Why do I love camping so much? It is the perfect frugal vacation – it is a great way my family can have a fun vacation without breaking the bank. While theme parks and destination vacations are a lot of fun (who doesn’t love to be pampered), in this economy they aren’t always an option. You can camp at a national park, at a campground, or even have a staycation in your own yard!
Because we have 5 kids, it can get really expensive to vacation. For example, if we were to stay in a hotel we need more than one room. One room just doesn’t fit all of us comfortably (especially with 4 out of 5 kids being teenagers), so camping is a much more frugal vacation. Of course there is the initial expense of buying a tent but that tent will last for years and years. My husband and I sleep on an air mattress, but the kids are young – they don’t mind sleeping on the ground. Overall, camping equipment is a great investment in your family’s future of fun.
Part of the fun of camping is making delicious food over the campfire or grill. Let’s be honest, it really is all about the smores. Cooking while camping doesn’t cost any more than eating at home, and everyone in the family can pitch in to help. Eating out is so expensive. Even a meal at McDonald’s costs our family $40 – $50, and that’s for fast food. Imagine how much it would cost to eat out 3 meals a day for an entire week. We can take that same $40.00 and buy a lot more food (as well as healthier food), and cook it ourselves. There are a lot of fantastic camping recipes you can try.
Think about all of the free activities that you and your family can do while camping. Sitting around the campfire (unplugged) and just talking is a great way to reconnect as a family. Kids love to sing songs, play games, and spend time together. During the day there’s nature walks, hikes, bike riding, swimming, and fishing, and you could even bring gloves for softball. Do you love the idea of a modern-day treasure hunt? If so, then geocaching is an activity your entire family can enjoy.
Camping season right around the corner, now is the time to start planning your trips. Many campgrounds require reservations and I’m sure you don’t want to miss out on a great frugal vacation!