How much does summer cost you?

Ah, to be a child again. How simple and stress-free life was. I remember well that feeling of giddiness as weeks of summer holiday loomed before you.

No more early mornings, plenty of playing outside with your mates and endless hours of fun and games. But it’s not quite the same for modern day youngsters with two full-time working parents as, for the majority of the holidays, our two have to get up the same time as if they were going to school so they can be dropped off at some holiday club or other.

It’s lovely to have quality time off with your children, but unless you’re in the teaching profession or some other job where you get the summer off, the reality is you just can’t take six weeks of holiday off to look after them.

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Collectively, parents across the UK will spend £11bn during the summer holidays and the average parent will fork out £1,461 in an effort to keep their children entertained over the summer.

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This expenditure includes the cost of a holiday, day trips, treats and childcare costs according to a spending survey carried out by Travelodge. The research shows the average working parent will book 10 days holiday over the summer to look after their children. That’s pretty spot on in our household.

However, the findings also show that the average family will spend around £157 on childcare costs over the summer.

Er, that’s certainly not the case for us as with two children and a few weeks of clubs to pay for, our summer childcare expense will be considerably more. The trade-off when you want to save spending so much on holiday care is to sacrifice family time and for each parent to book separate time off.

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The other downside is one poor parent still has to get up and go to work while their partner and children are fast asleep in bed.

We began the summer holidays with that poor muggins being me. While Hubby and our twosome enjoyed days out, I slaved away at work to put food on our table.

Parenthood may seem like a merry-go-round of expensive pursuits and from the moment they are born, but it’s important to live in the moment and spend meaningful time with your children and enjoying the simple pleasures in life instead of constantly saying: “Hurry up!”

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