Smart Spender: Easter ideas, budget travel and fashion
Caitríona Redmond rounds up the latest top deals and special offers to help you keep your spending under control
Easter Bunny experience
If you're looking for an activity this March, the Butlers Chocolate Experience is a tour of the Butlers Chocolate factory in Dublin 17, which culminates in an opportunity to decorate your own Easter Egg and meeting the Easter Bunny. The Butlers Chocolate Visitors Centre is just off the M50, in Clonshaugh and there are plenty of parking spaces but you must book your tours online (€13.50) in advance. Save 5pc when booking online at www.butlerschocolates.com/book The tour can be booked all year around but takes on an Easter theme at this time of the year.
Also worth noting, from now until Easter week, you can order a personalised Butlers Milk Chocolate Easter Egg for €15.95 in store at any Butlers Chocolate Café and then collect from the Easter Bunny at the Butlers Chocolate Experience from March 18th-24. This is a great price for a quality chocolate egg with a personal message.
If a trip to Dublin to decorate a chocolate egg is a bit too far, Dealz has a great range of Easter-themed crafts on a budget including the 'Make Your Own Easter Bonnet' kit and 'Egg Character Craft Kit' so you can decorate your own boiled eggs. Focusing more on crafts that children will be able to display over the Easter holidays, you can also get clay egg and Easter Bunny painting kits. As with most products from Dealz, each kit costs just €1.49 and is available in stores nationwide while stocks last. For more information visit www.dealz.ie
The new Family Leap Card is an initiative to encourage families to leave the cars at home and use public transport during the 1916 commemorations. The card covers the cost of a family of two adults and four children (up to age 18, as far as their 19th birthday) in the greater Dublin area on public transport, for a 24-hour-period from the minute it is first activated.
The Leap Family Card can be used on all Dublin Bus scheduled services, Xpresso, Airlink, and Nitelink. It can also be used on Bus Éireann services within the red zone around Dublin, all Dart services and Commuter Rail Services in the Short Hop Zone, and all Luas services. The price is an incredibly low €10 per ticket, which is limited to two tickets per order, and is only available while stocks last. Take my advice and order your pair of tickets today. The tickets can be used right up until 31st December 2016, meaning you could buy them now and keep them on standby for the summer. For more information visit www.leapcard.ie and follow the instructions to order online.
Get your fashion fix
Get your fashion fix for less in Lidl today as the first instalment of their Spring/Summer clothing range goes on sale. Our top pick today is the men's denim jacket with cotton sleeves and drawstring hood for only €14.99 (pictured). Also worth checking out is the ladies denim shirt for €9.99. We recommend you get to the stores early to check out the sizes and designs you want. For more information see Lidl stores nationwide or visit www.lidl.ie