Travel on the cheap
How to Eat Cheap
We have always tried to travel as cheaply as possible if we were to travel at all. And by so saying I hope to encourage others that it is possible to go on a trip on the cheap and therefore keeping costs down as much as possible.
Let us start with the subject of food. As everyone knows we all have to eat, but when you travel it makes a lot of extra expense to eat out and a person cannot eat fast food for every meal and if you have a family especially it can still be costly even eating at fast food restaurants and heaven forbid regular dining, especially dinner!
Add in the fact that for me I have several food allergies and often eating out feels like playing Russian roulette. I have over the years come up with some solutions that work relatively well and save some money on food expenses when travelling and here is some.
If we are staying in a hotel and especially with a family, I try to find one that serves breakfast, these days there are many reasonable one like Quality Inn and/ or la Quinta, etc. that actually serve a real breakfast not just pastries and coffee. It can save quite a bit not having to go to a restaurant. As for me I often cannot eat much of it so I bring my own Gluten free oatmeal and I almost always have a small hot plate and pan that I can boil an egg for breakfast, have some fruit and cup of tea and I am good to go. And if the place has no breakfast but pastries, you can always expand the meal with boiled eggs and have yogurt and fruit in the cooler. Also, many hotels have small fridges in the rooms these days.
Actually, here is what we often travel with: A small one burner hot plate, a set of small camping pans, a microwavable bowl (preferably non- breakable), a small roll of kitchen tools for camping, some mess kits with silver ware, plus a dish cloth, soap and small scrubber. We then have the ability to cook a simple meal in a hotel room with ease, little mess and not disturbing a soul.
We find it very easy to stop at a local grocery and since we always have a cooler we can purchase either some frozen or fresh vegetables and something simple like pork chops and cook it within minutes. Another option is even a frozen dinner at times, which is easy to pop into the microwave and it’s done. The vegetables are always easy to cook in the microwave. Therefore, we have created a decent meal, I have avoided a stomach ache and we have saved at least $25.00-$30.00 for 2 people at a restaurant or $10.00 at a fast food place which is not that good for you. With the availability of prepackaged and ready salads, etc. it is so easy to do this and a meal made in your room can cost as little at $5.00 for two but may cost more depending on what is fixed but its’ still cheaper than eating out.
Lunches are easy to have things to make a picnic and make sandwiches etc. with a cooler along and can save money too plus you will be eating healthier with vegetables, fruit, etc. on board. On another note, we recently purchased a car fridge –cooler that plugs into the cigarette lighter for trips and can plug into electricity in a house or hotel room. I will keep you posted on how this does but if it works well then we can save money on buying ice when we go on our road trip this summer. The one we got was by Coleman, the larger size and it was about $89.00 on Amazon.com plus we bought the adapter to plug into electricity and so all told I spent about $100.00 with the free shipping. At the sporting goods store it would have been $140.00 for the whole works, so I saved about $40.00 which I always appreciate.
All in all, you eat healthier, save considerable money and can get to do more travel because it will cost you less and if you can afford it you can still accommodate eating out some of the time and that way you get the pleasure of dining out too.
Happy Travels to you and Yours!