Patagonia is a wonderful place to visit with your family. This remote, rugged landscape is filled with opportunities for adventure. From hiking to kayaking, climbing to cycling, there’s a wealth of outdoor activities to keep the kids entertained. With so much to do and see, Patagonia is certain to capture your children’s imagination. However, many see peak season family holidays to Patagonia is a major investment. After all, to get to the heart of this untouched, raw landscape, it requires a far amount of traveling – which means that costs can rack up. Nonetheless, there are ways you can seek to save, even during spring and summer break. Read on to find out our top five peso-pinching tips.
Pick your moment
If you want to get the best deals on peak season family holidays, it’s best to book far in advance. Furthermore, midweek travel tends to be cheaper than traveling on the weekend, so look out for departure dates on Wednesday and Thursdays. Depending on your school holiday dates, traveling in late May and late August also tends to be cheaper. However, if you can’t commit to booking too far in advance, occasionally there are more inexpensive deals during the middle of the month.
2. Buy all your flights together
Often, the easiest way to travel with kids is by plane. Although domestic flights are more expensive than buses, a good tip is to book your international flights and domestic flights together. Some major airlines have alliances with local carriers, so you can buy multi-destination tickets or add domestic flights for a small extra charge. Another hot tip for saving is to look at lesser known airlines. For example, Sky Airline fly weekly to Puerto Natales, a small town near the Torres del Paine national.
3. Consider long-haul buses
If your children are a little older, catching long-haul buses is a great way to save. Furthermore, long distance buses in Argentina and Chile are a different affair than in United States and Europe. Often, bus companies will provide three classes: cama, semi-cama and cama executivo, which refers to how much your seat reclines. If you opt for the higher end tickets, then your seat will recline all the way. Therefore, if you’re traveling on an overnight bus service to Patagonia from Santiago or Buenos Aires, you can actually have a very comfortable journey. Some companies will even serve a hot meal and wine – but be sure to check what’s included and bring snacks.
4. Try a refugio
Some families may find that camping is a little ambitious, especially if you’re traveling with very small children. On the flip side, hotels can be expensive during peak season, which makes things difficult if you’re on a budget. However, there is another option – refugios. These simple accommodations are dormitory-style huts in national parks that offer bunks, hot showers, and stoves. Although they do fill up quickly, refugios are a great budget option, especially if you like meeting people.
5. Look for meal deals
When you’re visiting Patagonia, there are economical ways to eat out with the whole family. For example, set lunch menus are very popular in Chile. Referred to as a menú ejecutivo, these three-course options often also include a drink. These deals exist in Argentine Patagonia, but you don’t see them quite so much.
Peak season family holidays in Patagonia – more affordable than you think!
Families don’t have to break the bank to have an incredible adventure. There are many different options when putting together your ideal Patagonian itinerary, with plenty of ways to save. From alternative accommodation to executive bus journeys, your family can enjoy the magic of Patagonia for less – even during the peak season.