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Summer Activities for Every Budget

A list of fun summer activities for families no matter their budget. Kids will love these ideas!

Splurge-worthy summer activities

If you have a little extra cash saved up and want to make this a summer to remember, consider taking a family vacation. It could be as exotic as a week in the Caribbean to something practical like a long weekend at a local campground. Either way, the goal is to get out of your normal routine and try something new.

Another fantastic activity idea for school-age kids is a trip to summer camp. Freedom, independence, meeting new friends, learning new skills, and gaining self-confidence are all documented benefits of attending summer camp.

Millions of kids attend summer camps each year. If your child hasn't been before, it’s an experience worth looking into. Get started by asking teachers, friends, and family for recommendations. You can also hop on the web and search camps near me. Some other reliable resources you can turn to include the American Camp Association’s website and summercamps.com.

If you do plan to go on a family vacation or send your child to summer camp this year, communicate with your co-parent beforehand. It’s important to discuss and decide on these matters together, so you can both stay informed, take part in scheduling, and agree on budgets.

starting a garden is a great summer activity

Summer activities close by

If you can’t get out of town, no problem. Chances are, there are lots of fun things to do right in your hometown. As a bonus, many attractions offer special deals for students during the summer. If you’re on a budget, consider looking into these summer activities to see if any are close to home and/or discounted:

  • Local swim club
  • Attractions in your city, like the zoo, museum, or aquarium 
  • Recreational summer sports leagues or day camp programs 
  • Movies, plays, or puppet shows 
  • Batting cages or golf courses 
  • YMCA or YWCA 
  • Gardens 
  • Bowling alleys 
  • Cooking classes 
  • Ice skating or roller skating 
  • Canoeing or kayaking 

you can camp in your backyard for an easy free activity

Free summer activities

Summer is long, and families can’t afford to go broke entertaining their kids every minute of every day. Luckily there are tons of fun and free summer activities for kids that can boost their creativity and their development.

  • Play an old-fashioned board game
  • Camp out in the backyard
  • Go to the park
  • Play frisbee on the beach
  • Fly a kite
  • Watch a movie at home
  • Stargaze at night
  • Have a family dance party
  • Go for a bike ride
  • Visit the library

Need even more suggestions? Check out our blog, 49 Free Summer Activities for Kids.

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