I have been super MIA with blogging lately. Last weekend I went out of town to visit some good friends and this weekend I had my sister in town. Traveling, as well as hosting travelers, can take a big toll on your budget. Lucky for me I saved some Christmas money for my out of town adventure last week. I wish I could say that I saved money on that trip, but it was the opposite. I blew all my Christmas money on delicious foods that I had missed. After my frivolous spending from last week, I was a little nervous when my sister, Tori, said she was coming to visit. I wanted to show her a good time without spending a lot of money. Here are some ways we saved money while she visited.
- We cooked a big batch meal. Tori loves gumbo and her visit coincided with Mardi Gras so we just so happened to have made a huge pot the day before she visited. She was able to heat it up and eat it any time she was hungry, even late at night after Tom and I had gone to bed. I always try to make a big batch meal that I know my guests will like. This way they always have something available to eat.
- Tori and I took advantage of free entertainment. We went to the beach one day for a quick stroll and to our downtown area the next day. Since I am a local I have a free beach parking pass so we didn’t have to pay for parking. I have to admit that we partook in a Starbucks splurge to energize us on our downtown walk. We could have saved even more money if we had brought our own coffee, but who doesn’t love a little Starbucks pick me up?
- Instead of eating out we did two take out meals. One night we got fresh crab cakes from a seafood store and the next night Tom picked up two local pizzas. This was a fun way to show Tori local establishments without us having to order an entire meal and pay for drinks and tips. Of course, this was also a good option for us since we have a 10 month old!
My friend, Tiffany, will be here later this week and I’m going to have to come up with more fun ways to save money while she visits. I love showing people around my new town, but I hate having to shell out money to entertain them. With Tiffany I plan to show her some cute restaurants and bars, but we will only get appetizers or one drink and then come home for our meal. I’m also going to have to come up with some more ideas this summer when my best friend from high school and her family come visit. This will be my first time hosting a family that isn’t mine! I’m pretty excited and I’m already trying to come up with meal ideas to keep our costs low. Anyone else have any good ideas to entertain out of town guests while keeping a budget?