If you’re thinking of what you can do with your little ‘uns that won’t break the bank, here are some ways to spend less on days out and activities.
Days out aren’t cheap so here I’ll share special offers where you can bring down the price of tickets, as well as any special free events and activities. I’ve also had a look at schemes such as Kids Pass and Little Bird and shared whether I think they’re any good.
Kids Pass and Little Bird memberships
What do Kids Pass and Little Bird do?
Both Kids Pass and Little Bird are essentially memberships which gives you discounts on the places and things kids like to do.
Kids Pass promises:
- Up to 57% off at “family days out” such as theme parks, bowling and play centres
- Up to 40% off at cinemas, seven days a week
- Kids eat free or for £1 at hundreds of restaurants
- Savings on places like Butlins and Haven
You only need one card per family, rather than per child.
Little Bird promises similar offers, as well as a shop to buy discounted tickets.
Are they any good?
The discounts generally look pretty decent, especially the restaurants and cinema deals. They’re pretty similar too, though Kids Pass seems to have more options – possibly because it’s been around longer.
Some of the restaurant chains involved are Giraffe, Garfunkels, Barburrito, Handmade Burger Co, and Bella Italia each offering free food for kids or £1 meals. There’s also BOGOG at Pizza Hut (delivery) and second pizza for £1 at Papa Johns. There are hundreds of independent ones too. You can see those involved without getting a membership.
The cinema discounts through Kids Pass are available at most of the major chains and various independent places. You get up to 40% off tickets for kids and adults, making it a good option even if you don’t have kids. A quick look at a few different chains and it generally works out as £8 per adult ticket.
Little Bird has fewer cinema chains, with only Vue and Odeon included. At the time of writing, you’ll pay:
- Odeon: £7.78 or £9.51 (inside the M25)
- Vue: £4.25 or £8.50
Do make sure though that it’s not cheaper to buy your tickets with a different deal. For example, my local Vue in York now charges £4.99 for all showings all the time, but when I last checked it would cost more than £8 via Kids Pass.
You’ll need to buy your tickets through the website or app – you can’t just show your pass at the box office.
The theme park and other family activities look good, though as with most entertainment it’s worth shopping around for other offers. It does look like it includes all the major theme parks and places like MadameTussaudss and London Dungeon.
You can also save up to 50% at places like Eurocamp, Haven and Butlins.
Kids Pass offers
At full-price – £40 a year – it’s possibly a bit pricey. However, there are ways to save which make it worth a go.
Kids Pass: One year for £28
Living Social is selling an annual pass for £27, plus a £1 admin fee. This saves you £11.99 on the standard annual price.
Kids Pass: 30-day trial for £1
For £1 I’m confident you’ll save some money with the card. Sadly my exclusive 90-day offer has ended and all trials have been cut to 14 days.
After the 14-days it will auto-renew for £4.99 a month. Make sure you remember to cancel if you don’t want to keep it.
Little Bird offers
Little Bird: 30-day trial for £1
There’s also a 30-day trial for £1 offer. After this, it renews at £34.99.
Days Out offers
Another scheme is the Days Out website. This works slightly differently. You pay £5 to download five vouchers a year, or £15 for unlimited offers. Worth a look for different attractions.
Other day out deals
English Heritage: 50% off
Sign up to the M&S Sparks loyalty scheme and you will see an offer giving you half-price tickets until 30 September 2021. You must prebook tickets using a code from M&S and present your Sparks card at the ticket office on arrival. More on the M&S Sparks scheme here.
Theme park deals
Check out my separate guide to paying less for theme park tickets such as Alton Towers and Legoland.