The average hard-working family spends nearly £5,000 a year on holidays, a study has found.
From ice-creams to sun loungers and day trips to flights, families will take two holidays a year, which sees parents cough up £2,417 for each nine day-long vacation.
Researchers polling 2,000 mums and dads found they will spend £363.74 on flights, £439.57 on accommodation and £49.29 on toys for the beach or to take home with them during each break.
A further £193.97 will be splurged on day trips, £31.61 on souvenirs and £184.04 on car hire, taxis and public transport.
The research was commissioned by Expedia to launch their Add-on Advantage, which is a new feature giving travellers access to discounts for thousands of hotels after booking a flight, car or package on the site.
Family man and former pop sensation Peter Andre, said: “Booking a holiday is almost as exciting as going.
“I always spend quite a long time doing my research, so I know I’ve found the best place possible for me and the kids.
“There’s nothing better than being able to spend time together, away from the daily grind.
“I’ve always wanted a big family but with so many little people around the costs can creep up quickly.
“Expedia’s Add-on Advantage will hopefully make things a bit easier for those looking to travel, particularly in peak time.”
Activities to keep the kids entertained will cost a whopping £225.67 per trip, with families spoiling themselves on dinners out costing £220.34.
The research also found six in 10 can’t actually afford to take their children away during the school summer holiday.
As a result, two-thirds of parents agree it’s usually more cost-effective to be fined for taking their child out of school during term-time than to holiday during the summer break.
In fact, two fifths would happily accept the fine to take their child out of school for a holiday, with half saying it’s often the cheaper option.
Four in 10 of these parents would take the hit because it’s quieter to holiday outside of term time while a quarter can’t get the time off work during the school summer holidays.
But while more than half of parents will scrimp and save to afford the family holiday, one third will put the expense on a credit card in order to afford it.
It worth it for most though with 63 per cent of mums and dads agreeing a trip with the kids is their only opportunity for quality time together.
And eight in 10 reckon a family holiday is good for your mental and physical wellbeing, as well as being an important break away from the humdrum of everyday life.
It also emerged booking nearly six months in advance for both flights and accommodation is crucial, with both being the aspects of a holiday parents are more likely to budget for.
In fact, one fifth will even set a spending limit for snacks and ice-cream, with one in 10 mums and dads accounting for a spend on toys.
However, 83 per cent confessed they will normally go over budget by a surprising £240 per trip.
As a result, more than two-thirds have had to make personal sacrifices in order to afford a holiday, with nearly half taking up extra work and an equal number cutting back on their socialising habits.
Fifty-three per cent have held back splashing out on personal treats with one quarter putting their wellness at risk by cancelling a gym membership.
Aaron Price, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing at Brand Expedia, said: “We understand how important holidays are to a family.
“They give us the opportunity to spend quality time together and make new memories with our loved ones, which can sometimes be quite rare.
“Going away shouldn’t have to cost the earth and the Add-on Advantage aims ease the financial strain, whilst giving travellers more flexibility and the time to book the best holiday for them.”
Breakdown of the cost of a family holiday:
Day trips/excursions £193.97
Meals out £220.34
Car hire £128.20
Alcoholic drinks £47.50
Soft drinks £43.04
Food (self-catered) £59.45
Toys for the beach £25.12
Toys to take home £24.17
Sun loungers £23.33
Public transport such as busses or trains £27.78
Gifts for friends/family back home £30.02
Body boards £20.71
Snorkelling equipment £21.55