How to Save Money and Stress When Vacationing With Small Children

Does the thought of traveling with your new baby or small toddler cause you stress? Or maybe you’re more worried about what that travel will do to your tight budget? Travel should be a source of stress relief, not a reason to worry. So if you are feeling anxious about travel costs or the added pressures of vacationing with little ones in tow, here are some basics you need to know to banish those budget and travel worries:

Save on Travel Essentials

No family trip is complete without a shopping trip to pick up some travel necessities. Before you go out and buy additional supplies for your luggage, though, be sure to check online for coupons for stores like Kohl’s to get the best price possible. For example, you can use Kohl’s discount codes and online promo codes to save on everything from clothing to toys to actual luggage. Having some baby gear—like extra wipes and a change of clothes—stocked in your suitcase can save you the stress of having to buy those additional items on the road. So make sure you find the best deals on everything you need for your baby, toddler or other little ones, to avoid unplanned expenses.

Switch to Cheaper Auto Insurance

This one likely has you confused, because what does car insurance have to do with reducing stress for traveling parents? It turns out that you can travel with full coverage insurance at lower prices, while ensuring that you meet all state minimums and have less to worry about if you are involved in a costly accident. You can find ways to save by inquiring about discounts. For instance, if you bundle your policies or haven’t been in an accident, then you may qualify for lower premiums. Be sure to gather quotes and compare estimates when it’s time to renew. Speaking of driving safely, avoiding unsafe driving behaviors can also keep your little passengers safe, which is one of the best ways to reduce your parenting stress on long drives or big family road trips.

Fly Without Excess Baggage Fees

Before traveling by air with small children, be sure to check out stroller policies for different airlines. Many let you check a stroller for no additional charge, so that’s one way to save your family some stress and money. If you want to trim baggage fees even further, you could try to fit all of your gear into carry-on bags as well. This can actually be easier than it sounds, especially since you can also carry a diaper bag onto your flight as your allowed personal item. If you need to check bags for your family, you can also look at a few money-saving tips to avoid excess fees.

Bring Travel Entertainment to Save Stress

If you want to avoid stressing out while traveling with small children, you need a plan to keep them entertained. On a plane, keeping your toddlers or small children occupied can be as simple as printing out some inexpensive coloring pages or packing some fun books into their carry-on bag. Letting your kids listen to their favorite music or watch their favorite movies is also a good way to avoid stressful meltdowns. Just be sure to pick up some kid-friendly headphones as well, so you and any other passengers don’t have to hear “Baby Shark” over and over again.

Pick a Family-Friendly Vacation Destination

Honestly, making the most of your family vacation can be just as important as saving money. If your kids are actually enjoying their trip, they’re also less likely to be cranky or fussy. So before you embark on your next family adventure, look for kid-friendly vacation spots that will provide endless options for family fun and memories. Most of these destinations, like Tampa, FL and Williamsburg, VA are also super friendly to your budget, which is an added bonus.

When you plan a trip with smaller children, saving money and stress at the same time is important. Thankfully, doing both is easy when you use the tips above. That way, you can focus on making memories with your kids, rather than stressing about finances and other worries.

Blog post by Leslie Campos at


Hi, I’m Chantal. I’m a mom of two, self proclaimed naturalista, and Author of Growing Girls With Curls: Short Stories For Girls of Color. Being a mom is hard. Pair that with being a single, black, millennial in America and it’s a whole different monster. Feel free to join my mailing list and follow along as I blog through this crazy thing called life.

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