A Love For Exploration
I have my parents to thank for instilling in me a love for exploration and adventure through travel. We traveled as a family often, visiting extended family, historical sites, U.S. National Parks, and more. My parents and our trips taught me the importance of travel flexibility, patience, and affordability. It was certainly not easy for all of us to travel as a family of seven, but amazingly, my parents were able to make it work! They kept their sanity, budget, and the overall peace through pretty creative and resourceful means, such as taking turns driving through the night while all of us kids slept and building a makeshift TV stand for a 9” TV/VCR combo that plugged directly into the van. They found restaurants where kids ate free and picked up coupon books for discounted hotel rooms. As you would expect, we had our ups and downs traveling as a family of seven, but I am tremendously grateful for the memories.
I now share my experiences and love of travel with Brian. He and I enjoy exploring new places and eating new foods. We seek adventures off the beaten path and love to learn about the local culture. Brian and I tend to road trip or fly budget airlines, such as Spirit or Frontier. We have never had a bad experience with these airlines, though we are well aware of their terrible reputation. Budget airlines are not for everybody, but they work for us! We are members of various rewards programs, which allow for us to book discounted hotel rates, car rentals, and even flights. Budget travel takes time and energy to plan, but we enjoy the travel planning process and would much rather know the ins and outs of our itinerary than to have someone else do it for us. This is only a personal preference – I know there are many others who would gladly have someone else take care of plans for them! We will go into more detail of how we travel in a future post, but for now, we would like to share our tentative travel plans!
Away We Go
Every once in a while, Brian and I like to re-create childhood trips. For 2018, we decided to explore the western part of the U.S. to recreate a family trip I had nearly 20 years ago! In 2000, after hearing Clark Howard announce a special $79 round trip flight to Salt Lake City, Utah, my parents decided to round all of us up for a whirlwind journey through 7 states. We flew into Utah and drove around the surrounding states, finding ourselves in Yellowstone National Park, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, and Grand Canyon National Park. It was a 10-day blur of energy, adventure, and family craziness. To this day, my siblings and I wish we could re-do this trip, as we are now older and would appreciate the experience even more. As it turns out, Brian has not yet traveled to this part of the country, and so we decided to take on this adventure together. We are still working out the details, but we plan to trek through at least a couple of the National Parks.
This won’t be our only trip of the year as we plan to hit some other west coast hot spots, such as San Francisco and Portland, as well as any other destinations we find ourselves in. We tend to travel when and where we can find deals! Wherever we are, we will be sure to keep you posted!