How to Travel on a Budget Around the US South

The Southern United States prides itself in having a wide array of destinations and experiences to choose from. From historic cities and panoramic mountains to pristine beaches, the South has something for everyone to enjoy. Rich in history and diverse cultures, the south also presents a marvelous opportunity to double as an educational experience for the children. Planning a trip with the entire brood need not be expensive. Here are some ways to enjoy Southern hospitality without having to break the bank…

The famous Bourbon Street, New Orleans
The famous Bourbon Street, New Orleans

Budget, research and plan early

Plan your trip wisely and in advance. When you book your vacations early, chances are you get the best deals for your money. Plus, the head start gives you the time to do your research and plan your route and itinerary. You can choose to take advantage of family tour packages that cover almost everything you may need like airfares, transfers and accommodations, museum fees and the like, just make sure those tempting promo rates have no hidden charges.

For the more DIY families, it pays to check independent services available in the south, like hotel promos with free meals, car rentals, bus tours and walking guided tours. Always keep in mind how much you’re ready to spend and work within that. Today’s online community makes it a breeze to find the best deals, so take advantage of that and click away.

Explore your options

If packaged deals are not for you, scout around for alternative arrangements. For example, if you have relatives or friends down south, appeal to their Southern hospitality and ask to stay with them for free accommodation, making sure of course that you will be perfect house guests. Or, if a long road trip is more your speed, perhaps driving would be best for you. Just make sure the cost of petrol is a better budget alternative to flying and paying for public transport. If you own a mobile home or find a great deal on hiring one, then certainly this could cut costs on a lot of things since you can cook your own food and have a place to sleep in for free.

Having your own vehicle gives you the freedom of exploring off the tourist trail and finding cheaper adventures. There are many ways you can also plan meals in your itinerary. You can bring your own food and just decide on limited times to enjoy local cuisine or find yourself friends to host lunch or dinner for you.

Embrace creativity and adventure

Exploring the southern states presents a lot of opportunity for cheap fun and adventure. Get creative. There are many ways to enjoy without necessarily having to spend a dime. Walk when you can to better enjoy the local scenery. Find festivals in the area where you get to sample southern cuisine for free. Make friends with the locals, and you may get discounts or freebies on meals and souvenirs. Explore the public parks and galleries or inquire about schedules for free museum tours. Ask around for where the local families go to eat, they may not be on the tourist trail but chances are they serve authentic meals and are way cheaper than the usual tourist haunts.

So plan early, research, get creative and look forward to a memorable trip down south, without having to worry about leaving a hole in the family budget.

Read some more budget travel tips.

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