As the UK’s cost of living pressure feels tougher as prices rose this month, here’s some top tips from Which? to save money and still have a good time during the Easter weekend.
Enjoy a meal out with “kids eat for free” offers
When eating out as a family, it’s worth checking out if nearby restaurants offer discounts for children.
Many restaurants and cafes offer “kids eat for free” during the holidays. As? found several popular chains that offered discounts at certain times, including Yo! Sushi, The Real Greek and Morrisons Cafe.
Visit an amusement park for less
Check the prices of the attractions in advance to save. For example, an adult day card purchased on the day at Alton Towers costs £ 62, but costs only £ 34 when purchased in advance – a saving of 45%.
Shoppers can also save money on outings at theme parks and attractions up and down the country when shopping for groceries in the supermarket. Carex handwashers have half-price entry vouchers for Alton Towers, Chessington World of Adventures and Sea Life Centers and Sanctuaries that are valid until May 31, 2022. At the same time, select Kellogg’s flake packs and snacks offer “adult free” vouchers for Merlin attractions such as valid until June 2022.
Read more: Cost of living: Anything that will cost you more in April
Holders of the Tesco Clubcard can convert points into Tesco Reward Partners coupons, which can be used for as much as three times the savings at theme parks, zoos and other attractions.
Enjoy gallery or museum for free
Many UK national galleries and museums are free to enter and are an easy way to entertain the family for a day out.
As? members highly ranked St. Fagans National Museum of History in Cardiff, Beamish: The Living Museum of the North in Durham County, National Railway Museum in York, Royal Air Force Museum in Cosford, Shropshire and National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.
Just remember that some museums may require visitors to book a free ticket before arrival.
Burn off the Easter chocolate with a little sport
There are many free sports activities available during the holidays. It is worth checking the websites of local municipalities for opportunities, some offer free swimming lessons for children, for example.
Alternatively, Parkrun is a free weekly event held every weekend in hundreds of locations around the UK. There are 5k events on Saturday mornings, and junior runs for children on Sundays.
Tennis for Free also offers free tennis sessions for all ages in public parks around the country.
Watch the latest movies at a discount
Some cinema chains offer discounts on family movies at certain times, usually in the morning.
Odeon’s “Odeon Kids”, Picturehouse’s “Kid’s Club” and Vues “Mini Mornings” all offer discounts for both adults and children. For example, Vue ‘Mini Morning’ tickets cost £ 2.49 or £ 2.99 if you buy online compared to £ 3.49 or £ 3.99 on the spot.
Movie fans can also get cinema discounts with the Gourmet Society and Tastecard food cards. Both offer up to 40% off certain cinema chains and currently offer 90-day free trial periods.
Anyone who purchases a policy through the Compare the Market price comparison website will receive 2-for-1 movie tickets on a Tuesday or Wednesday of a year – if you have purchased a policy recently, check if this offer is available to you.
Look at: How to save money on a low income
Read more: UK energy bills: Why you should pay by direct debit
It is also worth checking if your phone provider offers bio discounts. O2 customers have access to O2 Priority and can often claim free Odeon tickets to use on Sundays and Mondays. Three mobile customers can claim £ 3 adult cinema tickets to Cineworld or Picturehouse using the Three + rewards app and Vodafone customers can get two adult tickets for £ 7 at most Vue cinemas each week, using the My Vodafone app.
See a theatrical performance for less
Although it is usually an expensive excursion, it is possible to buy cheaper theater tickets. Local theaters often host touring West End productions for a fraction of the cost of London shows.
As? found tickets to The Book of Mormon at the Leeds Grand Theater from £ 15, while prices start at £ 40 in London on the same date.
Most theaters offer cheaper tickets for under 30s. For example, the National Theater offers £ 5 tickets if you are under 18 and £ 10 tickets if you are under 26.
Every Monday at noon there are a number of tickets to Disney shows such as The Lion King and Frozen available for £ 25 via DisneyTickets and some shows, including Hamilton, run daily lotteries with winners who can buy tickets for between £ 10 and £ 35 for a show that week .
Apps like TodayTix can save visitors up to 66% on certain shows. As? found tickets for Roald Dahl’s Matilda on Thursday 7 April for £ 25.
Often seats at the back of the theater cost less, but it is worth checking if visibility is obstructed. Seatplan allows visitors to check out the view before buying tickets.
Take the train to save on weekdays
Some train companies offer cheap train travel for children traveling with an adult. For example, the Southeastern, Chiltern Railways, London Northwestern and West Midlands Railway will allow up to four children (aged 5-15) to travel for £ 1 on a one-way or return trip when accompanied by an adult during off-peak hours.
As? found an adult and two children could travel from London to Margate and back on Southeastern services for under £ 30, with children’s tickets costing £ 2. If two adults travel, they can save money with a train card – the card with two together costs £ 30 in advance but also saves a third on train fares for a year.
Read more: Cost of living crisis: Top tips to help your personal finances
National Rail also offers 2-for-1 tickets to a range of attractions across the country, including Thorpe Park, Chessington World of Adventures and the London Zoo when purchased with a train ticket.
Take advantage of local libraries
In addition to borrowing physical books for free, most libraries allow users to borrow e-books and audiobooks. Some may also provide access to digital magazines and newspapers. Check local library offers via the municipality’s website and register for free.
Take advantage of the free parks throughout the UK.
Those looking for adventure can try geocaching – a “treasure hunt for the digital generation”. You can track coordinates on a smartphone app to find hidden boxes, so-called “caches”. The National Trust has recommended 10 places to try geocaching.
Search for free local events
Many municipalities offer free events during school holidays, so it is worth checking out their websites. Search for the municipality’s name followed by “half-time activities” to see what is happening in that area.
For example, the Manchester City Council will hold spring craft sessions and the Haringey Council in London will offer free Easter workshops for teenagers aged 11-16 in creative writing, drama and film.