Travel Tuesday: Staycations – Save Money and Have Fun!

by Carrie with Children with 2 comments

It’s summertime and many of us are planning the “perfect” vacation all while keeping a strict budget.  Have you ever thought about taking a staycation?  Vacationing close to home is a great way to explore your own city and have fun with your family too!

View from our Staycation in September 2009

We enjoy taking vacations in our own backyard – I love the feeling of being far away, but still close to home.  My favorite staycation was an overnight (child-free) stay at the beach – we had fun exploring the beach,stayed out too late and woke up to an oceanfront view.

On the weekends, I love packing a picnic lunch to hit the road exploring the area.  One Saturday, we went to my favorite, National Park that’s not too far from our home – Kingsley Plantation.   We had a relaxing lunch overlooking the waterfront and the history of the plantation.  Afterwards, we made our way to the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens – one of Maggie’s favorite places!  She would have stayed all day at the giraffes, if we had let her.  Some may think of it as just a regular day – but to me, it’s a staycation!

Here are my tips for planning the perfect staycation –

  • Contact your local convention and visitors bureau (CVB) – Ask them to mail you a local visitors guide and see if they have discount/coupons too!   (I used to work at my local CVB – they are a great resource!)
  • When booking accommodations – call the local phone number and see if they offer a “local resident rate”.  Never hurts to ask!
  • Take advantage of “free” days at museums! Two of our local museums have certain days throughout the month with free admission!
  • Don’t be afraid to think outside the box!  We have a chocolate company and a beer company that do factory tours – they are fun & free!
  • Take advantage of any city or National Parks!  Soak up nature and maybe sneak in a little education time too!
  • Be on the lookout for coupon mailer magazines! Use those coupons to plan your meals and activities.

If you haven’t had a staycation, give it a try –  you’ll have a great time and the best part?  The drive home isn’t too far and you never have to stop and ask for directions!


Has your family ever been on a staycation?  Tell me all about it!


** I received no compensation for this post.  We love taking staycations in our city and I wanted to share our experiences with you. **


  • Melissa

    Great tips! We love St. Louis Staycations!

    • Carrie with Children

      Thanks, Melissa! I love staycations – so fun! I bet St. Louis has tons of fun things to see/do!