Every year, families across the country look for ways to spend their Spring Break without having to break the bank. With advanced planning and doing your homework, it is easy to have a relaxing family vacation without endangering the life of your piggy bank.
1. Explore your own town.
There may be many things you have yet to experience in your own town. Look to undiscovered museums, art galleries and ongoing exhibits. Check with your local convention or tourism board for some of the lesser-known attractions in your area.
2. Discover your next-door neighbor.
As a resident of Memphis, Tennessee, I love taking a quick two and a half hour drive to Nashville. From visiting historic homes and farms to walking the streets of the Capitol Buildings, there is always a nook or cranny that I haven’t experienced before.
3. Sleep under the stars.
One of the things city kids especially don’t normally experience is that of an old-fashioned camping trip. State and National Parks offer campsites at very reasonable prices and proceeds go right back into the park. (Fun and a good deed all in one!) Head to your local camping store and purchase a tent and some sleeping bags (all for less than the cost of one night at a moderate hotel).
4. Go on an in-state thrill ride.
Rather than pack the kids up and head to Disney World or Six Flags, search the internet for an instate theme park. In Tennessee, I recommend Dollyworld and its sister water park. Much more reasonably priced, you’ll also find fewer crowds.
5. Travel the open road.
Hop on the nearest highway and drive. You’ll find diners, quirky attractions, roadside gift shops and endless memories. One of my favorite things to do is find the state line and take pictures of myself literally being in two places and once. Another idea is to take a map, close your eyes and point. You’re sure to find something unexpected and wonderful.
6. Know before you go.
Do your homework. Look for coupons and discounts available either online or at the local Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
7. Pack a picnic.
No matter your destination, it is easy to make a few sandwiches and pack a cooler. Find a scenic overlook or park to eat and have yourself a ball. Purchasing items to make your own lunch quickly saves up to $30 for a family of four.
8. Google, google, google.
Search for Free Attractions in (insert town name here). You’ll find deals such as free admission to attractions on certain days and times and various parks and monuments that have no admission fee.
9. Change the way you spend your change.
While it may be tempting to spend those quarters adding up in your pocket throughout the day, consider setting them aside in a jar at home. Not only will the change add up, you’ll find your vacation fund growing each day.