The summer holidays are almost at an end, but unfortunately, many parents could find that their financial headache is only just beginning. Are you ready to foot the bill from a summer of fun?
Research from Post Office Money shows that parents expected to spend £500 on entertaining the kids over the summer – an increase of 37% over the last five years – and many of them will be feeling the impact on their wallets long into the new school year. Indeed, 30% of parents surveyed spent more than they'd budgeted for this time last year, so it could well take time for the bill to be fully repaid.
It can be easy to see how those summer costs can ramp up, too. All that entertainment definitely comes at a price, with 46% paying for family days out to attractions, 41% covering the cost of meals out, and 30% of parents forking out for expensive summer holidays abroad. And that's before the extra spend of £59 on other people's children, £96 on childcare and £129 on fuel.
It can all add up, and some will go to extreme lengths to cover the cost, too: while 26% thought they'd probably end up dipping into their savings, a further 21% resigned themselves to the fact that they'd have to take a complete break from saving over the summer break.
Another 23% assumed they'd rely on their credit cards and 21% planned to work overtime to make ends meet. However, a particularly desperate 8% said they'd consider skipping the mortgage payment, and 6% said they'd have to skip household bills just to cover the cost of summer.
Pete Wood, of Post Office Money, commented on the findings: "As tans begin to fade, many parents might also be feeling the chill from their bank balance. While everyone enjoys making summer memories with their family, it's best to make sure you don't jeopardise your long-term family finances.
"For those that have over-indulged, now is the time to take stock and tighten the purse strings. Cutting back on non-essentials is a good place to start recouping the cost of summer fun. If possible, start putting a small amount away regularly now so that when half-term hits, you're less likely to feel the financial pressure."
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