By Sarah Bridge


Affordable ways to get away at Christmas

Christmas is usually a time when budgets go out of the window, but there are plenty of affordable ways to get away at Christmas if you look in the right places. If you think you can’t afford a holiday – think again! Doing your research well in advance means that there are great savings to be made in your Christmas breaks, meaning more money left over for presents, or less of a dent in your finances come January – winner!

Mini breaks and staycations

After a summer of travel chaos, more of us will be choosing to holiday at home in the UK over the next year. Starting or finishing a holiday in an airport or ferry queue is no fun when you could be exploring the incredible sights, cities and countryside right on our doorstep. Almost half of all adults took a holiday this summer and of those, 84 per cent holidayed in the UK, according to hotel chain Travelodge. To help Brits get away during the rest of the year, Travelodge has released 450,000 rooms for £34 or less across its UK hotels, making a stay for a family of four cheaper than a trip to the cinema! Act fast to get the best rates.

Christmas UK countryside retreat

Travel gifts at Christmas

Giving travel gifts at Christmas is a great way to inspire some amazing trips in the year to come. It’s hardly a co-incidence that many people book their next holidays during the Christmas break! Websites such as Amazon and Pinterest are great for gift inspiration or check out craft website Etsy for the more unique touch. Making your own travel gifts is a great way to save money and make a memorable present: the following are all easy-to-make travel gift ideas for the travellers in your life.

  • Passport covers
  • Personalised travel diaries
  • Currency holders
  • Luggage labels
  • Wallets
  • Photo frames

Christmas cottage UK hotel getaway

Hotel stays at Christmas

Staying at a hotel over Christmas can be an expensive time of year, but if you can book at last minute or be flexible on dates, then you could be in luck. If hotels have any capacity left over just before Christmas itself they could offer you a good rate rather than risk having unsold rooms. If you are happy to stay just after Christmas, in the period known as ‘Twixmas’, you will find rooms are considerably cheaper and you will still get the benefit of the Christmas decorations, menus and festive atmosphere. Equally, if you book well in advance, hotel chains like Travelodge offer discounts to guests who book months ahead of time as it gives them security of knowing the room has been sold.

Cheap flights around Christmas

Budget airlines such as Ryanair, Easyjet, Wizzair and Jet2 are full of amazing deals but you might have to search for them. Top tips include being flexible with your preferred dates and searching the whole month to see the cheapest flights. Search nearby airports for cheaper flights at another airport, but be sure to factor in the cost of travel to the airport when budgeting for your affordable beach holiday. Flights early in the morning or late at night are often the cheapest, but check you’re not spending on expensive taxis or hotels to make the flights. If you aren’t fussy about where you go around the festive season, package holiday providers such as TUI, First Choice, Haven Holidays, Jet2holidays will have great winter sun deals where the flight and hotel are included in the price – check whether transfers are too.

Sunny Maldives holiday home and beach

Travel deals and hacks

Use flight comparison websites such as Skyscanner or CheapFlights to compare airlines. When buying flights or renting cars, book your own travel or rental insurance rather than going via the airline or car hire websites.

See if the same holiday is cheaper on an overseas website. Many travel operators often have different prices for different countries, even though the holiday is exactly the same. This is a wonderful hack for finding cheap luxury holidays.

Christmas fair and family activities

Packages and experiences

If you’re looking to keep the children entertained over the Christmas holidays, then a trip to amusement parks such as Legoland Windsor, Thorpe Park, Alton Towers and Chessington World of Adventures are great options, but often comes with a hefty price tag. By going at off-peak times and booking in advance you can often reduce the cost and find plenty of affordable family holidays perfect for the festive season. Network Rail often offers two-for-one deals on attractions. Check your shopping too – food brands, mobile phones providers, credit cards and supermarkets often have discounted tickets available.


Once you've secure a cheap holiday booking it'll soon be time to start packing yuour suitcases. Don't worry, you can save even more money and time by packing a holiday capsule wardrobe. Also, if you're looking for more ways to save money during the cost of living crisis head to our main cost of living guide to discover saving tips for groceries, household bills, commuting and more. You'll also be able to check out more money-saving articles from our expert journalists.