New study looks at what parents abroad spend on entertaining their kids

An online travel agency which specialises in cruises has just completed a new study which has revealed that an average of £201.32 is spent by British families to keep their kids entertained on holiday. Over a third also admit that they had not budgeted for this and the extra costs have left them short.

The cruise company have timed their study to tie in with the approaching summer break, when millions of British families will be flying off abroad. The study takes a close look at both the spending and travelling habits of UK families abroad, and what they are prepared to spend to keep their little ones happy.

With the summer holidays just around the corner, an online cruising travel agency has taken a closer look into British parents’ travelling habits when it comes to entertaining their kids abroad; particularly focussing on how much parents are willing to spend to keep their children busy on holiday.

The study revealed that the average parent spends £201.32 when on holiday abroad solely on keeping their child entertained; with ‘excursions’ being amongst the most popular extra activities paid for to keep kids busy.

The study, conducted by, polled 1,257 British holidaymakers with at least one child aged five or over; all of whom had been on holiday abroad as a family at least once in the last 18 months. The study aimed to look more into the spending habits of parents while on holiday, particularly when it came to spending dedicated to their children.

The respondents were first asked, ‘Do you ever spend money when on holiday abroad purely on items/ activities to keep you child (children) entertained?’ to which the vast majority, 64%, said ‘yes’.

These respondents were then asked to specify what they had spent money on to keep their children entertained on their last trip abroad. According to the results, the top five items/activities that parents pay for when on holiday, purely to keep their children entertained, were as follows:

1.       Excursions – 44%

2.       Beach Games (ball, rackets, etc.) – 39%

3.       Theme Parks/ Water Parks– 27%

4.       Group Activities – 21%

5.       Shows/ Exhibitions – 17%

The respondents were then asked to estimate how much they had spent on items or activities to keep their children entertained on their last trip abroad. After taking all answers into account, the study revealed that British parents spend an average of ‘£201.32’ per holiday keeping their kids busy.

Furthermore, when the respondents were asked if they had budgeted in advance for the cost of entertaining their children abroad, over a third, 35%, of respondents said ‘no’. Furthermore, over half, 53%, of those who had spent extra money on entertaining their children admitted that they had chosen a resort/ holiday style specifically designed to keep their kids busy.

Steph Curtin, Cruise Development Manager of, spoke about the findings:

“Taking the kids on holiday can be costly, particularly when you factor in how much it can cost to keep them happy- which as this study shows isn’t cheap! Over £200 on activities or items to keep the kids happy is a serious amount of money on top of the cost of a holiday, and to see that one in three parents don’t budget for the extra cost is worrying. It’s important that you keep this cost in mind when booking your holiday, and choosing a holiday designed around the kids can be a great way of keeping costs down. There are plenty of resorts and cruises available which offer plenty of activities included in the cost of booking, with all-inclusive options also popular. Opting for one of these means you know exactly how much you’ll be paying before heading off, and ensures that your kids will have plenty to do when you’re there!”