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How To Plan Affordable Family Trips To Europe

Affordable family trips to Europe aren't impossible - in this guide, we'll take a look at everything you need to know to plan one.

Europe is a beautiful place, and it’s the perfect choice for family vacations.

Unfortunately, the EU isn’t known for being particularly wallet-friendly when it comes to families.
But planning affordable family trips to Europe isn’t impossible! In this guide, we’ll take a look at everything you need to know to plan family trips to Europe on a budget.

cheap family holidays in europe

Affordable Family Trips To Europe – The Ultimate Guide

Planning an affordable trip to Europe can actually be done super easily!
Here’s what you need to know:

Travel Slow

Trying to tick off every major attraction across the EU is the easiest way to max out your credit card quickly. If you’re in a hurry, you’ll probably be traveling during peak periods, which is no fun.

It might not seem ideal, but opting to spend another day or two in one place instead of constantly being on the move. AirBnBs and other hotels and hostels can offer huge discounts for longer stays, which is a great way to save money.

Avoid Hubs

When it comes to travel and holidays, almost every top-10 list is going to feature a city in Europe. Places like Venice, Paris, and Barcelona are beautiful – but they’re not good for affordable family trips to Europe.

Instead of focusing on locations that struggle with over-tourism, take a look at smaller towns. Hotels are often less busy, experiences cost less, and you may have a better experience overall.

That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a day-trip to a major city – but avoid staying there if possible.

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Check Out Flights

Websites like Google Flights, Booking.com, and Skyscanner are great ways to find affordable family trips to Europe. Just set the location to Europe, and see what pops up as the cheapest ticket.

You can also check out budget airlines (like Ryanair, Lift, and Easyjet) to see what their prices are looking like.

Travel During Off Season

This one’s a classic tip, and definitely applicable when it comes to affordable family vacations to Europe. It might not be easy to do if your kids have school, but if you can afford to, it’s definitely a lot cheaper.

Check Out Your Transport Options

Hiring a vehicle to travel around Europe can be costly, and you lose out on a lot of the amazing sights. Consider investing in a good pair of hiking/ walking shoes, or renting a bike to cycle around. You’ll save on costs and see more of Europe!

Avoid Hotels

While we mentioned them earlier up in this guide, hotels shouldn’t always be first on your list of places to stay. Hostels and AirBnBs are also great options, and significantly more affordable!

cheap family european vacations

Visit The Supermarkets

It might be tempting to eat out as much as possible while you’re abroad, but restaurants are one of the biggest drains on money. If you want to know the secret to affordable family trips to Europe, it’s visiting the supermarkets and buying groceries. Even if you don’t have anywhere to cook, a simple sandwich goes a long way to saving you money.

Check Out City Passes

The majority of cities in Europe have city passes. These are great ways to see the sights around Europe for a lot less. From museums to train rides, city passes help you save more than you’d think.

Look For Family Packages

If you do decide to stay in a resort or hotel, take a look to see if they offer any family packages. Family packages can include activities for the kids, meals, and other things that (ultimately) you’d save on.

Plan An Itinerary

It might seem like a no-brainer, but planning an itinerary helps you figure out more-or-less how much you need to put away for your trip to Europe. Put your must-visits in there, and if you have any free time, you can add in locations or sights that you want to visit, but don’t have to visit.

With all of the above tips, you’re sure to save a ton, and really plan an affordable family trip to Europe.

To speed up the process for you a bit, we’re going to dive into the best locations for family trips to Europe on a budget.

affordable family trips to europe

10 Most Affordable Family-Friendly Places In Europe

Each of these locations was chosen because of their low cost, and family-friendliness.

  1. Marmaris, Turkey
  2. Algarve, Portugal 
  3. Sunny Beach, Bulgaria
  4. Madeira, Portugal
  5. Sliema, Malta
  6. Auvergne, France
  7. Corfu, Greece
  8. Costa del Sol, Spain
  9. Basilicata, Italy
  10. Krakow, Poland

The last thing to do before you start planning your trip is to get a rough idea of how much meals cost (on average) in Europe.

family trips to europe on a budget

Average Costs For Meals In Europe

While the amount of food you spend on a meal depends a lot on personal preferences, we can look at some averages to get an overall idea.

The average estimate of a meal in Europe is around 20 Euros. Lunch and breakfasts are going to be a lot cheaper than dinners.

If you find food trucks or stalls to eat from, you could be looking at as little as 10 Euros per meal.

It’s also important to note that Eastern Europe is a fair amount cheaper than Western Europe.

Happy traveling!

How Air Doctor Can Help

Air Doctor is an easy-to-use app that connects travelers with a global network of multi-lingual doctors and specialists so they can access medical care anywhere, anytime. With the Air Doctor app in your pocket, you can travel the world worry-free.

Air Doctor gives you access to:

  • A global network of over 20,000 multi-lingual doctors and specialists
  • Choice of clinic, at-home (hotel), and video consultations
  • Valid, local prescriptions
  • Telemedicine services in up to 21 languages
  • 24/7 multi-lingual support
  • Transparent pricing, and reviews
  • Most common medical specialties

If you’re looking for reliable, accessible, and global medical assistance, Air Doctor is the perfect choice for you. Download the app before your next trip just in case.

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Jenny Cohen Drefler

Jenny Cohen Derfler

Air Dr CEO & Co-Founder

Jenny is the CEO and one of the Co-Founders at Air Doctor. She spent more than 20 years at Intel, most recently as general manager of its manufacturing facility in Israel and before that in various engineering and manufacturing roles in Silicon Valley. Air Doctor is her second startup having previously founded electric vehicle company ElectRoad.