Hit The Bowling Alley During Your Staycation

Our girls love to go bowling and what better way to go than for FREE! Check out how Katie at Cincinnati Cents used FREE bowling to keep their summer staycation on budget!

Have something you want to share with our readers? Check here to see how you can share!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Melissa & Doug Trunki Just $30 each

We are planning our vacation for October and I came across these super cute Melissa & Doug Trunki for around $30! How cute are these things! They have several designs to choose from, so this way no fighting over who has which one!

With Subscribe & Save, if you do not want to continue your subscription, you can just cancel it once your first shipment arrives. To snag savings on shipping, take advantage of FREE Super Saver Shipping for orders over $25 or be an Amazon Mom or an Amazon Prime Member and get FREE Two-Day Shipping.

Don’t forget to check out my other Amazon Deals for more savings.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Frugal Travel Tips: Create a Kids Travel Kit

Kids’ Travel Kit- Guest Post from Emily at Peppy Socks!

It is summer! YAY! Summer means fun road trip adventures for many of us. If your toddler is like mine, the iPad and movies last ten minutes if we are lucky. So it takes a little extra preparation to make sure he is entertained in the car (switching out toys what seems like every two minutes). Before running to the store to buy new toys, I decided to find all the possible “toys” I could around the house to add to the car travel kit. Below is a list of some items….FYI: the straws were a HUGE hit!

WARNING – your backseat might be a bit messy when you arrive and it is possible you may have a child covered in band-aids with straws coming out their ears, BUT I bet they will be well entertained and a happy little traveler!

•Straws

•Band-Aids

•Cookie sheet and magnets

•Plastic cup(s) and small ball(s)

•Post-its

•Stickers with wax paper or empty plastic drink container

•Sock puppets

•Pipe cleaners

•Plastic Easter Eggs

•Sunglasses

•Old set of keys

•Any small toy still in package

•SNACKS, SNACKS, and more SNACKS!

The mission of Peppy Socks is to give back while providing fun, colorful, inspirational socks that make people smile.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Staycation Idea: Hit Your Local Parks

Even though we are taking vacation in October this year, we still are planning a staycation in August to help break up the summer a little. Check out how Cincinnati Cents is Hitting the Parks for her latest staycation!

Have something you want to share with our readers? Check here to see how you can share!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

7 Staycation Ideas: Travel on a Budget


When planning a staycation make sure that you treat that week just as if you were really on vacation and not at home to do your everyday tasks. Bills should be paid the week before, don’t answer the house phone, stop the mail at the post office, etc. This way you and your family will feel as if you are really on a vacation, even if you are staying home. Camp in the back yard if you have to, just make sure that they daily grind does not interfere with your staycation. Also charge your camera and make sure to take plenty of pictures and videos.

Here are a few ideas that our family will use this summer during our staycations!!

Take a Tour- Contact your local fire department, police department, post office or even a local large company to see if they offer tours of their facilities. This is a great way for your family to see the inside of local government offices or business’ and see how they run things. The added plus, most of these are FREE, but you will need to plan in advance. Most of these places only have tours certain times of the month, so you will need to call or visit their website to find out dates and times of their tours.

Night In- Plan one night of your staycation as a night in. You can make it a movie night, family cooking night, play board games, craft night, any themed night will be fun for the whole family. Just make sure that you make that night jammed packed with activities. You are staying home but you want the family to stay interested in that evenings activities, so plan for food, decorations and many activities. Craft nights can be alot of fun as well and you can use items that you already have laying around the house. We have made toothbrush bracelets, scrapbook pages, herb can planters and so much more. Be creative or even check websites to get ideas. The kids will love whatever you decide to make, they will enjoy spending time together making fun stuff!!

Field Day- Plan a day of obstacle courses, water balloon tosses, pie eating contests or anything that your whole family can do outside as if they were in a field day event. You can do as much or as little as you want. Ask your kids what type of games they want to play at your field day. Hit up your local dollar store and get all the items you need for your event. You can even invite neighbors to join in on the fun and split the cost on supplies. Make sure to have a few prizes or ribbons so the little ones can have a souvenir from the day.

Use Your Passes- Do you have passes to your local YMCA, amusement parks or zoo? Spend the day at each of them. Our local YMCA has a indoor pool but if we drive to the YMCA that is about 15 minutes away they have a huge outdoor pool with slides. We are going to take one day and go to the “beach”. We do not go to this YMCA that much so they love using the slides and being outside. Bring a lunch and plan to spend the whole day.

Eat Out- Plan a few nights to eat out at your favorite local restaurants, just as if you would if you were on vacation. I know this can get expensive, especially if you have more than 1 child. So make sure you go out to eat the nights that restaurants offer Kids Eat FREE nights. Also check out places like Restaurant.com, Groupons.com or just do a search online for B1G1 coupons for local restaurants. We are a family of 5 and without coupons or Kids Eat FREE nights, our budget would not allow us to eat out as much as we get to. So plan ahead and find the deals before your leave the house.

Catch a Movie at the Theater- As a family of 5, we do not get to see too many movies at the theater. Not just because of the cost for all of us to go but we still have one that is almost 2. So sitting still and being quiet are not things that she quite gets just yet. So we normally just rent movies. But one of our local movie theaters offers FREE family movies every Tuesday and Wednesday morning during the summer. With the theater being filled with other families that most likely have 2 year old that scream as well, I won’t feel as bad if she starts talking during the middle of the movie. Plus it is FREE, so if we have to get up and leave a little early, we are not out anything.

Tour Your City for FREE- There are so many things to do in your local city that are FREE. If you live in a smaller city and have a larger city near you, take a trip and visit all the great things they have to offer. We live near Cincinnati which has just about everything. We can stop by the Eden Park and check out the great scenery of Cincinnati. We can check out Fountain Square, The Cincinnati Art Museum, Krohns Conservatory and much more. There are a few other things that may cost a few dollars per person to get in but are so worth it. Things like the Reds Hall of Fame ($5-$8 per person), SummerFair at Coney Island ($10 adults, kids 12 and under FREE) or The Cincinnati Museum Center ($6-$12 per person). Learn about your city and site see!!

So there are a few ideas of things to do for your staycation. I can go on and on forever with ideas to make your staycation a big hit. Don’t forget to check when your local fairs and carnivals as well. They are something that the whole family can do and they are usually pretty inexpensive. The best thing to do when planning your staycation is to find things that you know your family will enjoy and have fun with. Keeping them interested the whole week and making them feel as if they are on a real vacation is the key to having a successful staycation. Whether you visit your local sports team, library, your local farm or your local parks; just have fun and spend time with your family!!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Register for 1+1 for FREE Night at Park Inn by Radisson Hotels


Register for 1+1 and be eligible to receive 15,000 bonus Gold Points® – enough for a FREE night at select Park Inn by Radisson hotels around the world.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Frugal Travel Tips: 12 Tips To Save on Food While Traveling

We have been planning our vacation for this October for a few months now and with a tight budget I have been keeping a list of ideas to help our family save while eating out on vacation. Most people spend $1000′s of dollars on vacation with nothing to show for it. There are many travel expenses that can be reduced and even eliminated with a little planning- food being one of the biggest expenses! Here are some tips we use while on vacation to save on our food budget:

  • Sign Up for Deal Alerts- A few weeks before you head out, do a little research and find local restaurants near  where you are staying. Restaurants are always sending coupons via email to entice you to stop by their place. Coupons for FREE appetizers, FREE desserts and even $$ off coupons.
  • Kids Eat FREE Nights- While you are signing up for the deal alerts above, check out if there are restaurants in the area that offer Kids Eat FREE Nights. Some locations may even let you combine a Kids eat FREE Night with a FREE appetizer coupon, making for one very inexpensive night out!
  • Make a Menu Plan- If you are like me you are already planning meals for your family each week, vacations shouldn’t be any different. Check the stores in the area where you plan to stay and see what they have on sale and plan your meal in accordance. Create a shopping list and take your coupons- this may be a bit of a hassle to have to go to the grocery while on vacation but it will help you save in the long run. Combine sales from the grocery with Kids Eat FREE Nights and restaurant coupons to make the most of your food budget.
  • Purchase a Entertainment Books or Online Restaurant Vouchers- Buying an Entertainment Book or Restaurant vouchers from places like Groupon or Living Social near your destination can help you save 50% to 70% off regular price.
  • Meal Plans at Hotels or Attraction- Check with your hotel or local attractions to see if they offer any meal deals. Some places offer FREE or discounted meals just for booking your hotel stay or purchasing attraction tickets.
  • Pack a Cooler- We plan to drive to our destination so having a cooler for our road trip is a must. But it goes further than that. We keep our cooler in the car during our entire vacation. This way we always have cold drinks and snacks available, no stopping at the closest convenience store or a fast food joint to grab a quick snack. Why pay $2-$3 for a drink when we have a stockpile of drinks that I picked up for less than a $1.
  • Continental Breakfast- Before you book that hotel, see if they offer a FREE continental breakfast. With our family of 5 we can easily spend $25-$35 eating breakfast, multiply that by 7 days and we could drop $245 just to eat breakfast.
  • Find Buffets- Although some buffet prices may not be the least expensive, it will be the best bang for your buck. All you can eat for a set price is great for those finicky eaters, giving them a whole bunch of choices, as well as for those kiddos that seem to have a bottomless pit. Our oldest daughter is fairly thin and you would think she never eats. But there are days that she out eats me and is a close competitor with my hubby and she is only 11! This is a great way to let her eat til she is completely busting at the seams!!!
  • Bring Your Own Appliances- If you are a coffee drinker bring your coffee maker. Want to have a home cooked meal without the kitchen, bring a crock-pot. There are many appliances that you can bring to help save while on vacation.
  • Ask for A Mini Fridge and an Ice Machine- Make sure when you book your hotel, you ask to get a mini fridge and make sure they have an ice machine. Keeping milk for breakfast, lunch meats for quick sandwiches or yogurts for a snack will save you quite a bit with a mini fridge. We keep the cooler full of ice and drinks, so getting a hotel with an ice machine will keep you from buying bags of ice, which can get quite expensive.
  • Ask Your Hotel for a Travel Guide- In the past we have received several travel guides that were filled with coupons and specials for area attractions and restaurants.
  • Skip The Convenience Stores & Rest Stop for Food- The food and drinks at these places are expensive and if you are driving to your destination, just pack those items that you have in your stockpile in the car. Why pay $1.50 for a Gatorade when you picked them up at a Kroger sale for .50!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

6 Tips To Flying With Kiddos

Are you flying this summer for vacation with the kiddos? Check our some great tips to flying with kids from The Coupon Challenge!

Have something you want to share with our readers? Check here to see how you can share!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Join Alamo Insiders for FREE &and Save 10% or More


Summer vacations are just around the corner, and Alamo is offering exclusive deals when you sign up to be an Alamo Insider! Join FREE today and from now on the best deals come to you. Plus, you can bank on special privileges like a 10% or more member discount on every rental, and self-service kiosks that get you on the road to vacation faster than ever. Whether your next escape is one week or months away, Alamo’s got exclusive deals for you

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

2 Unusual Frugal Spending Ways to Save Money on Family Vacations

Family vacations demand one of the biggest crunches of expenditures out of your savings. Although it may seem worth it in the end, still wouldn’t it give you an added joy to know that you can enjoy all that you want and without compromising anything, only if you make an attempt to save some bucks on this trip? How, you ask?

Well, acquaint yourself with the tips given below to know how you can make family vacations an affordable affair, instead of a strain on your planned budget:

Be a local – The easiest eating out or accommodation option on a vacation is to book rooms with a major hotel chain, and when you’re clueless about where to eat, simply land at the nearest restaurant chain you can find.  It may be news for you to know that these overpriced restaurants are often not even half-as-good as the locally owned hotels.

Not only do you save a lot by eating at these locally-operated hotels but you also get to know so much about the place and get the wholesome feel of the authentic culture of the place you’re visiting.

To find the local bed and breakfasts, and hotels along with major attractions of the town, you should check out the Chamber of Commerce website of the place you plan to visit.

Try Out Your Automobile Club Membership for Some Discounts – Use your AAA to get more than just hotel discounts. Make use of your membership for breaks on tickets to major attractions, rental cars, and a lot more. Drop by at the AAA office and ask them what ll deals they have on offer for your chosen destination. Once you’re there, do pick up a few good quality maps, all for free.

In case your state’s automobile association provides a magazine, you may find some advertised specials and coupons in their classifieds section.

With the economy of the country having survived through a real bad hit, it’s our responsibility as American citizen to keep a check on our spending ways. And what better way to adapt to a healthy financial lifestyle than take on the frugal living ideas to live a debt-free life. Check your annual free credit reports every year and make sure you stand in a bright financial light.

Guest Post: Brenda Lyttle believes in finding ways to enjoy frugal living and recommends that you stay within your means and keep a check on your free credit reports online.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Join Your Favorites- HGTV, Food Network & Travel Channel

The people who bring you HGTV, Food Network, and Travel Channel invite you to join an exclusive online community where you can share your opinions, thoughts, and ideas about topics related to home, food, travel and more!

Under One Roof is your opportunity to tell them about your experiences in home improvement, decorating, cooking, shopping, entertaining, traveling, vacations, and much more. Your opinions will help shape plans for some of your favorite networks.

Plus, you earn points for rewards by participating in surveys and discussion forums. Once you’ve qualified and confirmed your membership in the community, you will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win one of three $250 amazon.com electronic giftcards. Be sure to read all terms and conditions before committing to any membership.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Travel Deal Round-up 7/20

This weeks travel round up is full of awesome ways to save on hotels. Don’t overlook the “Other Travel Offers” for travel-related freebies and news.

HOTEL DISCOUNTS

Hotels.com – Must travel by Sept. 5th (select hotels)*
Free $25 Gas Card- Stay 2+ Nights
Free Kindle – Stay 3+ Nights ($450 minimum)
Rebate up to $100 (depends on length of stay)

Starwood – Free $40 Gas Card with 2+ Nights

Orbitz.com - Save 10% off a hotel stay of 1+ night
Coupon Code: DEALPRO10 (not valid at all hotels)

$50 TheHotelCard.com Credit For $20 (we’ve used this and love it!)

$100 Florida Hotel Card For $49- Eversave

$100 Travelocity Gift Card For $50 – Plum District

OTHER TRAVEL OFFERS

Sign up for the Travel Zoo newsletter to stay in the know. Receive 1 email a week with the Top 20 travel deals. We’ve been signed up for years and have purchased many deals.

Did you hear Groupon and Expedia have partnered up to offer hot travel deals? Head over and check out over 30 travel deals. Not too may places will offer 4 nights in Costa Rica for $280.

Request Free Travel Guides (mail or download)

Join Wazzamba and earn travel related prizes.

Don’t forget about the awesome OfficeMax Hotel deal we posted yesterday.

Thanks theDealyo!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

FREEbie- Disney Parks Vacation Planner

Planning a trip to Disney this summer? Well before you start, request your FREE Disney Park Vacation Planning DVD! Your FREE DVD will include:

  • A complete tour of the 4 Theme Parks, 2 Water Parks and over 20 Resort hotels at the Walt Disney World® Resort in Florida
  • A tour of the Disneyland® Resort in California, including 2 enchanting Theme Parks and 3 Resort hotels
  • Affordable ways to play and stay during your Disney vacation
  • Plus much more, including pocket-sized planning guides, planning tips, and information on special events
This offer is only available to U.S. and Canadian households. One per household.

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

FREEbie- Travel Guides or Planning Kits


If you are going on vacation this summer or if you are looking for a new place to visit, request a FREE travel guide and see what they have to offer. I love getting travel guides, it helps us find new places to visit while on vacation and sometimes they offer specials that has saved us money on dining out, special events and even hotel stays! You can request your FREE travel brochures, maps or travel planning kits!
Free Travel Guides and Brochures – Browse destinations, pick travel guides that you’d like, receive guides Free by mail or download. Click Here

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money

Staycation Idea: Kid Friendly Garden Frugal Style

Here is Staycation Idea 5- Kid Friendly Garden Frugal Style, thanks to Stretching Your Budget!

Spring is almost here! So, I thought it would be a great time to start planting a garden! Unfortunately it’s not always easy to get the kids involved on such a large project. So, I’ve got the perfect solution for both!
If you’re like me, you love to use Organic products without paying the steep price. My kids absolutely love yogurt and we can usually get it for Free at the grocery store after using coupons! So we have a ton of these little yogurt cups. I was trying to think of what I could use them for instead of throwing them away. Then the other day we got the Danonino Yogurt that had the awesome idea of planting seeds in them! They even come with a little pack of seeds! Even if you don’t have this specific yogurt you can still to this project!

Supplies:

- Clean, empty yogurt cups
- Potting soil
- Seeds ( I would recommend herbs or something that will grow well inside)
- Water
- Kids that don’t mind getting their hands a little dirty!

Directions:

- Fill the container ¾ of the way full with soil
- Place the seed on top and then smooth over with more soil just until you can’t see the seed
- Pour a little water in
- Wait for it to grow!

This is super cheap and easy! Kids love being able to get involved and get their hands a little dirty. Plus, they actually get to watch it grow. Then when it’s ready you get to have fresh organic herbs to use in your favorite dishes! My kids are so excited about theirs!

This post may contain a link from a sponsor/affiliate of Just Trying To Save Money. Please see my Disclosure Policy

Looking for more coupons? Check our Coupon Database for the latest coupons!

Just Trying To Save Money