When it comes to taking a break with the family, a fair bit of planning and preparation is usually required. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that families can’t take advantage of a last minute holiday.

In fact, holding your nerve and booking just a few weeks or days in advance gives you the opportunity to experience a completely new kind of holiday, which could include one of these five awesome ideas.


If you’re worried about getting stressed over a last minute deal, then pick a cruise ship holiday. Once you’ve booked your ticket, everything will be taken care of, from accommodation and entertainment to food and drink.

Itineraries are on offer all over the world, but the most popular regions tend to be the culture-packed Mediterranean and the sun-drenched Caribbean. To save money, consider booking a family room with pull-out sofas or pull-down bunk beds instead of two separate cabins.

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CampingVintage Trailer Resort

This is another option that has the potential to be incredibly affordable without compromising your family’s overall experience. Animal-obsessed kids can see their favorite creatures in real life but also learn a lot about the great outdoors too.

The vast majority of Europe loves this kind of holiday and you will find countless campsites with impressive facilities scattered across the United States, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. Instead of buying a load of camping gear, it might be cheaper and easier to book a fully equipped cabin.

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At the other end of the getting-closer-to-nature scale is a safari holiday. Normally, this type of getaway is way over most people’s budget, but find a last-minute deal and the whole family can catch a glimpse of some awe-inspiring animals.

As you would expect, most safari holidays are in Africa, but it is possible to see jaguars in Costa Rica, elephants in Sri Lanka, and tigers in India. However, make sure that you haven’t missed the cut-off for any essential vaccinations, which are often highly recommended in certain rural areas.

Amusement ParksIsland's of Adventure

To cater to kids with bundles of energy and enthusiasm, consider going on an amusement holiday. For example, the theme parks and movie studios of Florida are bound to satisfy restless children but also wear them out enough to sleep at night.

See if you can find any promotions or special offers online and ask whether a discount is available when booking in advance. This might enable you to jump the queue for the most popular rides and attractions too.

We have an entire travel guide to Disney World to help you plan your trip.

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Last but not least, a chilled-out beach retreat will enable you to relax and unwind without a care in the world. Meanwhile, kids can either splash around in the sea or build great big sandcastles.

Across Europe and parts of Asia, all-inclusive deals provide superb value for money. Family-friendly resorts will usually have a kids club too, allowing you and your partner to spend some quality alone time together.

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But the only way you can capitalize on these last-minute ideas is to get busy looking and booking today.

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Get Travel Insurance

Unfortunately, there are a lot of things that can go wrong on any trip. Be prepared for the worst with travel insurance. We use Travelex or Safety Wing (often cheaper).

Book Flights

I use Skyscanner to find flights. I use it so much, I wrote an entire guide to finding cheap flights with Skyscanner!

Book a Place to Stay

I recommend using Expedia.com or Hotels.com for most hotel bookings. I prefer to book directly with Marriott when I stay there because of their excellent military discount.

If you prefer staying in a vacation rental instead, I recommend VRBO.

Rent Clothes

Rent clothes for your trip with Travel Style Expert for only $50 a month! The first 30 days are free!

Choose Activities and Tours

To find great activities in any area I use Get Your Guide and Viator. If we are visiting a city with lots of popular attractions I always check CityPass and GoCard to see if they have discount cards available. Groupon also tends to have a lot of local travel deals.

When I want to book a full-on multi-day tour I use TourRadar. They’ve got fantastic weekly deals. If I am going somewhere in Mexico or the Caribbean I use Apple Vacations.

Rent a Car or Take a Lyft

More often than not Lyft is cheaper than Uber. Use my Lyft link for an $18 credit! For a car rental in any country, I recommend Hertz or Discover Cars.

Save Money on Gas

Upside, a free app gets you cash back on gas! Use promo code RV2Q2 to get an extra 15¢/gal bonus on your first purchase.

Get a Visa

I use iVisa to get all of my Visas.

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