While kids across the UK get excited about the six-week summer break, parents can be excused for a numbing sense of dread.
According to the latest research from Post Office Money, the cost of keeping the kids entertained over the summer holidays has risen by 25% over the past year. Parents are set to spend £7.8 billion getting them out of the house and away from their screens.
The Post Office’s Parents’ Summer Spending report claims parents will typically be splashing out £584 and although more than half (55%) of families think they have enough to cover the costs, the average amount they have set aside is only £316 – just 53% of the forecasted bill.
Parents say the two most significant expenses are likely to be eating out and paying entrance fees for tourist attractions.
When fuel costs (£117), treating their children’s friends (£86) and childcare (£93) are factored in, the total summer expenditure rises to £980. To meet these costs 28% of families will dip into their savings, 24% will use a credit card, 18% will work overtime, while 12% will sell things online to raise the funds. One in 10 (8%) will borrow money from family or friends.
As a result of the expense, a quarter (23%) of parents are unable to save any money for themselves over this period, while more than half (55%) say it will reduce the amount they are able to put away.
Chrysanthy Pispinis, director, Post Office Money, comments: “The school holidays can put real pressure on parents’ wallets. Getting into a habit of saving in advance, and budgeting for what you think you’ll need, can really help cover the cost of summer, especially as it is so easy to overspend.”