May 17, 2010

Smart Vacations on a Budget

For the past four years, my husband and I have taken vacations around the country and are usually pretty frugal about our trips. I wanted to share a few vacation planning tips to help you stay on a budget, own what you eat and still enjoy your vacation.

Find some place inexpensive that has a kitchen or kitchenette. My husband often uses (vacation rental by owners) to find great condos or cabins near our destinations. We can find inexpensive places to stay that give us more space for the money.

On our recent trip, we used and found a Candlewood Suites for around $70 per night, which included a large room, kitchenette and separate bedroom. This was perfect for us. It gave us more room to move around with the little one.

Why is the kitchen or kitchenette key? See next point…

I stay true to my vacation from the kitchen while we are on vacation, but having a kitchen or even a kitchenette saves us a ton of money and time without me spending a lot of time in the kitchen.

Whenever we get to our destination, we stop at a local grocery store and buy food for breakfasts and lunches. We also pick up some snacks and drinks. This saves us time and allows us to see more. We usually eat a quick breakfast and can eat lunch at a park or on the road to our next destination.

Healthy snacks, fruit and water help us avoid the quick fixes from vending machines or fast food places. Like I said before, it also saves us a ton of money without extra time in the kitchen.

Aside from the money saving and healthy aspects of this approach, it also has another huge benefit for our family. Marriage saving! My husband and I are both pretty indecisive when it comes to places to eat so not having to choose breakfast or lunch places every day saves a lot of arguments and headaches, which ultimately saves our marriage! J

In honor of my vacation from the kitchen, we usually eat out each night. We like to try the local cuisine and try to test out a new local restaurant each night. We try to find something new, something relatively healthy and something tasty all at the same time! We really enjoy this part of our vacation and write reviews in our personal vacation journal about each place we visit. Some day I’ll have to post my vacation restaurant reviews for you all to see!

So with smart staying and smart eating, I hope you all have a smart and enjoyable vacation this year!

OWN WHAT YOU EAT, even on vacation.

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