How to Plan A Weekend Getaway On A Weakened Budget

view of trees with fall foliage, view from calm lake

When Lori and I get extremely busy at the Inn, it is hard to keep up with posting on the Blog site.  As many of you know, we just completed a major update to our website thanks to our partner, Odysys.  With an extremely busy summer season, we are just learning the new system for creating and posting on our blog.  I’m sure many of you can relate to learning yet another thing during a very busy time.  Fortunately, we received a guest blog from a new friend. This allowed us to save time writing while we learned to create a post. We also learned how to use the editing tools to make it more relevant to our readers.

About Our Guest Blogger

Today we share a guest blog with you from our new friend, Daniel Sherwin. Daniel runs a site called DadSolo.com. His goal is to help parents better equip themselves on the journey that is parenthood. As a single dad raising two children for the past three years, he admits there is a lot to learn, but notes that every day is definitely an adventure and a blessing. On his site he shares ideas that have worked for him.  On to Daniel’s post…

How to Plan A Weekend Getaway On A Weakened Budget
Lady taking picture with cell phone
Photo credit: Pixabay

While family vacations are an excellent way to bond, it is also important for single parents to take some time off to themselves. Everyone needs some space to breathe, after all. Even if a week-long retreat is out of reach, a quick getaway can fit into any budget or schedule. Sadly, many people think that they can’t afford to travel, so they tend to write off the idea entirely. Others fear that being too far away will prevent them from acting quickly in case of an emergency with their children.

Instead of assuming you can’t travel at all, consider options that make travel more affordable, such as taking a weekend trip. By sticking within a two- to four-hour drive, you will give yourself some space but still be close enough to show up if you are needed.

Goodbye Guilt

First things first, there is no shame in admitting to yourself that you need time away from your progeny. As a single parent, you devote not only the best of yourself but all of you into caring for your kids. Stepping away, even if it’s just for a night or two, can help you refocus and refuel your own passions. Though it might sound contradictory, being something other than just “mom” or “dad” for a day can help you be a better parent. Perhaps most importantly, stepping aside periodically allows your children to develop a sense of independence and to learn to trust the other adults in their lives.

Consider Timing Carefully

 If you’re the spontaneous type, or an opportunity arises, taking off on a spur-of-the-moment getaway can be budget-friendly with last-minute travel deals. Most of the time, though, it’s best to plan ahead to find the best deals. The general rule for budget travel is to go when it’s off-season for your destination, but that doesn’t mean in-season travel is out of the question.

When you want to go during the peak time of year, there may be local events that are free or cheap. Travel Wisconsin notes many destinations across the state that make the most of the beautiful natural scenery and Wisconsin’s natural wonders. There are also many places for fall get-aways, many that are free or low-budget.  And if you want to plan a quick get-away before summer is over, there are still many things to do throughout Wisconsin this summer.  These include local foods & festivals, arts & culture, and outdoor fun.

Whenever you choose to get away, remember to take a little time beforehand to ensure that your home will be secure while you’re gone. If your home or apartment will be vacant while you’re away, do a few home safety checks before you leave. Double-check that doors and windows are locked, the garage is secure, and that no valuables are visible. These simple steps don’t take very long, and they’re worth it to make sure you can enjoy your trip without worrying about what could happen while you’re away.

Get There for Less

 If you own a car, driving is usually less expensive than flying, especially for a short, weekend get-away. If you don’t own a car, car rentals can be very affordable if you pick the right time and plan ahead. Either way, going somewhere close, ideally within just a few hours’ drive, will keep transportation costs down. It will also maximize the time you have to actually enjoy your getaway. If you fly, you still need transportation to get around while you’re there, adding to your costs. Planning ahead can help you save on car rentals, or you may be better off using ride-share apps or taking public transportation in some cases.

Eat Like a Local

Travel usually means eating out, but restaurant meals can be pricey. One way to save money is to eat more as you would at home — hit up the local markets and prepare some of your own meals.  Access to a refrigerator and/or microwave provided at most Inns and hotels are all that is needed.  If staying at a bed and breakfast, many times the full breakfast is included in the room price. This gets you off to a good start to the day and allows for lighter meals later.  To save money when you do eat out, HuffPost recommends avoiding restaurants in touristy areas. Eating where the locals eat means you will get a more authentic meal without falling prey to markup.

Clipboard checklist with blue pen and blue check marks
Image courtesy of Pixabay

 

Everyone has different “must-haves” on their travel wish list. Sometimes, the best way to save money and make the most of your trip is to decide where to save and where it’s worth splurging. Recharging your batteries through new experiences, relaxing venues, and cutting costs without too much compromising are the ultimate travel goals. Weekend get-aways are the perfect way to make that happen.

We hope you enjoyed Daniel’s article!  Enjoy the rest of your summer – Keith & Lori