Have Fun, Save Money with a Staycation!

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by on August 8, 2010

Thanks to Jackie at It’s Crazy Cheap! for this guest post!

Were finances tight this summer? Did your family not get to take the normal week-long vacation to the coast this summer? Now is a great time for a “staycation”. Staycation is a popular term meaning to “stay” in the area you live in for vacation. It used to mean only sleeping at home, but more recently it’s become synonymous with staying at a hotel within an hour or two drive of your home. Staycations are great because you still get a vacation from work, cooking, cleaning, and there are NO Travel Expenses! No flying, no long car rides and you can bring many of the items that you need with you.

Most hotels are offering great discounts now that school is back in session. Just this week I got an email from my favorite hotel offering incredible deals August 8th – September 12th. The Arizona Grande Resort in Phoenix, Arizona is offering two room suites for $99 plus taxes and nightly resort fee instead of their normal rate of $179-$219 a night. This hotel has a golf course, on site restaurants, a seven acre water park, refrigerator in room, balcony or patio off each room, and a separate living room and bedroom. My family and I typically stay at this resort at least twice a year, but only when I get great deals like this one!

If you booked at The Arizona Grande Resort for the weekend of Friday, August 13th – Sunday, August 15th you’d pay $432.92 without the discount! However, with the discount you’d save $140.68 and pay ONLY $292.24. That’s enough savings to get a 3rd night FREE! To find more deals at this hotel, go HERE!

If you don’t live in Phoenix and there’s a resort near you that you’ve always dreamed of going to but is not within your financial reach sign up for their promotions at the hotel’s website. I get deals like this to hotels all over Tucson and Phoenix. Some affordable, some not, but it never hurts to try!

After you book that great hotel you’re not done!
There are lots of ways still left to save!  Check out Restaurant.com, My Travel Guide and your coupon stash to figure out where you can save on food costs.

  • Restaurant.com specializes in restaurant gift certificates purchased in advance for a discounted price. You can find out about current discounts on Restaurants.com HERE. Make sure and read the fine print cause there are a few exclusions with these gift certificates. (For example: Minimum purchase of $35. 18% Gratuity added prior to discount. Valid for Dinner, Food ONLY. Excludes: Other Offers/Promotions. Not Valid on Happy Hour Menu.)
  • My Travel Guide is another great website for finding out what restaurants are near the hotel you’ll be staying at. This websites lists all restaurants near an address from fast food to fine dining and allows user ratings so you will know if a restaurant is good before you even go there!

Obviously the easiest way to save is to bring your own food, load up the in room fridge and eat out as little as possible. While on vacation my family always goes out for a large breakfast before whatever event we have planned for the day. We usually go to IHOP or Cracker Barrel which we pay for with gift cards I earn taking survey’s online. You can read more making FREE money online taking survey’s HERE. We take snacks with us on our morning/afternoon excursions and then have our biggest meal of the day at lunchtime. Prices are usually cheaper during this part of the day and the portions are large enough to feed the family, but not so much that you’re taking leftovers back to the room with no way to heat them up! For dinner we come back to the hotel room and for eat a picnic dinner on the balcony of our room. It’s nice having some down time to relax and spending $10 at the grocery store for lunch instead of $50 at a restaurant helps the budget a lot!

Remember your camera, sunscreen, water toys, bathing suits, and beach bags so you don’t get caught off guard by any unnecessary expenses! Then you’re ready to enjoy your Staycation!

Jackie works full time as a Financial Auditor. She is a wife to a Staff Sergeant in the Unites States Army and a mother to son age 6 and daughter age 3. Jackie enjoys reading mysteries, gardening, and is proud to be a Frugalista! She blogs at It’s Crazy Cheap!

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