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How do you manage a family holiday as a lone parent?

(44 Posts)
minkulus Sun 17-Mar-13 21:06:31

I have been separated from my husband since December and am just starting to get my head together enough to contemplate a summer holiday. Can I ask how other lone parents manage it, both in energy, logistics and financially?!
Are there any good companies that are geared up for cash strapped single mums? The ones I have seen are all very expensive!
Also my two are very different ages 2 1/2 and 8 so their interests and needs vary greatly!
Thanks for any advice.

onoroff Sun 24-Mar-13 21:41:10

I took my Dd on holiday on my own last year for the 1st time. We had a lovely time, I would do it again and I would not be nervous of doing so. However, I was a little lonely in the evenings. No different to home I guess but it would have been nice to sit outside and have a glass of wine with someone!

minkulus Sun 24-Mar-13 21:33:18

Wow! So many really positive outlooks, thanks so much! I am still really nervous about doing it solo but as some posters have pointed out its not that different from dragging around a not very helpful or proactive DH or DP! So all I need now is a good kick up the bum and to decide what I want to do! I have seen a few cottages near to days out / attractions so will probably try that first: toe in the water etc! Mumsnet rocks!

coribells Sun 24-Mar-13 20:23:54

Like the look of Wickstead too

coribells Sun 24-Mar-13 19:25:01

whoops I didn't check whether it clashes with the school fair, am going anyway.wink

Kewcumber Sun 24-Mar-13 17:33:53

bugger can't do it this year either - clashes with bleedin school fair again. NExt year camping gets priority over school fair.

We do go to the Wickstead campfest at August bank hols with them every year.

Kewcumber Sun 24-Mar-13 17:20:11

if we manage to book it Coribell I'll PM you and you can reveal the real you!

coribells Sun 24-Mar-13 17:13:47

ooh kewcumber, might see you in the forest this year then !!!BTW , I am a MN oldie, I lurked (may have even posted ) when you were getting ready to adopt .

Teahouse Sun 24-Mar-13 16:21:02

I have never been able to afford holidays as an LP. My DCs went on holiday occasionally with their dad and step-mum, and I did days out..far cheaper, and easier to negotiate around diverse interests.

daisydoodoo Sun 24-Mar-13 16:19:28

I go away a fair bit with my dc. Its easy. The most difficult person to cater fir used to be h. So now we get to go and do all the things we wanted to do but didn't.

Ive taken them to butlins, Cornwall, Devon, package holidays in Greece turkey Spain. Ive even done long haul to America and Perth in Australia.

I have 4 dc, now 15, 11, 7 and 3.

Fluffy1234 Sun 24-Mar-13 16:15:16

When I was a lone parent I collected the Sun newspaper tokens and went to Pontins and on a Haven holiday. We enjoyed the swimming pools and amusements and also did lots of days out and got ice-cream and chips.

Fleecyslippers Sun 24-Mar-13 16:09:26

Ignore Xenia. She regularly trolls around this and other forums belittling anyone who doesn't earn a 6 figure salary. You should see her in action on one of the divorce forums wink

I'm taking mine abroad this year. Lots of research to find a really well located hotel with a 'safe' walk into the town centre, going to go half board so no wandering around in the evenings looking for restaurants and the all important kids club wink

I am a little nervous but the kids levels of excitement cancels that out. (As does the look on financially abusive Exs face when the kids told him grin )

exoticfruits Sun 24-Mar-13 16:05:14

It is the adult who wants the skiing and Antigua-DCs are just as happy in the New Forest-people kid themselves they are doing it for the DCs when in actual fact it is for them. We did a lot in Cumbria -and if you stay outside the Lake District you can get cottages much cheaper.

Kewcumber Sun 24-Mar-13 15:48:42

Coribells - we go on the new forest trip every year - love love love it. Couldn't go last year as it clashed with something but hopefully will go this year.

Yes every woman who never takes any time off can afford to take their 15 children skiing and to Antigua every year. Every woman who takes any time off at all struggles forever after to take children on a camping weekend. Such is the gospel according to Xenia. Amen

Yup thats the way it works for most people.

exoticfruits Sun 24-Mar-13 12:24:16

Can you find a group. I didn't have anyone to ski with and found a group with children. I didn't know any of them and yet it worked out well and much cheaper. (and I did give up work when DS was little grin)

coribells Sun 24-Mar-13 12:21:06

I never gave up work either, BUT the problem is I don't have any family to go away with. I've been away with friends before when the kids wee younger but can't rely on them all time. Am hoping singlewithkids with be a solution. Would like to try a festival this year as well. Any one up for that?

exoticfruits Sun 24-Mar-13 06:55:35

Have you got any friends that you can go with? Big houses to rent seem expensive but when you divide the cost by 3 it is more affordable than getting a small one on your own. We then had a kitty for food. You do have to choose the right people, fairly laid back ones who don't want to spend a lot of money. The children amused themselves, we once had 7 and you have adult company in the evenings. I once did similar abroad with a friend , her child, her father and her cousin and we got a villa as a last minute bargain. However it is not the best to wait last minute and small children do not want or need the sun, it is much simpler to be a car journey away.

exoticfruits Sat 23-Mar-13 22:52:14

Xenia can never resist. I found the best, most enjoyable way, as a single parent was to rent a big house with other families- not necessarily single parents.
I also took him skiing- again with a group. It was best for us because he was an only child and he got company.

girliefriend Sat 23-Mar-13 14:10:38

Xenia - not sure that comment was entirely necessary hmm

BeGoodElliot Sat 23-Mar-13 14:03:13

When dd was younger we did lots of Haven type holidays. The plus side being there was always some for of entertainment so even if I felt like a break/was tired I could sit with a drink and dd would happily play/watch a show/or whatever.

I also agree with going away with friends/family if that's an option especially if they have other children. This worked for us as I only have dd and worry she will get bored with just me!

Last summer we booked through lowcostholidays for a cheap all inclusive week in Spain. They do lone parent rooms where there is no supplement for only having one adult. Worked out really well, hundreds of pounds cheaper than for the same holiday with Thomas cook etc

wild Sat 23-Mar-13 13:55:12

x post with girlie - the log cabin break was fab!

wild Sat 23-Mar-13 13:54:22

xenia are you a lone parent?
I have taken my dc camping, to festivals and to a log cabin in the woods. I like to go away at Christmas, in particular. Mostly I just enjoy being off work and spending time with them, it doesn't really bother me where

girliefriend Sat 23-Mar-13 13:53:08

I have done a couple of the single with kids holidays and always had a good time. Dd loves having other kids about and it's a nice way to meet other single parents as well.

This year I have booked a log cabin for a week in may and we are going with another single mum and her kids. Next year I am hoping to take dd abroad, have started saving now!! The parkdean holidays look nice but better for value the further you can book in advance. The log cabin one I have booked is with a company called hurst view leisure ltd and costs £320 for 4 nights which split between me and my friend isn't too bad. They also had caravans which I think were £250 for four nights.

HerrenaHarridan Sat 23-Mar-13 13:46:13

Why not! We can pick somewhere approx in the middle of us both and spilt the deposit so we are both committed.

It would be an adventure.

I live near edinburgh, pm me if you want smile

Yes I can see that the budgeting issue could be difficult but not insurmountable approach friend most likely to be interested and on your level and say something like

I really want to take kids on holiday this year but its so expensive and a little intimidating doing it alone, I bet it would be cheaper a if we split costs, I could probably afford x

susiedaisy Sat 23-Mar-13 13:14:06

The last two years I've gone with my dc and my parents sharing a caravan, this year I'm hoping to go to London for a few nights in a cheapish hotel with a friend and her dc and do a few of the museums my friend had offered to drive which is a big help, the museums will be free and we will eat cheaply, so it shouldn't be too bad!

minkulus Sat 23-Mar-13 13:13:13

HerrenaH you might just be on! It's not that my friends are rubbish, it's just my guilt at holding them back prevents me from suggesting it. Also they have drastically different ideas of budget and that's a bit awkward!
I will take a better look at single with kids as it seems to get the thumbs up on here! Mind you I've got 3 weeks of easterholidays to get through first, in this weather!!

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