Not every time you travel may be solo. There may be times when you decide to travel with your child, especially if you're s solo mum. Traveling with the family is a fun and enriching bonding experience for everyone. But besides being a fun opportunity to build lasting memories, it can also be a great learning opportunity for the little ones.

When we travel, our leisure activities often revolve around money. From accommodation and food to souvenirs and transportation, every aspect of our journey comes with a cost.

Consider using travel as an opportunity to teach them about money management. This can help them learn to budget effectively, prioritise spending, and handle money wisely, along with many other valuable habits.

I've included six tips below that can help your child form a better relationship with money while travelling.

1. Teach the Importance of Saving

Before you travel, you’re likely going to need to save money for the upcoming trip. This is the perfect time to involve your child in the process since there’s a tangible (and fun!) goal that you’re all working towards.

For starters, teach them why it’s important to save money. Explain the concept of saving in an age-appropriate manner. 

Introduce the concept of delayed gratification to younger children and explain how it can benefit them over time. Teach them the value of restraining themselves from impulsive, short-term purchases in favor of long-term rewards.

For example, instead of buying a toy at the toy shop, suggest they save that money to add to their travel budget in a month or so. Similarly, they could skip eating at their favorite restaurant to save more pocket money for the trip.

If your child receives an allowance, consider discussing the idea of reducing their weekly amount and contributing the difference to the family travel budget—with their permission, of course. If they understand and agree to this, it's a sign they're becoming financially savvy.

By instilling the importance of saving, children can allocate their money to more meaningful endeavors. Travel funds don't have to be the only goal; encourage them to continue saving even after their travels to enhance their financial health.

Want to get your kid to adopt a saving mindset? Click here for more information.

2. Involve Them in Travel Budgeting

A great way to develop your child's real-life financial skills is by involving them in travel budgeting. Unless you have an unlimited budget, you'll likely need to manage your funds carefully during your trip.

Instead of keeping your child out of this important process, include them! Explain the various cost categories involved in travel, and discuss how you plan to allocate your total budget among these categories.

Encourage your children to ask questions about the budget breakdown and listen to any suggestions they may have. This approach will help them understand your decision-making process and teach them valuable skills like prioritization and cost assessment.

In addition to the financial lessons, involving them in the budgeting process fosters transparency and openness within the family. It also helps them know what to expect during the holiday, making them more excited and less likely to be stressed by unexpected surprises.

3. Use Real-Life Math in Transactions

If your child is new to maths, traveling can be a fun way to practice it in real life and introduce the concepts. 

For example, when you buy snacks and drinks at a store, have your child add up the costs to make sure you don't go over budget. This helps them practice math skills.

Another idea is to let your child keep track of daily expenses like food, souvenirs, and activities. This helps them see how money is spent during the trip and makes them more aware of their spending habits whilst giving you more data for the budget plan. 

4. Discuss the Cost and Value of Experiences

Another enriching aspect of traveling with your child is demonstrating the value of experiences. While it's important to stick to a budget, it's equally crucial not to miss out on unique opportunities. Finding a balance is key.

When you have to decide between two similarly-priced tours, you can engage your child in a discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of each, helping them make a thoughtful choice.

It's also important to be mindful of your financial limits. Explaining why you might opt for moderate accommodations instead of luxury or shared hostels can help children appreciate the value of spending wisely.

These conversations not only deepen your child's understanding of what's meaningful versus extravagant but also foster gratitude for the activities chosen during the trip, creating a positive mindset.

5. Teach The Concept of Demand

Another important thing to learn while traveling is understanding why prices can be different in different places. For example, a bottle of water might cost only about a Pound or a Dollar in a normal shop, but in airports, it can be much more expensive—sometimes five times as much for the same thing.

This happens because in airports, there aren't as many choices, so they can charge more. Also, security rules can make it harder to bring your own water, which makes the airport ones even more expensive.

On the other hand, in regular stores, prices are lower because there's more competition and more choices. Teaching your child about this when you travel helps them understand why prices change and how it works, even when you're not traveling.

6. Set a Souvenir Budget

A task that you can give your child when traveling is giving them a limited budget for souvenirs. If you’re like most parents, you’re probably giving your child some pocket money to spend on what they want. 

This fund is a financial cap that your child shouldn't go over. By giving them a limited allowance to work with, you can get your child to limit their spending habits. This can help them become more disciplined and conscious of how they spend, which is a life skill that can be applied in their normal every day life, not just travel. 

I hope this article has given you some examples of teaching your child about money on your next trip. Travelling with your child can be educational but mostly importantly full of lots of fun.