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Our Last Minute Family Road Trip Planned On A Dime

Do you like last minute travel? You know the one that you didn't plan for when booking previous summer for the upcoming once a year vacation.
Do you like last minute travel? You know the one that you didn't plan for when booking previous summer for the upcoming once a year vacation. 
Well, that is what happened to our family about a month ago. But, wait I am going to share with you how we got our family of 6 prepared for a last minute road without breaking the bank or skipping on bills.

I am all in for hitting the road, but we all know a quick trip down the highway can become costly. I've been reading a new book that I will share with you guys in the later post. I am learning how to do small things that matter more instead of waiting to do the big over the top stuff that doesn't matter at the end of the day. My husband and I love doing things as a big ole' family.

I am all in for hitting the road, but we all know a quick trip down the highway can become costly. I've been reading a new book that I will share with you guys in the later post. I am learning how to do small things that matter more instead of waiting to do the big over the top stuff that doesn't matter at the end of the day. My husband and I love doing things as a big ole' family. 
As a woman, I know it can cost when trying to load up your tribe. 

Over the last year or so I've been researching how we can do fun stuff in out and around the city. So, of course, we had our summer plans on lockdown. That included one vacation and celebrating each person in the house birthday. In which I will share with you guys later.

The Last Minute 
We got a call from my sweet sister in law. She is putting together a 70th birthday party for their mom. So hey you know we had to jump on that. The reason I call it last minute is because I keep a monthly budget book and the hubs and I didn't plan a road trip to our hometown. But hey ok, let me see how I can work our monthly booking because we couldn't miss my mother in laws moms birthday. 

The Honesty
The party was going to be on a Saturday, and we knew Saturdays would require us both missing work. So, we couldn't make the actual party, but we did plan to go down on Sunday with a full day until late Monday. 
  • Tip: When planning something outside your budget: You must be honest with what you can and can not do? Making wrong money moves can and will set you back for months. That is the reality for most people. So, honesty with thine self is vital.
The Plan
Its 6 of us so I have to book a hotel so I can have some privacy and go out if we want too. On this trip, I get very savvy. Hotels can cost a ridiculous amount. For example, I booked our stay at the Eldorado Casino for Sunday it was only $89. The day before on a Saturday the same room was over 300 dollars.
It seems Sunday was a better day for our last minute travel and we saved over 200 or more dollars. 

Yes, I booked Sun-Monday in which I used hotels.com also, and this is not an ad I did use the site. The hotel was beautifully filled with restaurants, pools and of course slot machines. We do not gamble so it wasn't a bother for us. The price was perfect for the room. Besides the two smallest girls stayed with my mother in law and one went with other family members. So, I got to enjoy that large hotel room with bae most of our stay. It was worth every last minute penny spent. Do you think I saved money? 

How We Saved More Money On Our Last Minute Road Trip
  • Packing: That was the quickest part, we all packed what we wanted to take. The rule was to use one carry bag and put in the basics, underwear, two outfits, shoes, perfume, deodorant, toothpaste. We packed our stuff two weeks in advance and put our duffle bags in the closet until departure.

  • Last Minute Shopping: To save money I picked up travel size items.
  • Tip: Use dollar tree items when going on vacation. They are affordable and easy to maneuver for the kids. I buy large items for daily use, and I do not like to take them out on vacation. 
  • Eating Out: This may sound lame, but we cut back on eating out and weekend activities. The money I usually use for our family in town activities. We decided to put aside for leaving out of town. Yall it added quickly. I cooked every day, and we saw an increase in our money. Seriously, cutting back on ordering pizza or running in the chick fil a drive-thru saved us a ton over that month of preparing. 

I learned a lot about planning this trip and how quickly we saved extra money that we already had. Besides, I love doing fun stuff instead of eating up my money all the time. 

Side Note: There is nothing wrong with eating out. But if I can pack lunch and cook Mon-Fri imagine how much money I would save in one week.

If you are wondering, I cooked breakfast, the girls fixed lunch, and I cooked dinner when I got home. Everything came from the grocery store:

Breakfast:
Somedays- Oatmeal, Malt-O-Meal, Rice with butter, eggs, sausage and cheese, Pancakes with bananas, Grits eggs, bacon. We kept the breakfast on rotation.

Lunch: Sandwiches, chip, cakes, I baked a pound cake, Pot Pies, Frozen Pizza and sometimes leftovers. Lunch also stays on rotation. We did cook other things. These are the favorites. 

Dinner:
I believe in cooking two-day meals. When I cook I cook. Roast, Sweet Potatoes, Greens or Cabbage, Corn Bread, Desert, Corn Rotate with another time Spaghetti, Repeat top with two roasted, baked chickens. We always eat a big dinner.

You will not believe the amount of money we saved by cooking at home for that month. I had to share this because a lot of times I spend money without thinking. You know 20 dollars on midweek eating out could be used for a weekend date at the movies. Just an idea, this post is not about not doing something but doing more of something on better days. 

We set 200 dollars aside for gas on the road. We booked a minivan three weeks in advance and got a  good deal at budget rental 87 dollars for both days. We Win!
Also, we planned to spend money once we got to town. Since it was in my hometown Louisiana I knew the soul food spots I wanted to hit up. But I went online to see if there was anything else knew in the city. So I could factor that in my spending plan.
Confession: I got off track a little. I forgot my cute shoes because I left the house in sandals. So, I stopped at Ross and grab a pair of bootie heels. I must add they were on sale and they were stylish. :) oops

In Conclusion: The summer is halfway gone, and I know there are still plenty of people who have large families like I do. It can be hard goings and doings. But with a little planning and cutting back on the daily unnecessary things, it can be done. In all honesty, it took me a long time to get a schedule and money plan that is tailored to our lifestyle.

I get often asked how I do a lot with my family, and the truth is I am a lowkey budget gal. It's not easy to plan, but like I said earlier, I'd prefer to do fun things with my husband and kids once a week than eat out several times and have nothing to do on the weekend. That was the way I used to live, and I saw no fun nor happiness with my money.

As my life changes my thoughts and the way I do things change. I no longer dream of the things I can plan for. For the record life is hard, and no one wants to only work, and pay bills. I am not rich, but I plan my life and play like the rich by doing what I can do in my own lane.

Other than that our trip turned out to be lots of fun with family and friends. The best part was the tears and hugs from my mother and sister in laws. So, I will say this trip was worth every affordable penny.

Do you think I planned well? What would you have done differently?


Until Next Time See Ya In A Bit!
xoxo Tangie





8 comments

  1. You definitely planned well, I can say I really need take this into consideration

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  2. Those were some great tips that you introduced that was super interesting!!! I thoroughly enjoyed

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  3. These are some great tips! I don't think people realize that cutting out fast food for a month will really make that much of a difference but it does! Time to start saving for those last minute summer trips!

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  4. Those are some great and helpful tips for traveling especially those unplanned trips.

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