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This summer we decided to take a summer road trip. We recently made a permanent change of station near Dallas, TX for a special assignment working with another government agency. There is so much to do around here!
We were excited that our summer vacation budget would get a little rest and we could save up for our big trip next year. Still, we would need some funding. This past spring our neighborhood had a huge garage sale. I decided the money from it would be our road trip funds. That is how I convinced my husband and girls to participate. Go Mom!
There are many ways to save on your road trip. Below I’ve provided you tips to save on your vehicle expenses, your lodging, and of course the activities that you’ll do along the way. Feel free to add your tips so we call can share!
There are so many ways to save for military families we shouldn’t be paying full price for anything on our road trips. All it takes is a little prior proper planning and our road trip will be set with perfect performance!
What creative ways have you earned money for a vacation?
What tips do you have to save at the pump?
Where do you find discounts for lodging or activities?
When I was active duty, we always looked for lodging on bases wherever we traveled. It was always nice, always safe, and always cheap--can't go wrong there! Since I separated, here are a few more ways we've come up with to save money on travel (although, somehow it always ends up costing more than I thought by the time we get home!):
1. Lodging: Armed Forces Vacation Club is tough to beat...if you can find space-A rentals, you can get luxury accommodations for $350/week in some very nice places. Also, if you need to stay at a regular hotel, check out their vacation deals page for a discount code for all Wyndham hotel chains. It will save you 20% and keep you from having to pay in advance.
2. Food: Before hitting the road, pack a cooler with lunch meat, cheese, fruit cups, etc. Any meal you can eat out of the cooler instead of at a restaurant will be worth it. The kids always loved picnics at the roadside rest stops too. Also, consider making your lodging reservations include a kitchen, kitchenette, or at least a fridge/microwave. We've saved tons on food with an AFVClub condo with a full kitchen just by making a grocery list, heading to the store, then cooking meals in the condo most of the week!
3. Activities: If you can stand firm and are willing to give up a little time, consider a timeshare presentation. One recent one got us a half-day dune buggy rental and four passes to the "Out of Africa Wild Animal Park" near Sedona for $90. That was 90 minutes well spent!
THANK YOU for the comment - great information!
I am SO SORRY for your experience. I cannot even imagine. With that said, I will forward this. I had a similar experience with a different rental agency and I took it all the way to the top with the said business. I did let USAA know how they handled it.
Additionally, I think they'll need information to verify who you are, the reservation, etc. in order to move forward. Is there a way you would be able to take the time to talk with a member services representative? I believe it would be beneficial to "enact change" that they heard your story too. If so, please see what they can do for you by calling 210-531-USAA (8722)or 800-531-USAA.
Chuck, I ran your comment up the flag pole and USAA tried to reach out to you however, here in the forums your user name is not tied to your member information. Can you please click here to provide us with additional detail and your member information. You can also reach a service specialist at 1-800-531-8722. That way they can try to get this addressed. Thank you!
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