10 Tips for Spur-of-the-moment Road Trips


Know Your Budget

Don't travel like a millionaire when you've got the bank account of a pauper. Know how much you can spend on your road trip and budget accordingly.

For example, if you've got a budget of $1,000 for a five-day trip, you know you can safely spend $200 a day. Remember that you'll have to divide that money between lodging, food, attractions and any other incidentals you might need.

Here are a few ways to make a limited budget stretch further on the road:

  • Cook your own meals. Find a hotel with in-room kitchens and prepare your own food, which you can buy at a local supermarket. If you do go out to eat at a restaurant, make lunch your biggest meal. The prices are lower at lunch than at dinner.
  • Stay at budget hotels. Figure that you won't be spending much time in your room if you're sightseeing. Just make sure the hotel is clean and comfortable by reading reviews online.
  • Go off-season. Traveling when everyone else is at home means you'll find great deals on hotel rooms and lower costs on attractions.
  • Avoid touristy spots. Look for out-of-the-way spots, like local parks or museums, which are more likely to be inexpensive. Some attractions, including museums, offer free admission on certain days of the week.
  • Use cheap gas if you can. Visit GasBuddy.com to find the least expensive gas stations along your route.