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Money saving ways to keep the kids entertained this October half term

Published 24 October 2014 by

The half term break is a daunting prospect for many parents; with the thought of entertaining the kids for a week filling some with dread. As well as worrying about making sure they stay busy, you may also be concerned about how much this is going to cost.

We’re here to help though. To help you keep your little ones entertained this October half term, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best offers and activities that won’t leave you strapped for cash once the kids go back to school. All prices and offers correct at time of writing – 23/10/2014.

Days Out

Cinema - Take the kids out to the cinema for less this half term, by choosing from any of the following money saving offers:

1. Cineworld are offering a price per showing of £1.35 for both adults and children when booked online (or £1.50 on the day) as part of the Movies for Juniors screenings. These take place at the weekend and during the school holidays.

2. Vue, as part of its Kids AM offer, is similarly providing a price of £1.75 for both adults and children (aged 2-12) for screenings of children’s films at the weekends and during the school holidays.

Tesco Clubcard Days Out - If you shop at Tesco and collect points on your Clubcard, this half term you could convert your vouchers to Clubcard Boost and receive three or four times’ the value on your points. For example, £12.50 in Clubcard vouchers could get you a one-day ticket to Alton Towers worth £49. With this offer at the moment, you can get up to 75% off days out at Madame Tussauds, Legoland and hundreds more attractions.

2for1 National Rail Ticket - National Rail are offering a 2for1 promotion on days out in London. To receive the offer you have to buy a national rail ticket and register with Days Out Guide. To be eligible for the offer you need to print off the voucher from Days Out Guide and have a valid rail ticket. You’ll also need to choose the closest station to the attraction as a final destination and your rail ticket has to be bought from National Rail on the same day as you want to visit an attraction. With this offer you can get 2for1 entry into ZSL London Zoo, Sea Life London Aquarium and Chessington World of Adventures.

The National Trust - If you want to unplug your kids this half term, a trip to one of the many National Trust properties or parks could be a good option. With Halloween falling on the Friday of half-term for many schools this year, the National Trust have many events and activities running throughout the break. These include a wizardry school, Halloween crafts and pumpkin parties. Many of the events range in price from £2 to £17.50 per person with this excluding admission costs. To see a full list of the Halloween events organised by the National Trust, head to their website.

There are also plenty of free museums you can visit and expand your kids’ minds at during the school break.

Eating Out

Eating out with the kids can at times be stressful and expensive, but with the following offers it doesn’t have to be this half-term:

Slug and Lettuce - Kids can get a main with a drink and ice-cream for £1 when they dine with an adult on a Sunday at any Slug and Lettuce venue. The child has to order from the under-8s menu and the adult from the main menu. There is no voucher needed and the offer is ongoing.

Beefeater Grill - A child aged 12 or under can eat for free when an adult buys a meal from the main menu. This offer is only valid on Saturdays between 12pm and 5pm and for every adult ordering a main meal, a maximum of six children per table can eat for free. Kids will get a meal from the children’s menu as well as a drink. There is no voucher needed and the offer is ongoing.

Crown Carveries - Every Sunday you can buy an adult carvery at Crown Carveries and get a kid’s carvery for free. The children’s carvery meal is suitable for a child under 10. There is no voucher needed and the offer is ongoing.

Sports Activities

Free football coaching - FA Tesco Skills is offering both girls and boys aged 5 to 11 the opportunity to take part in free football coaching sessions. The programme runs throughout the school holidays and aims to improve dribbling, passing and shooting skills. Places on the programme are subject to availability and must be booked in advance, with a parent or guardian having to sign up their child. For more information visit the Tesco Skills website.

Free tennis coaching - Tennis For Free provides free coaching sessions for children aged 3 and over. The sessions run mostly during the weekends, with equipment being provided for free. The tennis sessions are more about having fun than professional coaching. To see whether there are any sessions available in your local area visit the Tennis For Free website.

Adventure Holiday - Teenagers can be a challenge to keep occupied during half term but the National Citizen Service is providing a unique opportunity that could excite even the grumpiest of teens. The organisation is inviting teens on a week-long course, which includes 30 hours of community work. To register your child, enter their details into the National Citizen Service application.