Later today Louis and I sail for Johnny Onionville, incidentally one of our favourite places in Brittany, for the start of our fortnight long rip roaring holiday that I hope would make the Famous Five envious. Lots of picnics, adventures and, of course, lashings of ginger beer from the underseat storage. Leftovers from our festival revels. Even though money is way tighter than it used to be when I was married, travelling is the thing that I am most reluctant to forego. In order to continue to experiencing different cultures I've got to keep the costs down. Here's what I've planned to achieve that.
- Although I'm travelling at a weekend in high season some crossings on my beloved Brittany Ferries are cheaper than others. I've saved a packet by not sailing at peak, peak rate prices and have chosen day crossings where I don't need a cabin. An essential these days on night sailings I'm afraid as I've turned into a right Walter Softy. Those days of recliner seats or sleeping under tables in public areas, whilst as frugal as frugal can be, are long gone.
- There's been no new holiday wardrobe . I'll make do with what I've got already. After all I'm going to be meeting a whole load of strangers who've never seen me in my old clothes before!
- We're going to places where we make our own low cost entertainment. Beaches, parks and attractions will all feature. For the first week I'll be using those ubiquitous inexpensive or free aires for parking up the van, heading for old favourites and hopefully discovering some new ones on the way.
- I'll be on a mission to cut mobile and data charges and will let you know how I get on with negotiating this overseas minefield.
- I've used Flexicover travel annual insurance policies for years and shaved pounds off the prices charged by some of the better known companies.
- I'm keeping my driving to a minimun and staying in Brittany to reduce diesel costs.
And you won't be surprised to hear that eating and drinking will play a big part in my holiday experience but to save the pennies I'll be:
- Emptying the fridge at home before I go and taking what's left with me. It'll cut the cost of our first shop and there'll be no nasty furry surprises waiting at home for me when I return.
- Looking at my recipes books before I leave and choosing some tasty things to cook. I'll tailor the store cupboard ingredients that I take accordingly.
- Swapping eating out with trying food from local shops and markets for much of the time. I'm planning a seafood feast, rabbit and cassoulet to give Louis a taste of things that he's never tried before.
- Buying packs of ice cream and putting them in the freezer rather than forking out regularly on expensive cones in glaceries.
- Hanging on to the principle of using up leftovers. After waste not, want not refers to times when I'm abroad as well as at home!