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Just a moan about no holiday....for the 8th year

75 replies

rolledup · 26/05/2023 05:53

We've not been able to go away on holiday for 8 years. Just never been able to get time off or afford it. We have no family support for childcare do work round it meaning reduced hours and working opposite so as a daily we get little time off all together. All our immediate friends are going abroad this year and I can't help but feel a bit jealous. I would love a break away but we just can't find spare money or time. Everything costs so much and I'm thankful we can afford our bills but it's pretty much pay goes in and then straight out. I had a look at weekend aways and even those are extortionate. It's hard now as the children talk about why are we not going away, I feel like I'm failing as a parent.

I was with friends at the weekend and they spoke of new furniture, new cars, beauty treatments plus going abroad for two weeks in summer. I am really happy for them but came away feeling rather rubbish. We both work in full time roles in professional settings. We've got degrees, I'm in a senior position yet we have no room for further progression. Our children do not go without and we do manage days out and activities but I really feel for them as when they go back to school after the break they will be either the only ones or some of their very few who won't have been away. We live in a middle class area so surrounded by wealth. We did look at moving but are all settled here.

It's just a moan really. I know how fortunate we are having a safe home and food on the table but the relentless ways can be hard.

OP posts:
Hothotdamage · 26/05/2023 06:00

Sounds difficult, I sympathize having no holiday. It's what alot look forward to a break away. I'm guessing you have high costs , pop along to money matters if you want some advice.

Hecate01 · 26/05/2023 06:01

I'd say you have three options. Increase your income, move to somewhere more affordable or suck it up and carry on as you are.

I don't earn a fantastic wage but because of the area that I live in we are able to afford things that I wouldn't be able to if I moved to a better house in a better area. It's about what's more important to you.

Tudorfish · 26/05/2023 06:06

How many kids do you have?

rolledup · 26/05/2023 06:10

Two, both planned. We were really hammered by the childcare costs for years. For a long time we were 750 monthly in childcare. It's reduced but the money goes on bills and food!

Even to move would cost a fortune which we do not have. We are still in our starter home with no really ways of moving. The house is okay but we've outgrown it. I am ware we are incredibly fortunate to own, it's a tiny house nothing grand in comparison to our peers.

We are definitely the poor friends in our circles, no one ever makes any comments but it's the elephant in the room.

OP posts:
ZoeQ90 · 26/05/2023 06:15

Would you consider camping? It's not for everyone but can be very cheap and you can get equipment secondhand. Even just one night away and change of scenery can feel like a real break.

ColouringPencils · 26/05/2023 06:17

That sounds very tiring, sorry you can't get a break. Have you looked into things like camping (assuming there will be loads of camping stuff available to borrow amongst your middle class friends!). We are staying somewhere 'wild' this weekend and our pitch is only £20 a night. Apart from the outlay of stuff, which you can possibly borrow, it can be a really cheap way to get away.

cocksstrideintheevening · 26/05/2023 06:19

Why is there no room for progression? The easiest way to increase your salary is to move job. Have you looked into that?

Mnusernc · 26/05/2023 06:21

Can we find you a holiday? Sure we can find something reasonable if you tell us what you like?

Ragwort · 26/05/2023 06:24

I find it odd that you are the 'only' people in your circle not to have a holiday ... you must have a very restricted pool of friends? In my circle there are huge variances ... some people go on massive long haul trips and others don't even get a day out to the nearest town. I guess what I am trying to say, clumsily, it's that it's good to have a range of friends so you are not 'comparing' yourselves to what others have (or don't have).
And maybe think about relocating as a PP suggested, I know it's a long term solution but we moved from the expensive south east to a much cheaper part of the country and our life style is so much better ... yes of course we had to leave friends and make new ones but we have no regrets.

PermanentTemporary · 26/05/2023 06:24

Yes you're definitely allowed to moan. When we were really skint we at least had grandparents who kindly took ds away for a week so at least he got a trip away. I totally get what you mean about all the other kids going on about 2 weeks in Spain etc. It's true though as a child whose family got very cash poor as i got to secondary school age, when you don't go away much things like the day trips become huge memories - I have almost total recall of a day on Camber Sands with my mum as a kid, it was brilliant.

For us, as things improved a bit with less childcare etc we did manage to start camping but only because we also had a car (thanks to grandparents again...)

A bit random but do consider something like Scouts if you possibly can - again, some fantastic chances for the kids to be away, including international camps. You just have to be tough and make yourself ask the leaders whether there's any financial support for those.

rolledup · 26/05/2023 06:25

I have just been looking at camping and some one night stays in a hotel.
I'm not even fussed where, anywhere in Scotland would be amazing.

I'm at the top of my banding in a specialised role. If I were to leave it I'd have to go back to trainee wages as it's quite niche what I do.

OP posts:
Mintyt · 26/05/2023 06:26

I hear you and it's rubbish, I was the same for years with 3 young children. The Sun £9.50 holidays are your friend, I now save them for my son and his family, they are affordable because you can choose at weekend or weekday. We also collect the vouchers for Lego land and Aulton towers

Jenn500 · 26/05/2023 06:26

I don’t understand how you can’t afford anything but bills with two full time salaries in good jobs. How much is your mortgage?

rolledup · 26/05/2023 06:28

Sorry just up add.
We really struggle to cover childcare in the school holidays, between us we get 11 weeks per year which doesn't even cover it so we rarely get time off together. We do use holiday clubs but they are few and far between, only do the hours 10-2 or 4 and cost a fair bit.

OP posts:
Overthebow · 26/05/2023 06:30

Have you looked at holiday parks? Book in advance for next year and there are some good deals around. I’m assuming your kids are quite young as need childcare, the parks are great for children with lots of activities.

SunshineLollipopsAndRainbows · 26/05/2023 06:31

Do you shop at Tescos OP? Until mid June the Clubcard vouchers are worth 3 times their face value. After that it will be twice the face value. DH & I have done pretty well out of them ( it also helps that DD14’s mobile is with Tescos). A few years back we had saved enough to stay in a 5 star hotel on Canary Wharf & do a couple of West End shows.

GoodQuestion01 · 26/05/2023 06:31

Can you afford even a caravan holiday? Some of the sites let you go for a weekend or 4 nights. It is still a lot of fun. I’m not sure how old your dc are but mine would prefer a cheap and cheerful weekend away to abroad (hate the beach and the heat.)

GoodQuestion01 · 26/05/2023 06:33

I know three families who go camping several times a year. I have never thought it is to do with money. I think they just love it!

Trainstrike · 26/05/2023 06:37

Yes it is crap isn't it. We're managing to get away for the first time in 6 years this year but that's only as childcare bills have finally reduced.

Parkdean have offers on at the moment for weekends starting at £99, the cheapest ones are usually on the Scottish and Welsh coasts if that helps.

rolledup · 26/05/2023 06:39

We got together in our thirties so only bought our property a few years ago. I feel that those around us have been together for twenty plus years so had more time to build up on homes and savings.

Anyway, I will look at some cheap deals even if it's two nights at a weekend. My husband finishes early to collect the children from school so has to work at weeks a to try and get his hours up. It does feel like a slog but it will ease as the years go on.

OP posts:
Alongtimelonely · 26/05/2023 06:41

It sounds relentless, I’m sorry. Did you consider a house swap? Or could you go and stay with family elsewhere in the UK just to get away?

Scrambledchickens · 26/05/2023 06:47

Have you thought about going away with friends? we do one holiday with friends each year and stay in a large holiday home which costs £1200 split between 3 families, so £400 accommodation. We all have an online shop delivered and just chill out. Honestly it’s great and the kids all have friends to play with. It’s very rural so no pressure to do expensive days out/ meals etc.
The key is to pick families you all genuinely like.

BreeTown · 26/05/2023 06:47

Same as you, we haven't been on holiday in years. The company I work for pay the lowest salary they can get away with, but I suspect not for higher up management. As one of them was talking to a couple of us (overworked, underpaid us) about how he had booked 5 holidays to go away with family for this year. Two of them abroad. Hmm He kept going on and on about them.
I felt like screaming 'Know your audience!'.

doubleoseven · 26/05/2023 06:48

I did lots of cheap caravan holidays as a single parent. Always rented privately through Often half the price of the generic ones at holiday parks and usually much nicer with loads of extras like board games/books etc. We rented one to go to Blackpool last year and it had a big private garden, built in Bluetooth speakers and flat screen tv's in every room, cost £450 for a weekend, but that was a brand new, very modern caravan. You can hire them cheaper.

treacledan71 · 26/05/2023 06:49

I have not been abroad for 20 years. We do try and manage a UK holiday. Book well in advance and sometimes hotels come out cheaper although obviously food is more than. Say only 4 or 5 days though. Go say Sunday to Friday. Weekends are expensive DC older now so not bothered kids clubs etc. I work with someone who was shocked I have not gone abroad but found out his parents pay most of their holidays. They do go with them but seems to work. They just pay a bit towards it.

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