With the school holidays soon approaching, MoneySuperMarket research reveals that parents are spending an extra £126.27 per child, per week during the summer break – leaving over half of parents (58%) worried about their finances.
With the average family having 1.9 children2, parents can face up to £239.91 per week, or £1,439.48 across the summer holiday in extra costs, including day trips, activities and petrol3. This equates to a total of £1.4 billion every week, or £8.7 billion across the entire holiday4.
As a result, some families are finding alternative ways to pay for the added costs. Over half (58%) of families save throughout the year, and over a third (35%) dip into their savings. Some families borrow money from the bank, with over a quarter (29%) using a credit card and a tenth (8%) taking out a loan to fund the cost of the summer holidays.
Parents in London are spending the most each week, with each child costing £172.74, followed by West Midlands (£140.59). Meanwhile, children in East Anglia rack up the lowest cost, with each child costing their parents £82.73 a week.
Rachel Wait, consumer affairs spokesperson at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Our research reveals that a lot of parents feel the financial pinch of the summer holidays, with over a third (35%) dipping into their savings. However, there are ways to plan ahead and help you feel on top of your finances.
“One of the best ways is to set aside money in advance each month, so that you have a separate pot of savings to use during the summer. Alternatively, you could consider taking out a 0% credit card so that you can spread out any costs over a certain period of time. However, only do this if you can afford to pay at least the minimum repayment each month and can be sure of paying off the balance in full before the 0% interest ends.
“Another option is to look at whether your current account is still meeting your current needs. If not, you could look into current accounts with a cashback incentive or one that offers an interest and fee-free overdraft – this way, you’ll have an extra cushion to full back on without being charged additional interest.”
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