Tuesday, October 14, 2014

See fall foliage by traveling on a shoestring

A sluggish economy doesn't have to derail your fall break or fall foliage vacation this year. You can travel on a shoestring and enjoy a fun filled autumn getaway. The AAA automobile club is projecting that fewer travelers hit the road in 2013. Travelers on fall break or drivers looking to view fall foliage may be able to take advantage of special deals and incentives that make a vacation affordable.

My family has successfully traveled on a dime for years without sacrificing fun. (Actually, it's the only way that we can afford to leave town.) Shoestring travel is about choosing your destination and spending wisely without sacrificing fun.

Most of us know that sites like Hotels.com can help you get good deals. But, did you know that restaurant coupons
can cut your vacation costs? I have used them at Olive Garden, McDonald's, Ruby Tuesday and O'Charley's without problem. Sign up for email clubs and check your local newspaper before leaving home. Clip away, put them in a folder and you're all set to save money.

A couple of years ago, I stopped skipping the books of hotel coupons at rest areas. Talk about saving money on a fall foliage trip! You can save up to 50% off advertised rates at specific hotels. Call ahead to be sure the room rate is available. I have found blackout dates a couple of times.

By all means, avoid weekends. Costs are higher and fall foliage destinations can be more crowded. Motels and Bed and Breakfasts often offer special incentives if you travel Sunday - Thursday. This applies to restaurants too.


Food is a travel expense that you can control. When you're seeing fall foliage, a picnic in the park is a good way to save money, avoid restaurants and enjoy the scenery. Even bottled water and snacks can help.

Who wants to spend time hunting for a restaurant when you can enjoy the beautiful fall foliage? Not me. How about you?