budget-friendly summer activities


Friends canoeing together on the river.

We’ve all been in a position where we need to make saving money our main priority. However, just because you can’t afford a lavish summer vacation this year doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the fun! Continue reading for some ideas and tips on budget-friendly activities you can enjoy this season:


Two green chairs setup at a campsite.

Camping is the perfect activity to have a fantastic time without breaking the bank! All you need is a tent, a couple of folding chairs, and a beautiful location.

Of course, this isn’t all you’ll need. Still, the simplicity of camping is what makes it both a cost-effective and special summer activity! During the day, you can go for a swim or a hike, while at night, everyone can enjoy roasting marshmallows and exchanging stories around the fire. Camping is also great for outdoor games such as cornhole or disk golf! 

Whether you plan on packing up your RV or sleeping in a slumber bag under the stars, renting a campsite is affordable. They also typically include a grill, fire pit, and quick access to the beach – what else do you need in the summer?!

2.beach day

A wooden pier leading down to a sandy beach and blue water.

Is anything more relaxing than being at the beach on a warm, sunny day? Whether you prefer to lay out and read or spend your day splashing in the water. And much like camping, you can save a lot of money by planning your trip ahead of time.

Avoid multiple trips to the store by packing your coolers full of snacks and drinks throughout the day. Items like water bottles, sandwiches, crackers, and veggies are good options. Buy them in bulk beforehand to help you save even more money!

Regarding cheap and fun beach activities, you can bring a volleyball for the free courts or a kite for running along the shore. Building sand castles is always a great time for kids, and make sure you have plenty of floats for playing in the water. The best part about the beach is that there's something enjoyable for everyone - and it’s so easy not to overspend while you're there!

pro tip – A beach day allows you to get out of the city and relax! Avoid the panic of an unexpected event, such as accidentally leaving your debit or credit card at home or forgetting to pay a bill, by using Digital Banking services. You can take care of last-minute financial transactions from your phone without having to end your day early.

3.bed and breakfast

A white bed with a tray of breakfast and coffee sitting on it.

If you want to get away for a couple of days, your most significant expenses will likely be the travel and hotel costs. Staying at a local bed and breakfast can save you money on both!

B&Bs offer lower rates than traditional hotels, and the aesthetic will have much more character! As the name suggests, guests are typically provided with a delicious breakfast every morning and yummy snacks in the lobby. Many locations also offer free canoeing or biking rentals so you can easily explore the area.

B&Bs provide guests with the comfort of being at home and the relaxation of being on vacation. If you're interested in booking a trip to one of Michigan’s most charming and unique spots, check out Michigan.org/bed-breakfasts.

pro tip – Try taking your overnight trip during the week instead of the weekend. Rates tend to be less expensive during the week, and your travel activities will be less crowded with fewer guests. It’s a win-win!

4.local festivals

A girl standing at a festival with her arm in the air.

Summer is the perfect time for cities to throw their local festivals! These events allow you to get together with your community and enjoy all the food trucks, entertainment, and shopping your area offers! You can also expect live music, games, and fireworks at night. There really is something fun for everyone, and the best part is how cost-friendly they're to attend. Some festivals offer free admission - but even if you must pay, it likely won’t be a high price!

pro tip - There are A LOT of unique festivals thrown every summer! Find one that interests you by using the website https://festivalguidesandreviews.com/. Just type in your location and this convenient site will provide the dates, pricing, and website link to every upcoming festival in your area.

5.exploring your city

Two friends riding a bike and exploring the city.

Exploring your city has become an incredibly popular activity in recent years! This is also known as a “staycation,” and the idea is that you try something new in your area.

This could be dining at a new restaurant or checking out a local shop you’ve never been to. If you're more of a nature lover, you could go on a bike ride through a park you don’t usually visit or try a new hiking trail. If you can’t find anything in your city, take a trip one town over and do something there. This a great way to take a break from your daily routine without the stress of planning and breaking your budget!

pro tip - Michigan is one of the most beautiful places in the world! Whether you're a local or live out of state, you must check out our blog, Top Five Places to Visit in Michigan This Summer, before planning your next trip! You’ll learn about some of the most travel-worthy destinations in Michigan and gain helpful booking information. Click the link to start reading now:

Read Blog 

what’s next?

From the open road to the open water! If you're interested in purchasing a new vehicle, RV, or boat to enjoy this summer, BlueOx Credit Union has you covered! We offer competitive rates, low monthly payments, and flexible terms on all our loans. Members can also take advantage of convenient services such as Skip-a-Payment, LoanPay Xpress, and so much more! Click the following links to apply online today:

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