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Summer Travel On A Budget-The KEY things

We all know how glorious traveling can be at times.  The constant in and out of hotels, pit stops to go potty, kids whining in the car, and not to mention all the wonderful “road food”. All of those pit stops really add up especially if you’re on a budget, have kids and plan on taking a trip longer than a weekend.  Looking back at past vacations I’ve noticed that food was always one of our great expenses.

We just started our 2.5 week vacation to visit the majority of our family who live in Texas.  We’re traveling from Colorado with a two year old, an infant, my husband whom is a huge protein eater and myself (which I’m breastfeeding).  So missing a meal is NOT on our agenda.  Typically we eat very clean, lean meats and lots of vegetables, so when it comes to just stopping and grabbing somethings it’s VERY hard to chose something because of our eating habits.  Therefore, we really have to pay for something on the cleaner side that won’t make us feel icky after all the driving and sitting.  We absolutely cannot afford to buy meal after meal after meal. Just like 99% of other people who travel, we travel on a budget.  Anymore you have to, because it is so darn expensive to go out on a family outing.

Being the frugal couponing person I am, I always try and cut corners where I can and SAVE!  Most families always pack snacks to take on any trip, but what you take is the key.  Taking snacks that are higher in protein will help keep you fuller longer.  Grilled chicken, Kraft String Cheese, greek yogurt, boiled eggs, protein bars, etc. are, in my opinion, the absolute best the things to take.  Before we leave for any long trip I ALWAYS make chicken to keep in the cooler. We make grilled chicken sandwiches and add hummus, guacamole and cheese and eat those on the road.  You can even buy shaved turkey and chicken for sandwiches from your Commissary Deli.  They are higher in protein also.

Let me break this down for a minute:

Bread $2.00

3.5 lbs. of chicken $7.00

Small tub of Hummus $2.50

Kraft Cheese Slices $2.00

You’re paying $13.50 for 12-15 sandwiches along with having LOTS of chicken leftover.  For $35, while shopping at your Commissary, you can supply a lot of food for you trip.

There are so many other things to remember while traveling to help stay within your budget.  We all love to get where we are going sooner rather than later, but try not to speed. 1) If you get a ticket then you’ll probably have to pay big bucks for that ticket. Plus, speeding only drains your gas tank quicker.  2) Make a complete check list well before you leave to make sure you have EVERYTHING so you don’t have to purchase anything. 3) Use coupons when going out to eat and possibly try and order waters.  There are lots of great coupon apps you can pull up on your phone and you can get a 2L of soda for the same price you pay for a glass of soda at a restaurant. 4) Ask for military discount everywhere you go. 5) While driving try not to cluster eat and drink lots of water to help stay full.

Happy and safe travels!

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