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Save Money On Your Vacations


At this moment, I am officially on vacation! Over the last year, I really haven’t taken a vacation and have overworked myself with full-time work, website work, article writing, and MBA classes, and it feels good to finally take some time out for myself.

My Last Vacation

The last time I was on a vacation was a little over a year ago. At that time, I was in a relationship with a woman that would not stay in a hotel that had a rating less than four stars. We vacationed up north on Mackinac Island and over the course of a few days, we spent well over $1,500. I ignored the cost at the time because our enjoyment and memories were worth more than the cost of the vacation.

The Same Vacation Today

I smile when I think about the relationship that I’m in now. We are on a very similar trip, but instead of staying in four star hotels, we are tenting just off the island in a very nice campground on the lake for just $29 (in comparison to the $225 hotel stay last year).  I suspect that this entire vacation will cost us less than $250, and we’ll probably have a better time as well.

The main difference is the campground costs, but there are many other differences as well. Instead of spending $100 on a hotel dinner (where I didn’t know which silverware to use anyway), we will be cooking two juicy chicken breasts and sweet potatoes (purchased from the grocery store) that cost us a total of $5.00. Instead of renting bikes for $50, we are hiking the island on foot. It’s more adventurous and it’s absolutely free! Rather than spending all of our days on the island (which is the most expensive way to go), we are visiting the island for a day and then exploring the sites off of the island during the other days.

We are having an absolute blast and it has nothing to do with how much money we are spending. I hope you are having a great vacation as well.

Are you having fun without spending a bunch of money? What are you up to?


Weekly Round-Up

Before I left for vacation, I had a chance to read a few great articles. Hope you enjoy them as well!

Is College Worth It? My Decision to Pay for a Private School – by Yakezie

The Reality of How People Get Into Debt, It Just Creeps Up! – by Financial Samurai

Should I Trade In My Car? – by Barbara Friedberg

How Student Loans Can Hurt Your Ability to Get a Home Loan – by One Cent at a Time

How to Survive Unemployment – by Frugal Toad

Tackling Credit Card Debt – by Little House in the Valley

How Much Do I Need to Have in the Bank? – by Funancials

Money Save Money

AUTHOR Derek Sall

Derek has a Bachelor's degree in Finance and a Master's in Business. As a finance manager in the corporate world, he regularly identified and solved problems at the C-suite level. Today, Derek isn't interested in helping big companies. Instead, he's helping individuals win financially--one email, one article, one person at a time.


  1. Wow Derek, sounds like you are having a fantastic vacation already! (And doing it without putting a dent on your wallets) I think its such a blessing when we meet someone who makes us happy and shares our ideals in life and in finances.
    Wish you guys the best of vacations 🙂

    • Definitely! Banks for the comment Simon!

  2. That sounds like an awesome time! For some added free fun, there are over 100 Geocaches on the island. I imagine you may spot a Geocacher or two. Have fun!

    • Doh! Just missed it. We went yesderday…. Maybe next time!

  3. That looks like a lot of fun. We usually plan our vacation months ahead in order to prepare. We also make sure arrange all our schedules on the tentative date to avoid any delays or cancellation of plans. Of course, the most important is the budget that we are alloting for the vacation.

    • It is awesome that we can have such a great time with a fairly minimal budget. I love it.

  4. Have a great vacation! I’ll be reading these great links here.

    • The reads were excellent. Nope you enjoy them! Thanks for stopping by Tony.

  5. No wonder you have pay too much back then. The person/s you are with during a vacation can really dictate how much money you’ll be spending.

    Glad you’re having a good time. Stay safe!

    • You are definitely right with your observation. I’m having a great time. Thanks for the comment Mark!

  6. You current vacation is my kind of vacation: hiking, exploring, and camping.

    • Exactly! We are having a blast! Love it.

  7. I like the nice hotels as much as anyone, but you really can’t beat a good camping trip. National forests are all absolutely free and we have so many around us that there’s no way to ever do them all. Have a good trip.

    • Sounds like I’m in good company with camping!

  8. Sounds like a great vacation and my ideal one at that 🙂

    • It has been awesome so far. Heck, we even had fun in the rain today!

  9. I thought I would stop by Derek and was pleasantly surprised to see I was included in your roundup, thanks for that! Love camping! We go camping every summer and have such a great time. Look forward to cooking over the fire the dough-boys (bisquick on a stick) with jam and butter for breakfast! Enjoy your camping trip Derek!

    • Sounds like you’ve got some camping tips that I need to learn about! 🙂

  10. Sounds like you’re having an amazing vacation, enjoy it! I agree that spending money doesnt necessarily = fun! I usually look for free ways to have fun while vacationing like going to the beach instead of an amusement park.

    • It was a blast! Hiking is a great way to have fun and keep money in your pockets. I’ll definitely be doing more of it in the future.

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