Unplugged family weekends: plan activities away from screens – and slash your energy bills in the process!

As with so many things in life, cutting your carbon emissions and saving money on your energy bills is a task which starts at home. It should be no surprise that many of our most wasteful energy consumption habits are ones which take place in the family home, as it is there where we tend to use the greatest number of appliances and power points throughout our daily routine. From over-filled kettles and bathtubs to phone chargers and screens left on standby, there are lots of ways we can work together to collectively reduce our wasted energy.

But what about the more adventurous amongst us? Are there no ways that we can contribute to this good cause, whilst also expending a little of our own energy along the way, too? As anybody with a family will know, a household full of children with none of their favourite gadgets and games to use can be a problem in itself. A good way to save energy and money whilst cutting emissions and getting your young ones to expend some of their own excess energy is to plan a weekend of unplugged entertainment. That’s right: power-down your laptop, leave the car in the garage, and think of new ways to go about your days off whilst combating the expense of rising energy costs.

So, how should you go about planning an exciting family weekend off-grid?

The first problem you can encounter with your lo-fi weekend will undoubtedly be resistance from the children (and, potentially, spouses too) who have grown attached to their energy-guzzling home comforts. The best way to avoid any awkward scenes before you have even left the house, is to choose activities which will appeal to everyone. If you have older children and teenagers, then there is no better way to get them out of the house for an entire weekend than by taking them to a festival. The fun of camping, mixed with the lively atmosphere will ensure that smart phones and hair driers are the last things on their mind. With the festival market opening up in recent years to become such a major player in the leisure industry, it has never been easier to find a suitable, family-orientated festival, no matter your budget or interests.

Of course, sometimes the most exciting times can be had just outside your front door – especially if you have very young children. A trip out to nearby woods for a nature trail walk may not go down too well with older children – who could view it a bit like the extra homework of an impromptu field trip – but toddlers and young children love to marvel at nature. And, in the colder months you have the added beauty of the changing seasons and all kinds of strange mushrooms and fungi to hunt for. Just make sure you aren’t tempted to eat any of them!

Powering down your household doesn’t even have to be countered with exhausting trips out or adventures into the wilderness. Whilst your intentions might be to save money and achieve cheap energy bills, you can turn your offline abode into a tranquil personal space by just turning off and staying in. Light a few candles, keep your meal times simple, and find your own ways to amuse yourself – from romantic evenings with your partner, to finally finishing that book you have been meaning to get around to for weeks. If you have both children and musical instruments, then why not take that duster Stratocaster down from its wall mounted display case and jam out a few tunes – kids love to make noise!

Whatever your interests and budget, there is always a way to save on your energy bills. The simplest method is always to lower your own consumption habits. The weekend is the perfect time to implement changes, as you are less likely to be tied to a work-day routine. So, now that you have made it to the end of the article, why not get started right now..and switch off!

In association with Ovo.