Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Weekend Getaway

Next weekend we are going out of town to the Twin Cities. It is a long overdue trip & we will celebrate April’s birthday by going to Nickelodeon Universe while we are there. A lot of times these kinds of trips stress me out because they always cost a lot of money. You have the hotel charges, the cost of gas, eating meals out, & of course any souvenirs or unexpected expenses.

The first thing we tried to do was get a good deal on a hotel. We checked out all different travel sites & even tried calling a couple hotels directly to see if they could do any better than the prices quoted online. We ended up booking 2 nights at a hotel in Bloomington. Since we are going to the Mall of America we wanted a hotel that was close by, figured it might save a little in gas & time than if we stayed actually in Minneapolis & had to find our way around. Our hotel cost us exactly $80 per night. This also includes continental breakfast (which we figure we’d pay at least $20 for breakfast if we went out), a pool, & exercise room. April is very excited about the trip & especially the pool at the hotel. Not me, I may have lost a few pounds but it’s no where near enough to justify me greasing myself just so I can squeeze into a strip of spandex.

Of course I have already scoped out & printed coupons that I have found online for Nickelodeon Universe & other shops that we know we want to hit. I also have received the travel brochure that has a sticker that you can wear to get discounts. I will make sure to bring a larger purse when we go to the mall so I can bring some snacks & a couple bottles of water – which will probably save us at least another $25.

Planning for snacks seems to be a big theme for trips. This is often where a good portion of $$ goes & you won’t even have anything to show for it! Since April has always been a ‘snacker’ I am very accustomed to always making sure I have snacks. (I even do this if we are just running errands for a couple hours.) I will make trip to the grocery store a couple days before we leave so I can pick up groceries so we have plenty of snack options. I also want to make sure we have bottled water & soda in our room so the vending machines don’t take money.

The gas alone will be about ½ of what we paid last year to go up to the Twin Cities. That price decline is a huge relief!
What are things that you do on vacations/trips to save some money?

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