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How to plan a budget-friendly family trip to Goa this Father's Day

How to plan a budget-friendly family trip to Goa this Father's Day

By Aquib Nawab

05 Jun, 2024

Father’s Day is around the corner; and what can be better than having an unforgettable family trip to Goa?

Goa has some of the amazing beaches, a buzzing culture and generally laid back attitude that makes it just right for family holidays. And guess what? You don’t have to spend much!

Here’s your ultimate guide to planning a budget-friendly family trip to Goa this Father’s Day.

1. Plan ahead and book early

Planning is key to making your trip both enjoyable and affordable. Start by booking your flights or train tickets well in advance. Early bookings can save you lots of money as far as travel costs are concerned. Look out for discounts and deals on travel websites; moreover, travelling mid-week will cost you less on air tickets in most cases.

As regards accommodation, consider guest houses, hostels or homestays like Airbnb, Booking.com and The Hosteller that will be within your budget.

If you want an all immersive experience, choose a comfortable homestay where you can interact with locals who teach you more about Goan culture.

Secure your budget-friendly Goa getaway with early booking (Credits: Canva)

2. Choose the right location

Goa is divided into North and South Goa with distinct characteristics each. North Goa offers lively beaches, vibrant markets and nightlife while South Goa provides a serene environment with its calm beaches along with small towns.

For budget friendly trips consider staying in Anjuna, Calangute, Candolim or Baga (North Goa). These areas have good transport systems networked all over them where one can find many cheap accommodations places as well as places where they can dine from also available here too. In terms of tranquillity retreats with less commercialised shorelines such as Agonda beach in Palolem beach are ideal destinations for families’ based vacation.

North or South? Choosing the ideal Goa escape (Credits: Canva)

3. Pack smart and light

Smart packing helps avoid unnecessary costs. Make a list of what you need and stick to it. Pack lightweight, comfortable clothes appropriate for the hot weather as well as some sunscreens, caps and sunglasses that protect you from the sun.

Remember to pack reusable water bottles so that you do not have to keep buying water in plastic bottles all the time. You might also want to have a first aid kit with essential medicines as well. In case of children bring some snacks and entertainment for your journey to keep them from getting bored.

Smart packing = Savings! Keep it light for your Goa getaway (Credits: Canva)

4. Explore local cuisine

One of the greatest things about Goa is its cuisine. It ranges from seafood and Goan traditional dishes among others. In order not to go overboard on your trip budget-wise, consider eating at local eateries or beach shacks rather than expensive restaurants.

Try fish curry, prawn balchão, bebinca (a traditional Goan dessert) and other Goan specialities during your stay in Goa. Visit local markets where you can buy fresh fruits and snacks too. This way, not only will you save money but also get a taste of real authentic Goan flavours. Some cafes to try traditional Goan food are Café Sussegado Souza in Assagao, Vinayak Family Restaurant in Calangute, and Curlies Beach Shack in Anjuna.

Local flavors at budget friendly fares (Credits: Canva)

5. Enjoy free and low-cost activities

There are indeed many things you can engage in without turning out broke while at Goa.

Spend your days lazing on the shorelines; building sand castles with kids or even taking cool baths in the sea waters around it Beaches such as Anjuna, Vagator, Palolem etc. are perfect for an idyllic family day out together with beaches such as Anjuna beach, Vagator beach,Palolem Beach which offer a great deal of relaxation for families

Discover the rich history and culture of Goa by visiting its iconic churches and temples. The Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se Cathedral, and Shanta Durga Temple are must-visit landmarks that have free entry. Stroll through the colourful streets of Fontainhas, the Latin Quarter of Panjim and see the Portuguese architecture.

Affordable adventrues in Goa (Credits: Canva)

6. Opt for public transport

Public transport can be a fun and cost-effective way to move around Goa. This means if you want to travel between beaches and towns without spending much money you should think about renting a scooter or a bicycle: it will not only save your budget but also make your trip more exciting.

If you are travelling with kids or prefer more comfort, then you may want to hire a taxi for the day. Ensure that you agree on fare before getting in or use an app-based taxi service like Goa Miles which has fair pricing.

Budget-friendly commuting in Goa (Credits: The Hosteller)

7. Experience flea markets

A trip to Goa would not be complete without exploring its vibrant markets where everything from souvenirs to clothing and accessories can be bought at cheap prices.

Go to Anjuna Flea Market held every Wednesday for an unusual shopping experience or you could choose Mapusa Market where fresh produce, spices, local delicacies etc can be found. Do not forget to visit the vibrant Arpora Saturday Night Market that offers a delightful array of handicrafts, jewellery, clothing, and live music, creating a lively atmosphere for visitors.

Another must-visit market is the Calangute Market Square, which offers a mix of local products, beachwear, and handicrafts, making it perfect for souvenir shopping.

When dealing with sellers, always remember that haggling is part of Indian market culture in order to secure best price deals. Besides saving money while shopping locally also supports local artisans besides small enterprises.

Discover local gems at vibrant flea markets (Credits: Canva)

8. Embrace the Goan spirit

Goa is not just a destination; it’s a way of life. Therefore take it easy as is typical with Goans while enjoying every moment that comes along the way as though there is no tomorrow. Spend quality time with your family on the beach playing games or just sitting silently watching the sunset together.

Whenever there is a chance to attend any cultural activity in Goa, don't miss it. Remember that Goans are known for being hospitable and for loving festivities. By joining in these events and activities, you can make your trip unforgettable and enjoyable.

Embrace the lively Goan spirit (Credits: Canva)

9. Plan a picnic

A picnic is a great way to enjoy Goa’s natural beauty without spending much money. Carry along sandwiches, fruits, snacks in a picnic basket and head on to any of Goa’s picturesque locations like Colva and Miramar beaches or the Bhagwan Mahavir Garden in Panjim which has a lot of open space perfect for family picnics.

Eating with loved ones in nature is one of life’s simplest pleasures that everyone will remember.

Making the most of Goa's beauty (Credits: Canva)

10. Capture the memories

Lastly, ensure you capture every beautiful moment of your trip. Take as many photos and videos as possible so that you have memories forever. Let your kids keep travel journals or scrapbooks where they can write down the most interesting things about their trip.

Inexpensive trips do not mean loss of fun and memories though because with little organising and creativity an unforgettable Father’s Day weekend vacation in Goa would be possible within a certain budget.

Snapshots of joy (Credits: Canva)

What to do now?

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