Summer holidays will cost £8.6bn to UK parents

Published on 1 January 1970 by Raffick Marday

British families are expected to spend £8.6bn on childcare and entertainment this summer, according to a report on the ‘Cost of Children’ by insurer LV=.

With children having on average 42 days off school, the research revealed that summer time is an expensive as well as stressful period for many parents in the UK. An average of £660 per child will be spent over the holidays, including £246 on childcare and £414 on entertainment.

93% of parents surveyed said they will be spending extra on children's entertainment. 38% stated that costs associated with the summer holiday are unaffordable, with nearly half of those questioned stating they will need to pay for childcare during this period. Only 10% of them will be helped by having their extended family help babysit.

The LV= research suggests there won’t be holidays for the 55% of parents with children under 18, and that 29% of families are not planning on going for a summer break within the UK.

Despite this trend, British parents are introducing different and innovative ways to entertain their children. Among other choices, 63% of them said they will try activities such as cooking, drawing, painting and crafts. 59% are taking advantage of discount offers for museums and parks.

"It is a shame that so many of those parents struggling on a minimum wage will have to choose whether to stay at home to entertain their children, or fork out for expensive childcare this summer," said Barnardo's assistant director of policy and research, Neera Sharma.

Sharma said that analysis by the OECD shows that Britain has some of the most expensive childcare in the developed world, causing significant disincentives to work for parents on low and middle incomes.

Considering the figures involved, parents who are willing pay significantly for their child’s entertainment needs may have to look into securing loans or getting hold of a prepaid credit card.


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