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Posted by John King
The school summer holidays are just around the corner, but many parents are concerned they will not be able to afford to entertain their offspring as the cost of living continues to escalate.
A survey by Family Action found 54 per cent of families will be cutting back on day trips this year because they have become more expensive, with those on low incomes and the 'squeezed middle' particularly affected.
It also discovered that the average trip out costs families £80 - up from £50 a year ago - meaning budgeting is now essential for most.
Many parents who have previously relied on community or school summer schemes are concerned they will not be able to do so in 2012 because of government cutbacks.
Family Action chief executive Helen Dent criticised the owners of attractions and holiday companies for raising their prices during the summer.
"Children get a boost from days out - including to their educational development. However, this year many parents are so worried that summer day trips will break the bank that they're cutting back," she added.
It follows a new report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, which found that a couple with two children now needs to earn £36,800 to get by.
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