Top 5 Ways to Save Money on Road Trips
1. Drive at a Sensible Speed
Let’s be honest, we all want to get to our final destination quickly, but we also want to be able to take lots of photos for Facebook or MySpace. Don’t plant the foot while on the road, drive at the speed limit. Avoid using your cruise control in traffic. Besides the savings on gas, it is also safer as you will not have to use your brakes so much and we all know that predictability is a very good thing in these uncertain times, pardon the economic situation reference. Also, be aware that cops look for people that appear underage and will be even more likely to pull you over if you are driving in a crazy manner. That is the thing you want, a seemingly great vacation but having to pay a ticket off, and worse, having to tell your parents.
2. Carpool, Carpool, Carpool
Even if this means that your friend’s SUV carries the people and your car carries the luggage, it is always better to take as few cars as possible. Think of it like this, that is less drivers to have get lost in the middle of rush hour in some city that you know nothing about. This also lets everyone know where their stuff is and nobody is fussing about if they left something in your car or some other person’s car. Also, have a system set up where everyone knows who the designated driver is should you decide to hit the party scene. This will not only reduce confusion when your judgment is not in tip top shape, it could also save your life.
3. Book a cheaper hotel
Yes it sounds a bit weird, but hear me out. Personally, I would much rather spend 65 bucks a night at a good hotel than spend 100+ at a fancier-but-not-necessary hotel. The more money you save on lodging, the more money you have to go out and do more fun stuff. However, do not book a hotel that is really cheap, the possibility of things going wrong goes up as the prices go down.
4. Mix your own drinks
Bars= higher prices, this is basic math. However, you can combat the system by buying your own drinks. Generally you will see a huge savings if you spare yourself the club scene. I am not advocating for partying in your hotel rooms, which is not only stupid but sometimes illegal, especially if you are underage. Please drink responsibly, know your limit before you start into drinking.
5. Set a budget for eating out
Like I said above, you will pay more for food at a restaurant than at Burger King. Ask to see the menu and get whatever is the best deal, or ask the wait staff what they recommend that will not only fill you up but also your wallet. If you must drink while you are out, don’t order multiple drinks, they get expensive really fast. I recommend for eating out, per meal, you budget 20 bucks to cover food, drinks, and tips. Try not to stray too far off this mark, or else you might be hitting your friends up for money and that is never good, it can lead to problems later down the line.
By Joshua Stow