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Wondering how you can save money on your next road trip? I’m going to share a few really good tips on how you can save money as you embark on your next road trip with your family this summer.
Trust me, there are many little ways you can cut corners to save money on your next road trip.
Before I dive in too far, let me share another way you should be saving money – today!
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Road Trip Fun
Believe it or not, but I’m writing this post while I’m riding passenger on a road trip with my family right now. We are in the middle of Utah driving to visit my brother and his family. The trip has been good so far, thankfully no one has been car sick yet!
Road Trips Are An Adventure
As I was sitting here trying to mobile hotspot my phone to work on my blog, I started thinking that I needed to make a blog post about how to save money on road trip. Especially because a lot of families this summer are trying to save as much as possible, and still have a little fun.
Going on a road trip can be one way to save money and still enjoy a vacation. Plus, road trips are just plain fun! I’m not sure I would admit that as a kid, but road trips are always an adventure waiting to happen – right?!
Before I give you a bunch of ideas on ways you can save money on your next road trip with your family, think back in time with me. Remember when you were a kid and your family loaded up in the car and went on a long road trip to visit your grandma?
The long hours in the car, the fighting with your brother from the back seat if he was “on your side”? Am I bringing back memories? Have you ever thought about why your family went on a road trip instead of jumping on a plane to fly to your destination?
I can almost bet the main reason your family hit the open road, like mine did, was due to the fact that it was a much cheaper way to enjoy a vacation. Plus, the road trip itself was part of the vacation.
How To Save Money On A Road Trip
There are quite a few ways you can save money on your next road trip, and I’m happy to share with you how we save as much as possible when our family goes on a road trip.
- Pack Your Own Food
- Plan Your Trip
- Do Your Research
- Bring Your Own Snacks
- Bring Coupons
- Sign Up for Discounts & Download Apps
- Stay With Friends
- Save Receipts
- Drive Your Car
- Utilize your Public Library
Pack Your Own Food
One of the best ways you can save money on your next road trip is to pack your own food to take along. Just like a picnic! Especially if you have kids, fast food along the way can add up with lots of mouths to feed. Load up your picnic basket with everything you need for lunch, add some ice packs and you are set.
I know what you are thinking. Packing for your road trip is hard enough, why would you add to that by having to deal with packing your own food? Or maybe you aren’t thinking that, I just am! But, fact of the matter is, you can save money by packing your own food that you get at the grocery store with coupons ahead of time.
Even if you only plan to pack a picnic for one day of your road trip, and the other days you eat out. Or consider the idea of packing breakfast and lunch and getting fast food for dinner. No matter how you do it, if you pack your own food from home, you will save money.
Plan Your Trip
On of the best ways to save money on your next road trip is to do a lot of proper planning. Make sure you know exactly where you are going, on what day, and just what stops you plan to make along the way.
I’d suggest having a 3-ring binder or large manilla envelope that you make with all your necessary information.
Print out an itinerary of your trip with hotel reservations and all pertinent information and phone numbers you will need along the way.
Don’t forget any discount coupons you find for your accommodations, or gas along the way. Having a plan can help ensure you save money and don’t have many unnecessary expenditures on your next road trip.Planning is essential if you want to save money on your next road trip! Click To Tweet
Do Your Research
Make sure to do your research ahead of time. You should know what roads you will taking to get to your destination and where along the way you can stop for gas and food if needed. If you now what types of places you will find along the way, you can plan ahead by finding coupons and discounts before you go.
If you know there will be a Wendy’s or Burger King in the town you plan to stop at for dinner (because you ate your packed food for lunch), then you can try to find coupons and discounts to those places before you leave for your trip.
You can do the same thing for any fun attractions you plan to enjoy along the way. The better you plan, the more money you will save on your next road trip.
Bring Your Own Snacks
What is it about road trips that make kids so hungry? Seems like every time our family goes on a road trip, less than one hour into the trip my kids are dying from starvation! Right?! So you understand what I mean because your kids die from starvation too?!
You can save money on your next road trip by packing a bag full of snacks for you and your kids so you are not tempted to buy a bunch of high price snacks at the next gas station you find.
Use A Cash System Wallet
Another great way to save money on your next road trip is to use the right type of wallet. I have a very nifty wallet – it’s a Bella Taylor Cash System Wallet that allows me to easily organize and store my cash and coupons in my wallet to bring along with me every time I go anywhere.
You can read all about why I love this wallet so much by reading this post now – Cash System Wallet Every Mom Needs. Plus, I’ve included a nifty discount savings code if you are in the market for your own cash system wallet.
Having the right type of wallet allows you to stay organized, and to use cash, and to store as many coupons as you can find. Food, attractions, hotels, etc, and don’t forget to bring them along!
Sign Up for Discounts & Download Apps
Sign up for as many email newsletters, e-clubs, and/or download apps that you can think of for restaurants and attractions along the route you will be traveling – before you leave.
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My favorite app for saving money on gas is Upside. You’ll love this app!
Upside pays you cash back on your gas purchases and it’s awesome! In fact, if you want to sign up for Upside now using my referral code I’d be ecstatic! You will receive an extra $0.15/gallon bonus the first time you use make a a purchase on gas.
When you do, your email box will be flooded with discounts and coupons that you can print out and take along with you on your road trip, saving you money along the way!Sign up for discounts and download apps to save extra on your next road trip! Click To Tweet
Just take a little bit of time to search the internet for restaurants and fun things you can do on your route. Even if you don’t use them all, at least you will have lots of options of places to eat and things to do along the way, all while saving money!
Read this post, 4 Must-Have Apps That Save & Make You Money, to find out about the other 4 apps I love to save money.
How To Find Discounts
If you are wondering how to actually find coupons and discounts, all you need to do is a Google search for the city you are planning to visit. Let’s pretend you are going to Moab, Utah. Simply type in restaurants in Moab, Utah.
After you have a list of local restaurants, get on each restaurants website and sign up for their email newsletter, e-club, or download their mobile app, if they offer one. A lot of them offer coupons they will email you, or load right to the app, and some even give you an instant introductory offer once you sign up.
I’d suggest doing your research a few weeks before you leave so you have plenty of time to start receiving offers, because some restaurants and attractions don’t send them right away, but they do, once you are on the list for a few weeks.
I like to bring a big yellow envelope full of all the discounts, coupons, and any information I’ve printed out that I don’t want to lose for the trip. I also have a regular letter envelope that I keep inside the big envelope for all my receipts that I collect along the way.
Stay With Friends
Another great way to save money on your next road trip is to stay with friends! This one is pretty obvious, but if you can’t stay with friends or family along the way, you won’t need to pay for a hotel room! Use this as an opportunity to visit friends or family along the way and have a free place to stay!
The final tip I have to help you save money on you next road trip is to save all your receipts!
Especially for gas or any groceries you buy on your trip. Make sure, if you don’t already use Fetch Rewards, that you download this app right now before you leave for your next road trip.
Fetch Rewards – use the REFERRAL CODE: U1BBA (and you’ll get 2,000 points after you sign up)!
This app is awesome and helps you earn money back on all your receipts for gas or groceries and convenience store purchases. Every time you buy gas on your trip, you simply open the app and scan your receipt and you are earning points towards gift cards! If you don’t already use Fetch, you need to download it now!
For more information on Fetch and 3 other apps I recommend that help you earn and save money, read this post: 4 Must-Have Apps That Save and Pay You Money.
Again, I suggest having an envelope that you save all your receipts in and when you internet connection, scan your receipts into Fetch as soon as you can and submit them.
Then, I like to put a checkmark on the receipt so I know I’ve scanned it. Every receipt you scan and submit is earning you points towards gift cards.
Drive Your Car
This one is pretty simple, but you will save money if you drive your own car. Save money by simply using your car instead of paying for a rental for your trip. Seems silly to even say, but if you drive your car you will save the rental fees.
Rental cars can be expensive, especially if you happen to be gone longer than you expected, or if anything happens to the car along the way.
Many times we have rented a car to go on a trip, but we only do that if we can find a great discount, or deal. Otherwise, we just drive our car.
Utilize Your Public Library
Before you hit the open road, make a stop at your local public library and stock up on books, Audio books, and DVDs for the trip. We always let the kids pick out 2 books each to read and 2 DVDs to watch, and then we also grab an Adventures In Odyssey audio book set for all of us to listen to together.
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Adventures in Odyssey is put out by Focus On The Family, and are wholesome mini adventures your kids listen to the have great morals. I have fond memories as a kid myself, listening to the adventures on cassette tape every night before bed.
Our local library carries lots of these Adventures in Odyssey audiobook sets, but if for some reason you can’t find them at your library, you can buy them on Amazon. Buy Now!
The best part about using your local library is that you don’t have to pay a penny for hours of on road entertainment for the whole family.
There you have it! A bunch of great tips on how to save money on your next road trip!
What’s your best tip on how to save money on your next road trip? Comment below and tell me, I’d love to know! Being a stay a home mom doesn’t pay the bills, so finding as many ways as we can to save, is essential, and the best way to do that is to help each other and share tips!
Other Posts To Help You Save Money
- How To Be Frugal When You NEED To Be
- Money-Saving Books Every Stay At Home Mom Needs
- Where You Can Find Free Coupons
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