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Budget-Friendly Momcation

15 Simple Tips For a Budget-Friendly Momcation That Actually Work!

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Mama, do you need a break? Me too. And I’m not talking about a hot shower by yourself, even though that is nice. I mean a real break. Let me introduce you to a “momcation.” Even better – let’s get you scheduled for a budget-friendly momcation!

A momcation doesn’t have to be extravagant, it doesn’t even have to be an overnight trip (great if it can be though!). The beauty of a budget-friendly momcation is that you can take the time away you need, without stressing about the repercussions in the bank.

If an extra budget-friendly momcation is what you need, consider setting up a monthly savings system. Put away any amount you can spare each month, and over time, you will have enough to take your well-deserved rest.

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What is a momcation?

As you can probably guess, a momcation is a vacation…for moms, without your kids! Look, I love my kids as much as any mother out there, but I also need some time away from them. As much as I love them, they’re not the whole of my identity; I’m a wife, writer, fitness instructor, artist, neat freak, and so much more!

A momcation gives you a chance to refresh, rejuvenate, and reconnect with yourself.

Why do moms need a momcation?

According to this post from the New York Times, the popularity of momcations is on the rise, and deservedly so!

Being a mom is a wonderful blessing that brings indescribable joy and happiness, but let’s not forget that it also requires a lot of work and nearly all of your time. Moms often feel as if they invented the term “multitasking” while trying to balance all of the responsibilities and duties of motherhood.

You may be thinking that a momcation sounds selfish. Respectfully, let me remind you that you can’t pour from an empty cup. When moms have a chance to focus on their own needs, they will be much better equipped to attend to the needs of their families with grace.

Budget-Friendly Momcation

Like we said earlier, choosing a budget-friendly momcation will give you the break you deserve and desperately need, while also not causing stress and tension with your finances.

Another benefit of choosing a budget-friendly momcation is that it provides the possibility of taking more than one. Sound tempting? I thought so too.

If you and your spouse decide to go for an all-out splurge on your momcation, go for it! But in my family, taking a handful of smaller overnight or weekend trips is much more doable.

For me, knowing I could have some time to myself every 4-6 months is much more motivating than once a year (or two!).

how to take a budget-friendly momcation

Where should I go for a momcation?

Ooh, this is where it starts to get fun – planning your budget-friendly momcation!

Think about where you live – is there a historical area you’ve been wanting to explore? Maybe somewhere known for antiquing and shopping? Does the beach always seem to be calling your name? Do you long to be out in nature and disconnected from “real life?”

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Spa/Massage Getaway
  • Shopping Spree
  • Isolated Cabin
  • Sporting Event
  • Beach
  • Amusement Park
  • Lakeside retreat
  • Roadtrip
  • Concert
  • Staycation

There are also many different ways to take a momcation. You could take one by yourself or with friends, seek to relax or chase adrenaline, be isolated, or get caught in the excitement of city life.

Whatever you choose, the important thing is that your momcation is something YOU enjoy.

15 Tips For a Budget-Friendly Momcation

Are you convinced yet that taking a budget-friendly momcation is possible?! Let’s get into 15 specific tips to make sure it happens for you.

1. Travel in the off-season

Traveling in the off-season is a great way to save on your momcation. Hotels and accommodations, travel, and even attractions can all fluctuate with seasonality.

For example, I live in Florida. Let me advise you to not come here during Spring break if you’re looking for a budget-friendly momcation. A few weeks ago, my husband had to fly home to Oklahoma. His return trip was 3x as much, all because of its proximity to Spring break season!

Also try to avoid any national holidays or events, as these will increase the cost of your travel.

Of course, these seasonal locations are popular for a reason. But if you can be flexible and are looking to save money, travel during the off-season.

2. Look for free activities

It is possible to have a great time on your momcation without spending big bucks by looking for free activities at your destination. Check places like the online community calendar, tourism websites and brochures, and local parks & recreation departments.

Remember, things like sleeping in, watching an uninterrupted hour of TV, and relaxing at the pool are all free and are things that moms crave!

3. Travel midweek

Depending on work and school schedules, traveling midweek may require a little extra planning and coordination, but saving some money on your momcation would be well worth the effort.

According to USA Today, Tuesday through Thursday are the least expensive days to travel. The most expensive days to travel are Friday and Sunday as most people are beginning and ending a new work week.

4. Plan ahead

Having a complete itinerary isn’t necessary because plans change and you may find other things you would rather do once you get there. But by planning ahead, you can reduce last-minute spending and impulse buys. You may also find special offers and deals online for discounted tickets or package deals.

By having at least a rough idea of what you plan to do on your budget-friendly momcation, you can know how much you have to actually budget for and save.

15 simple tips for a budget-friendly momcation

5. Consider a “staycation”

Who says you have to leave town to have a vacation? By choosing a staycation, you reduce your travel expenses and can explore the fun things to do in your own hometown.

If possible, send your spouse and kids away to family or friend’s house, or check yourself into a hotel. I vote for the hotel so you don’t see the chores and projects needing to be done at home, haha.

6. Make it a group trip

Making your momcation a group trip is a great way to keep it budget-friendly. Traveling with friends can reduce your costs (as we’ll see later) but also open you up to new experiences and help you build more meaningful and personal relationships with other moms.

Sometimes, it’s just nice to visit with other women in similar life stages to know that you’re not alone.

7. Share hotel rooms

Reason #1 to bring friends on your momcation – sharing the cost of a hotel room! Recently, I booked two nights away for a group of 4 and we only spent about $35 each on the hotel. For two nights!

If you do share hotel rooms, check the room and bed size to make sure there is enough space for everyone to be comfortable. You can look into suites or rooms with separate bedrooms for a little more room.

8. Split meals

Another reason to bring friends – you can split meals! Instead of ordering separate plates, what about sharing a pizza? To me, pizza is the ultimate budget-friendly meal no matter where you are. Or maybe you can’t decide between two entrees? Go halvsies with a friend and try both!

You may also want to eat two heavier meals instead of three more regularly sized portions.

9. Don’t shop for souvenirs

Mama, I know how much you want to spend money on your family and bring them home surprises. I really do. It can be more fun to spend money on our kiddos than on ourselves. But for a budget-friendly momcation, skip the gift shop. It will be ok! This trip is about you. You can show your family (especially your husband) how much you love and appreciate them when you get home without a new t-shirt or toy.

10. Research budget airlines

If your momcation requires airfare, check out some budget-friendly airlines such as SpiritFrontier, or Allegiant.

Generally speaking, these airlines will have you pay for bags (including carry-ons), charge for seat selection, and offer onboard snacks and beverages for purchase. They may also have limited scheduled flights, so you may need to be a little bit more flexible. But, if your goal is to just get from Point A to Point B, these airlines are a great option!

My family flies with Allegiant multiple times a year. The low fares make it possible for us to travel to see family halfway across the country much more frequently than we otherwise would be able to.

Bonus: Many of these airlines have their own deals and promotions. If the time is right, you can catch a MEGA deal on your airfare by booking directly.

11. Use a hotel rewards program

By joining a reward program such as Hotels.com or Booking.com, you earn points for each night’s stay. These points can translate to discounts, free breakfast, room upgrades, or even a FREE night.

Members at these sites also get notified first of any flash sales or offers and are given secret deals on rooms that aren’t available outside of the reward program.

Since you’ll be booking a hotel anyways, it only makes sense to get rewarded for it!

12. Search Groupon

Groupon is your friend! Not only can you find coupons for dining and attractions, but also your accommodations and travel! Groupon has thousands of deals under their “getaways” category…perfect for a budget-friendly momcation!

If you’re still unsure of where to go, you can easily search for inspiration using their “Interests” search selection. Browse interest ideas such as

  • Under $99 (uh, yes please!!)
  • Last Minute
  • New Deals
  • Outdoor & Adventure
  • All-inclusive Trips
  • Beach
  • Premium
  • International & Tours

13. BYOB Bring Your Own Beverages

I don’t know about you, but I also seem to get so thirsty on vacations! Maybe it’s because I’m not in my normal element and remembering to drink as much water as I usually do. The last thing I want to do on a budget-friendly momcation is to spend $3 on a bottle of water! For the same amount at a grocery store, you can buy a whole case of water!

The same thing applies to soda or other beverages – according to Business Insider, the average markup at a restaurant is 1,150%!! That is just crazy! There’s nothing wrong with an ice-cold Coke, but keep them to a minimum or hit the grocery store beforehand to save on expenses.

With most hotels including an in-room refrigerator, you can easily stock the fridge and come back to a refreshing beverage after a day of exploring.

how to take a budget-friendly momcation 15 tips

14. BYOB Part II: Bring Your Own Breakfast

Many hotels offer a free breakfast as part of their stay, but several of the higher star-rated chains do not. Paying for breakfast at a hotel can easily cost you $15 or more, and that may only be for coffee and fruit! If I’m going to pay that much for breakfast, I’d better have an entire spread served to me in bed. Instead, stock up on items beforehand such as granola bars, oatmeal packets, fruit, or cereals. These items are inexpensive and easily packed.

You may also consider opting for brunch, and combine the two meals to save money if you prefer to eat out.

If a free breakfast is a make-or-break deal item for you, make sure you filter out all other hotel options in your search.

15. Pack Snacks

Wow, I must really be hungry tonight or something…more on food?! Hey, this is Flawlessly Fit-ISH right…you guys know I don’t turn down a snack. Much in the same way as beverages and breakfast foods, packing your own snacks can be a big money saver while on your momcation. Budget-friendly snacks such as chips, popcorn, crackers, fruit, and yes, some sweet things will cover all of your bases when hunger strikes.

Quick Tips on Packing for a Budget-Friendly Momcation

Sometimes, less is more. Keep that in mind when packing for your momcation. The last thing you want is to have to drag around a huge suitcase full of things you probably won’t use anyways. Keep it light!

If possible, use a carry-on or duffel bag like this one. I can never have too many floral patterns in my life, haha, and I like how this one can be folded up and easily stored when not in use.

Save even more space by packing travel-sized toiletries, especially if you will only be gone a few days. You can buy the little containers in the dollar section of many stores to fill with your own product, or consider buying a ready-to-go travel set such as this.

Lastly, investing in a cute hanging travel toiletry bag will help keep you organized and reduce the risk of getting shampoo all over your clean clothes (no fun, trust me). I love how it has a built-in hook to easily be stored on the towel rack, coat hook, or even a door knob.

Final Tips on Taking a Budget-Friendly Momcation

Mama, when we take care of ourselves, we are better able to care for others. Regardless of the length of time and budget, you can afford, it is possible to enjoy a budget-friendly momcation. I would say that it’s the one vacation you can’t afford not to take.

When planning your momcation, remember that this trip is all about you! Make sure to choose something that you find relaxing and enjoyable. And don’t forget to thank your spouse too 😊.

I’d love to hear from you – what are some of your favorite ways to save on travel? Share them below and I’ll feature your advice in an upcoming post!

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