How to Keep Kids From Blowing Your Budget This Summer

Posted on 06/04/2014

Get ready to pull those purse strings parents. According to the New York Times entertaining the average kid over the summer costs an average of $601. That money is used to fund camp fees, day trips and baby-sitting. Every parent wants to give their kid the best summer possible, but it's also important not to go broke before the kids go back to school.

Create a Savings Goal
Give your kids something to save for. Set up a summer chore chart using this free printable from Pay them for tasks they complete so they'll have cash for those weekly ice cream outings or trips to the swimming pool.

Apply for Scholarships
Day camps, church camps and YMCA camps all offer scholarships for low income families. Find out if you qualify for financial assistance. That way your kids can still take part in some summer camp fun and you won't have to take out a loan.

Skip the Theme Park
Taking a trip to a theme park may sound like a fun way to spend a summer day, but this is actually the easiest way to bust your budget. Fox Business says this is the most expensive summer activity, costing an average of $208 per child. Instead opt for a community-operated water park or a neighborhood swimming pool.

Sign Up for VBS
Vacation Bible School, or VBS, is a summer tradition for churches across the country. Most are free and welcome children from the community, even if their family's aren't members. Sign your kids up for VBS to give them free structured care for a few hours at a time.

Use What You Have
The answer to affordably entertaining your kids this summer may already be within reach. Check with your gym, your church or your child's school to find out if there are any free activities you can take advantage of this summer. If you're a Bank of America cardholder check out the free Museums on Us program to score free admission one weekend a month.

Get to Know Your Library
Libraries are awesome all year, but especially during the summer. Get the kids involved in summer reading challenges, craft activities or music classes. They're air conditioned and never cost a penny.

By Alison Storm

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Posted on 06.04.14 at 11:31 AM

Only $601? I'm actually shocked it's that low.

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