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Thursday Thrifty Throwdown: Fun on A Budget Challenge #3

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Ahhhh, vacation. As we've been discussing all week, it is vacation time, a time off from work, pile the kids into the car and head out...but as you plan a family road trip, you have to be aware of some hidden costs that may pop up around the turn. For the third round of our Fun on a Budget Challenge, we have some things to think about before you buckle up the seat belts to drive to your vacation spot.

-- Be sure driving is your best option. As much as you may think you are saving money, do a good cost comparison on how much it will cost to drive and fly. Check out this calculator on BeFrugal.com, which breaks down the nitty-gritty.

-- Get prepared before you go. Investing in a good car tune-up and tire inspection can save you bundles to avoid an emergency breakdown on the road.

 -- Know how much the gas will be. The folks at AAA are experts in this. They have a fuel cost calculator. Get some great apps that help you find the best gas prices on the road like GasBuddy.

-- Remember the tolls for road and bridges. Though not too much, $5 here and $7.50 there can add up.

-- Bring lunches and snacks with you in the minivan. Yes, you will need breaks along the road, but make them for maybe a soda or an ice cream cone, not a full lunch or a lot of bags of chips. That can save you at least $20-$30 a day.

What did I miss -- add your best road trip tips here! 


by on Jun. 21, 2012 at 12:00 AM
Replies (11-20):
by Bronze Member on Jun. 21, 2012 at 9:42 AM


by on Jun. 21, 2012 at 10:16 AM
Good tips!
by on Jun. 21, 2012 at 10:17 AM

we haven't road tripped much not far at all but when we do it we do these things

by Member on Jun. 21, 2012 at 10:40 AM


by Jessica on Jun. 21, 2012 at 10:44 AM

entertainment is a great one! make sure you have something for the kiddos to do.

by Gold Member on Jun. 21, 2012 at 10:59 AM

Quoting KristinRox:

Bring things for entertainment. Its much better to have the kids entertained rather then hearing the "are we there yet?" speech, over and over and over and over and over and over and over........

GREAT reminder!

by Gold Member on Jun. 21, 2012 at 11:00 AM
1 mom liked this

Quoting dusky_rose:

Great tips! If you bring a cooler, you can keep cold drinks in your car also. I like to freeze bottles of water and use them to keep the other drinks cool, then when they thaw I can drink those also.

Yes! Take your own drinks!

by Member on Jun. 21, 2012 at 12:13 PM
1 mom liked this

Go the speed limit.  Those ticket costs can really add up, just ask DH, lol. 

by Nikki on Jun. 21, 2012 at 12:17 PM

Great tips!

by on Jun. 21, 2012 at 12:18 PM
Yes! Activities are a must! Our Car DVD players are lifesavers!!!
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