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Planning Affordable Family Winter Vacations

In this guide, we'll look at everything you need to know when planning affordable family winter vacations. Ready to start saving? Let's go!

With Old Man Winter on the way, now’s a great time to start planning great family winter vacations.
But, if you’re not careful, you could quickly find yourself without much left in your savings.

In this guide, we’ll look at everything you need to know when planning affordable family winter vacations.
Ready to start saving? Let’s go!

affordable winter vacations

Planning The Trip

The first step in any vacation is planning – and affordable winter family vacations are no exception. Here’s what you need to consider:


Here are the things you should keep in mind when looking for a destination.

  • Affordability: Finding affordable family winter vacations can involve a fair amount of looking around. Affordability is the main factor here, and we’re not just talking about accommodation. Things like transport, food, and activities are all things you need to factor in when searching for your vacay stay.
  • Weather: You should also consider what kind of weather you want your affordable family winter vacation to have. Some places are sunnier than others during the winter months, so if you’re looking for a warmer holiday, you should look at those places. If you prefer something colder, take a look at places that tend to get a lot of snow during your vacation period.
  • Activities & Amenities: Look for destinations with family-friendly accommodations, such as resorts with kids’ clubs, spacious rentals, or hotels with amenities like pools and playgrounds. You can also research the availability of family-friendly attractions, such as theme parks, zoos, museums, and outdoor recreational areas.

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One of the biggest challenges that affordable family winter vacations face is the cost of travel.

It’s especially prominent if you’re flying, which is why we’ve got some tips below to help you spend less without sacrificing on convenience.

  • Comparison Websites: Flight comparison websites are invaluable tools for finding the best deals on flights. They take information from airlines and travel agencies and allow you to compare prices, schedules, and other flight details. Some great flight comparison websites include, Skyscanner, Google Flights, and Kayak.
  • Travel Dates: Some locations may cost more or less depending on whether it’s pre-, middle, or post-winter weather. You should also find out whether or not your vacation spot has any seasonal events that could bump up the price. It’s important to keep yourself flexible and be ready to take a trip at an earlier or later time than you expected. And, if you’re looking for cheaper flights, you should also consider mid-week tickets.


Here are a few tips to help you pack smarter!

  • Versatile Clothing: You’ll want to pack clothing items that can be mixed and matched to create multiple outfits. If you’re headed somewhere cold, you can pack lightweight, long-sleeved tops and breathable leggings or long johns that can be worn as base layers or on their own for indoor activities. You can also opt for convertible or multi-functional clothing items, such as zip-off pants that can be converted into shorts or jackets with removable liners, to maximize versatility and save space in your luggage.
  • Packing Space: Experiment with rolling clothes instead of folding them to save space and minimize wrinkles. This technique also makes it easier to fit more items into your suitcase. You can also consider using compression bags or packing cubes to organize and compress clothing, reducing the overall volume of your luggage. This can help maximize space and keep items neatly organized during your trip.

winter family vacations on a budget

Alternative Locations For Affordable Family Winter Vacations

On top of being more affordable, these alternative locations also offer unique experiences for you and your family!

1. National Parks

Many national parks transform into winter wonderlands during the colder months, offering stunning landscapes blanketed in snow.

Consider destinations like Yellowstone National Park, Yosemite National Park, or Grand Teton National Park for outdoor adventures such as snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and wildlife viewing.

2. Small Ski Resorts

Instead of popular, high-profile ski resorts, consider smaller ski areas that offer more affordable lift tickets, equipment rentals, and accommodations. Look for family-friendly resorts with beginner slopes and discounted rates for children.

3. Beach Destinations With Mild Winters

Escape the winter chill by heading to beach destinations with mild winters. Look for coastal areas in southern states like Florida, Texas, or California, where you can enjoy sunny weather and outdoor activities such as beachcombing, swimming, and water sports.

4. Historic Cities

Explore historic cities with rich cultural heritage and plenty of indoor attractions to enjoy during the winter months. Consider destinations like Charleston, South Carolina; Savannah, Georgia; or New Orleans, Louisiana, where you can experience charming architecture, local cuisine, and cultural events.

5. Camping

Embrace the great outdoors with a winter camping adventure in national forests, state parks, or designated campgrounds. Pack warm clothing, cold-weather gear, and insulated sleeping bags to stay cozy in the cold.

6. Small Towns & Villages

Discover the charm of small towns and villages that offer cozy accommodations, local eateries, and winter festivities. Consider destinations like Lake Placid, New York; Leavenworth, Washington; or Banff, Alberta, where you can experience small-town hospitality and outdoor adventures.

affordable family winter vacations

Entertaining The Kids

Keeping your kids entertained is the key to creating a vacation with lasting memories.

Tips For Keeping The Kids Engaged

Here are a few tips and tricks that’ll help you keep the little ones engaged.

  • Plan Ahead: Research and plan activities in advance to ensure there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Check opening hours, admission fees, and reservation requirements for attractions and events.
  • Be Flexible: Be prepared to adapt your plans based on children’s interests, energy levels, and weather conditions. Have a backup plan or alternative activities in case of unexpected changes or cancellations.
  • Involve The Kids: Involve children in the vacation planning process by letting them choose activities, attractions, or meals. Consider their preferences and interests when making decisions to ensure they feel engaged and excited about the vacation.

affordable family snow vacations

Winter Activities

Here are a few outdoor & indoor activities you can use to spend time with the little ones.

Outdoor Winter Activities

Outdoor winter activities include:

  • Sledding
  • Building snowmen
  • Ice skating
  • Snowball fights

Indoor Winter Activities

Indoor winter activities include:

  • Board games
  • Card games
  • Arts & crafts
  • Movie nights

How Air Doctor Can Help

Did you know if you need to find a doctor abroad you can use the Air Doctor app to find one – anywhere, anytime.

Air Doctor gives you:

  • Access to over 20,000 multi-lingual doctors worldwide
  • Choice of clinic, at-home (hotel), and video visits
  • Local, valid prescriptions through our cross-border services
  • Quality medical care, including urgent visits
  • 24/7 multi-lingual customer support
  • Video consultation services in up to 21 languages
  • Partnered with leading insurance providers

Download the app, 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.