Thursday, November 22, 2018

Frugal Thursday, the vacation edition

Even though we've been on vacation, we did have some frugal wins. Caveat, Hawaii is by no means frugal, and we certainly did a balance of splurge vs not, but wanted to share some of our more frugal choices:

Non-vacation stuff:

  • I used a lingering gift card & combined with great sales to buy two items on my Christmas list. I'll also be receiving around another $4.62 back from eBates, lowering my total out of pocket spending for the two gifts to $8. (Retail price of $60). 
  • All pre-vacation meals made at home (or, for free at work)
  • M fixed the garage door vs calling a repair man. We did have to buy $100 worth of parts, but used an Amazon gift card for that.

Frugal(ish) vacation options:

  • Packed snacks & lunch for the flight, and ate breakfast before we left. 
  • Brought our own water bottles/flasks for the airport, and used them on the trip to avoid buying bottles of water
  • Where possible, brought things from home vs buying there. This includes snorkeling sets for the kids (on their third vacation), coffee pods, paper plates, laundry tabs (leftover from our last trip, as we use liquid at home), ziplock baggies for storing food, etc.
  • I used my Marriott benefits to get two free continental breakfasts/day. I don't eat breakfast, and M filled in with things we'd bought at Costco + leftovers
  • We bought groceries at Costco, even though our hotel room didn't have a kitchen. We made things work by bringing our panini maker from home, and requesting a microwave. The panini maker ended up being a huge win, as we were able to grill bagels for breakfast, make sandwiches to go, and grill up chicken patties that we bought.
  • We ate most lunches in the room, used the continental breakfast benefits, and then ate dinners out. 
  • We looked for happy hour dinner options, and brought wine from home
All in all, the vacation was still expensive, but I'm very happy with our tradeoffs. We had one expensive dinner out (M & Sam had sushi at a nice restaurant watching the sun set over the ocean), and had a fabulous trip. More details to come. I need to go sort out Thanksgiving now! :-)

Happy Thanksgiving, all!


  1. Do you have heat yet? Glad you had a good time on your vacation, money well spent in my mind (I can always justify travel if you can afford it and are not charging it with the money not in the bank) Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Great ways to balance thrift and wonderful vacation experiences.

  3. Bringing a panini press on vacation is very impressive!

    - Dar @ anexactinglife