Affordable Road Trips – How to Save Money and Still Have Fun

Summer time is the right time for taking a week off work, packing up your family and heading out on a vacation. Unfortunately, steep airline prices and even steeper hotel costs mean Hawaii, Bali and Tahiti are out of the question. Does that mean you have to settle for a staycation, lounging around on the couch in your finest Tommy Bahama shirt watching reruns of Gilligan’s Island? No way. Instead of flying off to exotic locales, you can hit the highway on an exciting road trip like countless families have done since the first Model Ts rolled out of Detroit.

Although a lot less expensive than air travel, road trips can still end up costing you a fair amount of coin. To keep your interstate trek under budget, follow these penny-pinching tips.

Pack a Tent

Even if you’re willing to brave the germ-infested sheets and crusty comforters at budget motels, they can still end up running $80 a night. That adds up fast. Don’t be lured in by that neon “Vacancy” sign when you can enjoy the great outdoors by camping out. Before you head off, hop online and do a quick survey of your route. Camp grounds are sprinkled all over the place, usually within a few miles of major freeways. You will have to pay a minor fee to use many camp grounds, but the rates are generally under $20 a night and include access to bathrooms and showers (showers are critical…nothing makes for grumpier travels than a car full of gamey passengers).

To enjoy a few creature comforts while you’re roughing it, you can get an SUV tent that connects to your ride’s rear end. Once set up, you can run your heater, watch a movie on your in-cab entertainment system, or just listen to the radio.

Bring Along a Kitchen

If you’re eating out at restaurants three times a day, you’re pouring money down the drain. Even the bountiful selection of cheap fast food found along the way can really take a bite out of your budget…not to mention that all that greasy grub forces you to make more bathroom breaks. Instead of shelling out the bucks for foul food, bring along a cooler full of scrumptious food and a camping stove. Most rest stops have picnic tables that you can use to prepare your feast, and every town along the way has grocery stores for resupplying. If you have a trailer hitch, you can even get a hitch-mounted grill and fire up some serious eats.

Boost Your MPGs

Gas is expensive all year round, but the prices tend to spike in the summer months because more people are out on the roads. But there are a number of tricks you can do to eke out more miles from every gallon in your tank:

  • First, do a quick tune-up before you take off, including changing out your air filter. A clogged air filter limits the amount of air flowing into your motor, so you have to compensate with more fuel.
  • Second, make sure your tires are properly inflated and check them every time you stop for gas.
  • Third, use your air conditioner instead of rolling down your windows. Open windows throw off your ride’s aerodynamics, and the drag this creates is more damaging to your fuel economy than the A/C.

Travel Guides- An Overview

You can get reliable, useful information from
guidebooks. Yet, some are better than others
and often, it’s important to know what you’re
looking for when you travel, what your goals
are and what your pocketbook can handle.

As I often tell my fellow Traveling Paupers,
a guidebook is just that— a guide. Not a set
of rules that are fixed in stone. Never let any
guidebook chain you down to a fixed itinerary.
Be adventurous, add your own mix of wonder
and discovery to the trip you plan, and use your
guidebook as an introduction to the locale,
not the final arbiter of what is valuable.

That being said, I’d like to explore some of
the guidebooks I’ve found useful in making
trips around the world. It is, by no means, a
comprehensive listing of all the books
available to you. But this sampling should
give you a very good starting point to discover
what travel books can offer.

The Michelin Red Guides

Provide detailed information about European
hotels and restaurants, while the Green Guides
focus on European art, history, and places of
interest. They tend to be best suited to travel
that isn’t too budget conscious. Upscale.

The Fielding Guides

Provides a candid, well written guide especially
good at finding off-beat, unusual destinations.
I recommend them to Paupers that wish to travel
off the beaten track. Unique.

Fodor’s Travel Guides

Recently celebrating their 60th birthday with almost
100 titles in the Gold Line series. They emphasize the
West, but the Fodor’s Guides cover countries though-
out the world. They provide good historical and
cultural information as well as practical recommendations.
I like it for those who wish to stay on the middle
of the road. Perennial Bestseller.

The Frommer Series

The old $5. A Day series has become the $40 a Day
series. They offer touring guides, city guides, and special
editions. While emphasizing Europe and the United States
they take pains to describe restaurants, hotels and
nightlife as well. Budget.

The Lonely Planet Series

Called, simply enough, the LP, they have earned a great
reputation for worldwide budget and independent travel.
There are five series offered, but my favorite is the
On A Shoestring guide, coving everything from a
specific country, to a region or continent for the low
budget traveler. Eclectic.

The Travel Handbook Series

This series contains more than 50 books from Moon
Publications and are updated annually. That’s their
greatest value in my judgment. Contemporary.

Europe Through The Back Door

Authored by Rick Steves. You get an itinerary
and “must see” list of sights for limited European
trips. A no brainer.

The Rough Guides

Focuses on college-age travelers in Europe. Much
the same flavor as you will find in the LP series;
irreverent and directed to the budget conscious.
Street smart.

A good guidebook makes travel vastly easier. Use them
even when you’re only traveling in your arm chair.
The best spark your imagination and lead you to
unknown discoveries and adventure.

Victor K. Pryles©2005 –

Seven Highly Effective Tips Assisting With Achieving Success

Sometimes in life all we need is a little direction, a road map and or a blue print to guide us on the road to success. From this day forward, you have before you a multiplicity of wisdom and knowledge to assist you in achieving success.

The seven highly effective tips to assist with achieving success will not only provide a platform for achieving success, it will catapult you to your rightful place in your life. The seven tips read as follows:

1. Get out of your comfort zone.

2. Do what you love to do and stop doing what you have always done.

3. Come up with one good idea and stick with it through fruition.

4. Believe in yourself.

5. Worker harder than you have ever worked before.

6. Do not wait for the stars to properly align, design you own stars leading to success.

7. The grace and mercy of God is sufficient. Pray, work, do and God will take care of the rest.

As I address each of the seven tips, think about how it impacts you and the transformation you are going to receive, leading to your success. When you incorporate these highly effective tips in your tool kit, you will achieve success.

Get out of your comfort zone. All to often, some people get a little too comfortable with their daily life and it results in stagnation. On the other hand, when we get out of our comfort zone, we expand our experiences, create new ideas, become more innovative and become inspired to consistently discover more and more about our purpose.

For example, have you ever parasailed before? I had never parasailed before I took a trip to Aruba and decided it was time for me to learn how to do it. I paid the required activity fee and was strapped to the back of a boat and away we went into the wild blue yonder.

Parasailing is more fun than I imagined and I discovered a few things about myself I never knew and it was this, I like flying high in the air behind a speeding boat in the tropics. Like with anything new, I parasail whenever my schedule permits, because it is a lot of fun.

Do what you love. How many times have we heard the cliche, do what you love? We can mutually agree we have heard, do what you love quite a bit. To me, do what you love is the same thing as, do what you are passionate about

By the way, what are you passionate about? Case in point, do you thoroughly enjoy watching a good action movie or flying to a dream destination like Australia. If you do what you love, chances are you will be a lot happier because you will not be doing what you have always done and once we embrace a different mindset, we are free to be who we were born to be.

Come up with one good idea. If you have ever seen a scatter gram you know different colors are all over the place. Likewise when people come up with one good idea, if they stick with it they will achieve success. The other side of the idea coin is, one idea may generate additional ideas and one will tend to follow every idea that comes to mind. To avoid flowing every idea until nothing is accomplished, it is much better to nurtured and more one single idea until you bring it to fruition. Once the one good idea works for you, the other ideas you considered manifest and then incorporate them into a complete system and success is yours for the asking.

Believe in yourself. One of the most powerful tips you will discover is believing in yourself. Embrace strong belief in yourself and your abilities and you will exponentially increase success in life. Believing in yourself also addresses belief in your abilities and your mental toughness because one has to have the ability to move beyond their current limitations leading to success.

Work harder than you you’ve ever worked before. One of the great things about life is that when we look in the mirror we cannot fool ourselves. Likewise when it comes to work, we either know we pushed ourselves to another level or we coasted across the finish line. One thing is for sure, if you want to be a huge success, you must work harder than you ever had in your life.

Do not wait for the stars to align properly, design your own stars leading to success. There is never a perfect time or right time to achieve success. There will never be an ideal time to create the business you want to lead, or buy the house you want, drive the car you want or play for a professional basketball team. What I’m saying is, you proceed towards the mark you are trying to reach and make the best of the conditions taking place in the moment.

The grace and mercy of God is sufficient. Pray, work and do and God will take care of the rest. This is without a doubt the most important of the seven effective tips to assist in achieving success. Why?

When we ensure our plans are the plans of God, we position ourselves to simply follow through with precision when it comes to achieving success. For example, when you want something so bad that you pray about it to happen, likelihood is you will get it. God has all the grace and mercy the world will ever need, tap into your spiritual resources and God will order your steps and get you on the right track leading to success.

Now it is time for you to incorporate and embrace the seven highly effective tips to assist with achieving success. Get into motion and see your dreams come to fruition, start today.