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How to Eat on a Budget on a Roadtrip or Vacation

Updated on August 16, 2011

Eating on a Family Budget on Vacation

Eating out for family vacation does not always mean that you have to eat a lot of fast food or junk food. All you really need is a few tools and good ideas.

Here are some ideas for the road:

  • Pack some finger sandwiches. Easy to grab and eat for everyone with less mess.
  • Cut up some fresh, bite sized fruit and place into a container.
  • Freeze some drinks such as bottle water and fruit juices to use as ice packs in the cooler
  • Prepare fresh cut veggies in a plastic baggie with a container for dipping sauce.
  • In several plastic containers, prepare some veggies to make salad such as lettuce, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes and mixed salad greens. Add grilled chicken for the meat lovers. The sauce can be put in another container.
  • Boiled eggs also make good road trip snacks.
  • Pasta salad tossed with a dressing or vinaigrette can be made as well. Add shreds of different veggies and chicken if desired.

In the hotel room:

  • Instead of going out to eat, perhaps you can buy dinner from the grocery store. Almost very grocery store has a deli where they sell fresh prepared food such as rotisserie chicken, salads, sandwiches, and soups.
  • Check the freezer aisle for any healthy meals that you can microwave.
  • Instant cup noodles, canned soup, or any instant food can make easy family meals.
  • Some hotel rooms offer refrigerators so use them to your advantage. Buy packs of drinks from grocery stores versus buying individual drinks from gas stations. If you have a lot of bottles, you can even buy the larger, economical bottles instead of the more expensive, individual drinks.
  • Bring your ice chest with you in the car filled with ice packs and a few drinks. This can be good to place any leftover food from restaurants or road trip food.
  • Take advantage of free breakfast that your hotel offers. Wake up early just to pick up food you can eat when everybody wakes up. Fresh fruit and small boxes of cereal are great for snacks on the go.

Other tips:

  • Check discount sites for specials on foods.
  • Bring your grocery coupons to go shopping


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    • Esmeowl12 profile image

      Cindy A. Johnson 6 years ago from Sevierville, TN

      These are all great ideas. I do them all. Voted up and useful.