities like Asheville, NC. With budget airlines expanding to the city, Asheville saw a 40 percent drop in airfares according to CheapOair. Enjoy the Blue Ridge Mountains for great value into the early winter months of 2019. Walk around the Art Deco downtown area, take a rooftop bar tour with amazing views, drink up at some of the city’s 33 breweries in the South Slop District, or even take a romantic winter hike.

The Culinary Experience – Why not make food, or wine, the language of love. Sonoma County and San Francisco are affordable and accessible this time of year, offering top tier food and wine tasting experiences. Most of Sonoma’s vineyards have been upgraded since the 2017 wildfire disaster, and are worth the brief 50 mile drive outside SF to visit….or stay within the city center and make the most of the many new urban wineries and restaurants.

The Tropical Destination – It’s low season right now for many tropical destinations like the Bahamas, which makes it a perfect time to go and get some sun. You won’t have to pay as much as you would during peak season, so if you’re looking for a deal, it’s still warm, the ocean is perfectly turquoise and you can enjoy the white sand beaches. If you are looking for a ‘hands off’ option, plenty of all-inclusive resorts can be found as low as $200 per night (including food, drinks and activities) so you can kick back for a few days and focus on each-other. =