With summer fast approaching and the school year ending already for many students, some of you may be planning trips. Or perhaps you would like to take a trip, but expenses stand in your way. If that is the reason you can not take a trip this summer, check out a few ways to cut down on food expense for a trip.
One of the first things to do is pull out your cooler. If you don't own one, consider purchasing or borrowing one for your trip. The cooler will allow you to bring snacks on the trip, as well as cold drinks or at least ice for your drinks. This is also where plastic containers and zip-loc bags will come in handy. We like to bring fruit, deli meat, cheese, yogurt and other things like this for snacks and or a quick lunch. Use snack size containers and bags, so you can just grab one snack and be done. Bring along a case of water and toss them in the cooler throughout the day to get cold. If your children prefer a little flavor, grab a small box of the flavor packets you can use to flavor your water. You can also make a pitcher of tea or lemonade and fill drink bottles before leaving.
Planning on being in a hotel your first night, or maybe you are only going one day's travel away. Make a casserole a day or two ahead of time for dinner and double it. Freeze the second one and you now have dinner the first night in your hotel. It will help keep things cold on your trip and then just pop it in the microwave for a quick dinner the first night.
We also pack a small tote with our dry goods. We put in bread for deli sandwiches, snack bags of nuts, chips, crackers, along with a few paper plates and plasticware for eating. We toss in a roll of paper towels and a packet of hand wipes. We add a plastic grocery bag or two for trash.
Eating out will definitely be more expensive then bringing or preparing meals, but it is possible to cut down on expenses even here. First of all, eat out for lunch rather than dinner. Many restaurants have a lunch menu. Have children share meals. Mine did, and even at the age of 32, 22 and 18 they often share meals. Like a footlong sub or a pasta dish at a restaurant. If you have a cooler, or you are at a hotel with a refrigerator bring back your leftovers. They can be used for dinner, lunch the next day or even just an evening snack. Look for coupons and special deals. You can oftentimes find coupons in the Sunday paper, restaurants close to the hotel often give discounts by showing your room card, and small, local papers will have specials advertised. Download apps from your favorite restaurants since they will send you specials occasionally.
Many hotels provide a breakfast for their guests, but if yours does not, purchase items to eat there in the morning. Donuts, pastries, and cereal are easy to have on hand in your hotel room.
We always make sure the hotel room has a small refrigerator and microwave. This is big help when trying to eat inexpensively. You can store and then warm up leftovers and keep deli meat and snack items all in your room.
We have managed to take several trips and save on our food by utilizing most of these suggestions. My daughters travel quite a bit and have come up with some of these hints. If you have other ideas, please share them in the comments to help our neighbors!!
Thanks for stopping by where neighbors share!