I love traveling with my family and attend blogging events!!! In the last year I have attended BlogHer in San Diego, Disney Cruise, Disney World, Bloggy Boot Camp in St. Louis, Marvel’s the Avengers Red Carpet in New York, and SheCon in Disney World. I know when it is time to save and when it is time to have fun!!! I bargain shop so that I can afford the things I want! Here are some tips when traveling on a budget that I posted below.
With gasoline and airline tickets through the roof right now, it’s no wonder many are giving up their summer vacations in exchange for doing something closer to home. Using these tips, you won’t have to sacrifice your summer vacation – or empty your wallet.
Choose your destination.
Choose your destination based on your interests, desires, and budget. If you live in the Midwest, you could travel to Chicago, or St. Louis. If you’re on the East Coast, you could choose Florida or Washington, D.C. The West Coast has lots of options – Colorado, Las Vegas, or lots of places in California!
Create a list of your top 10 ideas for your vacation, and write down the estimated cost for each (include travel, lodging, and expenses like theme park tickets if you are going to Disney or Six Flags). When you narrow it down to 3 or 4 ideas, you can make your decision based on the final ticket price if you are trying to keep your expenses as low as possible.
Plane, train, or car?
Check out the prices for plane and train tickets, and then compare them to the cost of gasoline for your own vehicle. If you drive a gas-guzzling SUV, consider renting a car to save money on gas. Driving will obviously make your trip more scenic, but sometimes a train trip is cheaper. If you’re going on vacation alone, a plane ticket might not be out of the question – or maybe you have some miles saved up.
Either way, figure out what will be the most cost-effective and go from there. Try hotwire.com and priceline.com for booking travel arrangements at a discount.
Food and Drinks
Pack your own food and drinks for your trip, if at all possible. You can create your own “lunchables” in zip-loc bags. To pack lunches for an entire 3-day trip, you could spend less than $50. To eat out 3 times a day (not including snacks at gas stations, etc), for 3 days… well, that’s 9 meals. Say you ate at cheaper fast food chains, that is still over $50 per day. It may seem a bit inconvenient to have to plan all of it out and pack that much food, but in reality it will also keep you from having to stop so often unless you want to stop to eat.
Find a coupon book for the area you are traveling to, and you can save 50% or more on movie passes, attraction tickets, hotels, and more.
On the road!
Now you’re ready to hit the road, with all of the tools needed to keep your vacation within budget. Enjoy your trip, and remember: vacations are about creating memories, so don’t sweat the small stuff!
Traveling With a Toddler!
Read a few tips I wrote when Traveling with a Toddler!