Many mums and dads wonder how to occupy their young children at weekends. Try these five easy and cheap activities.

Movie Night

Even with discounted tickets it can be expensive to go to the cinema because you know the kids will be begging you for snacks, drink and popcorn! So have movie night at your own house. Make your own popcorn, buy some cheap drink and download a free film from one of the many free movie websites available. It’s perfectly legal and a great way to save money on movie night.

Plant A Garden

The best way to get your child to eat their vegetables is to get them to grow their own! Start sowing seeds this winter and then they’ll be ready for the outdoor garden project next summer This will also give your children something to occupy themselves with during next years summer holidays. Plan ahead I say! Plus, buying seeds and growing your own food is far cheaper than buying full grown veggies, so you will save money on your grocery bill later on next year too.

Go Camping Inside

You can build a fort or camp inside or outside, but if the weather is crummy, this can be a fun inside activity. Pull chairs together and drape blankets over them. Then give the kids a torch and a bag of snacks and encourage them to ‘go camping’

Family Game or Show

Another fun and inexpensive thing to do are to play traditional board game, get yourself up in the loft I’m sure most of your have one or two of your old games hidden away. Many families forget how much fun this is for children as modern kids only seem to experience electronic games like the Xbox or PlayStation. If your children are young enough you could empower them to narrate and act out a play. Give them a few hours to rehearse and use this time to relax and put your feet up!

Travel out of the country without leaving home

Why not have a themed evening? It could be anything like Chinese, American, Spanish, Italian or even a Mexican. Get everyone dressing up, even you! If you chose something like a Mexican evening you could wear cheap sombreros from the pound shop or take you kids in search of outfits from charity shops.  You can then tuck the outfits away ready for a fancy dress party! Theme the food too, so if you chose Mexican you could make burritos and tacos which would be a cheap meal and also introduce your kids to new tastes.

This is just a small sample of ways to save money and entertaining your children. Be creative and think of other ways you can save money too. Make it fun for your kids and they won’t drive you crazy at weekends because they are bored. Cherish this time together, because soon they’ll be all grown up!


Peter has received many accreditation's including many from the Times Online. As founder of You Could Save (2005) , What Stationers (2007) and more recently, Peter Millikin (2018). Peter regularly helps consumers and national organisation ‘save money’. He believes that the only successful way to bring people together online is to provide an open marketplace where people can all work together in a friendly, unbiased environment.

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