How to make the most out of your long weekend without breaking the bank

#Family and finance

Budget friendly ways to spend your extra day off

Two days off work a week doesn’t always seem like enough. So, when a long weekend comes around, most people get excited and mark their calendars. While it’s the perfect opportunity to take advantage of what the season offers, sometimes trips and activities we plan end up costing a lot more than we’ve budgeted for. Here are five fun, budget friendly alternatives that won’t burn a hole in your wallet: 

Save on accommodation

The easiest way to save on hotels, gas and food is to stay in the comfort of your own home. It may not sound as exciting as a weekend getaway to a luxurious spa, but staycations are gaining popularity because of the higher cost of travel and balancing busy schedules.

Another option is to stay with family or friends. Long weekends are a perfect opportunity to get out of your usual routine and having a long overdue visit with grandma or a friend.

One thing to remember when planning a staycation, whether it’s in your home or a friend’s, is to treat it like a regular vacation. Just like a trip, set a budget, make an itinerary and most importantly, leave the stressors in your life. Be a tourist and explore your own community. If you want to do nothing – do nothing. Just don’t get caught up with house work or chores.

Plan a day trip

You’d be surprised what you can find not far from your own backyard. Your local tourism website can help you find what you may have been missing.

Grab the sunscreen, pack some sandwiches and head to the beach or lace up your running shoes and go for a hike. Day trips don’t have to be expensive.  Some parks and conservation areas offer free admission on long weekends, or a group price for a group of people.


Whether you’re feeling adventurous or just want some R&R, you don’t need to spend a lot to have a good time with your friends and family.
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Get involved

Throughout the year, there are free events and festivals happening at parks around the city. Find a local events calendar online and check out the local vendors and artists or maybe even fireworks.

Whether you’re feeling adventurous or just want some R&R, you don’t need to spend a lot to have a good time with your friends and family.

Give back

A fun, fulfilling and free way to make sure you’ve made the most of your long weekend is by volunteering. There’s a variety of programs available that range from participating in a park clean up to playing outside with children. It’s always a good time to give back. To find the right volunteer opportunity for you, check out and see how you can help your community.

Try something new

Long weekends are the perfect opportunity to try something new, like geocaching. Considered the world’s largest treasure hunt, geocaching is becoming a popular way to get outside and explore your community. Ranging in difficulty, it’s a great way to discover new places in your community alone or with family and friends. Sign up, explore and log your adventures at

The information provided is based on current laws, regulations and other rules applicable to Canadian residents. It is accurate to the best of our knowledge as of the date of publication. Rules and their interpretation may change, affecting the accuracy of the information. The information provided is general in nature, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for advice in any specific situation. For specific situations, advice should be obtained from the appropriate legal, accounting, tax or other professional advisors.


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