Author Topic: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?  (Read 6147 times)

EconDiva

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2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« on: March 06, 2014, 07:50:28 AM »
I live in Chicago and I'm frikkin dying over here. I moved here two years ago from the south and this winter has been brutal. Just the worst.

I'm starting a new job soon and am off for two weeks right now. I feel like I should take a short trip to MIA...I don't know when is the next time I'll have two weeks off. It would be soooo awesome to get a short break from this scenery, and to clear my mind before starting the next job. Also my depression is really really bad right now and I'm hoping some sun would help :(

My issue is budget...I have $700 total to spend. I'm thinking $300 for flight, $300 for hotel, and $100 for food/going out. I would mainly just chill on the beach. With this budget I can only do like 2 1/2 days. Does this seem not worth even doing for the amount I'd be spending? Also, I can't find any flights that cheap for the weekend. I'd have to do a trip where I leave on a Monday and come back on a Wed night :/

Paulie

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2014, 08:03:11 AM »
But the advantage of having two weeks off is that you can go on a Monday and return on a Wednesday right? Why would that be a problem?

If you really think that your health will benefit of this, maybe it's worth the money (assuming that you're not spending your last $700 on it). If it enables you to get off to a good start in your new job I would seriously consider doing it. Altough, have you thought of cheaper options as well? Maybe light therapy?

GuitarStv

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2014, 08:03:26 AM »
Waste of money.  Waste of resources.  Rushed trip may equate to more stress than relaxation.  Beaches are for summer.  Nut up and learn to enjoy the cold.



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EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2014, 08:15:14 AM »
But the advantage of having two weeks off is that you can go on a Monday and return on a Wednesday right? Why would that be a problem?

If you really think that your health will benefit of this, maybe it's worth the money (assuming that you're not spending your last $700 on it). If it enables you to get off to a good start in your new job I would seriously consider doing it. Altough, have you thought of cheaper options as well? Maybe light therapy?

Not a problem, just preferred it be the weekend. But that's not a big deal really.

I got paid for the vacation days I didn't take on the last job, so the money would be coming out of those extra funds. Once I start the new job, a vacation/time off will be unlikely for a while since I'll be new.

Light therapy is a good idea and I will look into that. Just feeling in need of a 'pick me up' and I feel like this is the perfect opportunity to get away. Just trying to weigh if it's too much of a 'splurge' or not....

EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2014, 08:16:20 AM »
Waste of money.  Waste of resources.  Rushed trip may equate to more stress than relaxation.  Beaches are for summer.  Nut up and learn to enjoy the cold.



  - A Canadian

I can handle a face punch....

Rural

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2014, 08:31:26 AM »
I live in Chicago and I'm frikkin dying over here. I moved here two years ago from the south and this winter has been brutal. Just the worst.

I'm starting a new job soon and am off for two weeks right now. I feel like I should take a short trip to MIA...I don't know when is the next time I'll have two weeks off. It would be soooo awesome to get a short break from this scenery, and to clear my mind before starting the next job. Also my depression is really really bad right now and I'm hoping some sun would help :(

My issue is budget...I have $700 total to spend. I'm thinking $300 for flight, $300 for hotel, and $100 for food/going out. I would mainly just chill on the beach. With this budget I can only do like 2 1/2 days. Does this seem not worth even doing for the amount I'd be spending? Also, I can't find any flights that cheap for the weekend. I'd have to do a trip where I leave on a Monday and come back on a Wed night :/

If you own a car, drive. Then camp --  a cheap tent will do for a few days and cost much less than a night in a hotel. Stay in state parks -- make reservations online so you're not stuck paying more for a KOA. The weather is getting warm enough down south now that you can get by with an airbed, blanket and comforter, so you don't have to have a sleeping bag, and you can get as far south as the Birmingham area in an easy single day from Chicago on I-65. As a bonus, you'll start seeing trees leafing out as you go.

 Hang on to enough extra from your savings to buy a night in a motel (not hotel) if the forecast calls for temps below freezing. Take a sturdy pot, from the thrift store if neccessary; state park campsites generally have grills. They tend to be filthy, but if you're cooking in a pot and your food doesn't touch it, why should you care? You can get charcoal for the grill at the same grocery store you'll go to for the food. Or just eat peanut butter sandwiches and some grocery deli food if you don't want to cook. For $700, you can easily spend a week and a half. Or I could, anyway.

ShortInSeattle

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2014, 08:44:58 AM »
I'm probably an outlier, but I take 3 and 4 day trips regularly. I did 9 of them last year.

I find that whenever there is a flight involved 4 days is a healthy minimum. The first day you arrive, two days to play, and one day to go home.

Short trips can be great, but 2.5 sounds too short to me. Can you find cheaper accommodations and extend it to 3 or 4?

EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2014, 08:54:01 AM »
I'm probably an outlier, but I take 3 and 4 day trips regularly. I did 9 of them last year.

I find that whenever there is a flight involved 4 days is a healthy minimum. The first day you arrive, two days to play, and one day to go home.

Short trips can be great, but 2.5 sounds too short to me. Can you find cheaper accommodations and extend it to 3 or 4?

I'm sure that I could. But my big risk factors here are that I plan on bidding on the hotel fare. So it's a gamble as to how much I'll actually save. But if I go during the week I'm not too worried about it and am pretty sure the savings will be high.

I could do a Wed-Sat maybe. That way I'd still depart on a cheap day (Wed) and have a weekend day in there.

I guess one thing I'm really interested in hearing is simply if other people would do it or consider it too non mustachian. 

plantingourpennies

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2014, 09:03:54 AM »
Short trips can be great, but 2.5 sounds too short to me. Can you find cheaper accommodations and extend it to 3 or 4?

For cheaper accommodations, you might want to see if there is any space at the Oleta River State Park cabins.  I think they run ~$50/night and are within the state park which has mangroves, etc - but the state park is also walking distance to the beach at Sunny Isles, which has a nice pier and is on the quieter side.   From Sunny Isles, you can either catch the buses that run up/down the beach, or walk down past nudie beach at Haulover, hike over a bridge and hook up with the Deco Bike stations that go as far north as Bal Harbour.    That might be able to stretch your accommodation budget to 4-5 nights?  Even longer if you can convince a friend to stay in the cabins with you (since most of them sleep several people easily) and split the cost. 

greaper007

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2014, 09:07:53 AM »
For $700 you could jack the heat up to 85 in your house all weekend.  Walk around in a bikini and drink mojitos in front of the tv all day long.  That would probably only be like $50 extra.

I used to do weekend trips all the time, but I had free airfare so it didn't really count.   $700 sounds brutal to me, but I have a warped sense of vacation prices after growing up in an airline employee family.

EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2014, 09:38:49 AM »
For $700 you could jack the heat up to 85 in your house all weekend.  Walk around in a bikini and drink mojitos in front of the tv all day long.  That would probably only be like $50 extra.

I used to do weekend trips all the time, but I had free airfare so it didn't really count.   $700 sounds brutal to me, but I have a warped sense of vacation prices after growing up in an airline employee family.

Why didn't I think of that before? :P

Yeah, $700 does seem high but can you suggest any ways of getting say a three day trip there for me below maybe $500?

RootofGood

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2014, 10:10:32 AM »
Could you stretch it to a whole week with an airbnb or craiglist rental (and/or couchsurf) for $250-300?  I might say it would be worth it in that case.  Just get something near the beach and take the bus or walk down to the water. 

Otherwise I would say hell to the no - flying halfway across the country for 2.5 days (1.5-2 days ?? after the flights and airport shuttle/car rental, etc dance). That's just my preference though.

Mister Fancypants

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2014, 10:40:32 AM »
Unless its business related I don't get on a plane for less than 2 weeks, but that's just me :)

As far as if you want an opinion if spending $700 on a 2 1/2 day vacation is Mustachian or not, the answer is 100% not, that being said who cares.... if you can afford it and want to waste your money to go somewhere warm go for it.

However you asked on this forum because you are doubting whether you think itís a good idea and wanted some reassurance, this was probably not the best place to come for that :)

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EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2014, 11:04:44 AM »
Unless its business related I don't get on a plane for less than 2 weeks, but that's just me :)

As far as if you want an opinion if spending $700 on a 2 1/2 day vacation is Mustachian or not, the answer is 100% not, that being said who cares.... if you can afford it and want to waste your money to go somewhere warm go for it.

However you asked on this forum because you are doubting whether you think itís a good idea and wanted some reassurance, this was probably not the best place to come for that :)

-Mister FancyPants

Yeah, after thinking it through I dont think I'm gonna go. That's why I came here, to get some sense talked into me. The money would be much better spent on some extra therapy sessions and perhaps another depression med at this point.

AlanStache

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2014, 11:23:47 AM »
Quote
For $700 you could jack the heat up to 85 in your house all weekend.  Walk around in a bikini and drink mojitos in front of the tv all day long.  That would probably only be like $50 extra.
!!!  love it!!!  hell make it a party, get a kiddy pool, a big bag of sand and rent a tanning bed.

I have done short trips, they are great IF you land early and fly out late and are not personally paying all the airfare-airfare is what kills these wrt budget.  Re MIA the airport is no where near South Beach, cab would run like 50-80 guessing or a bus would take well over an hour.  South Beach is expensive.  If you know a different place to go that is cheap-great.  I think your budget is unrealistically low.

lizzzi

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2014, 11:27:08 AM »
Use some of the money for a mini-staycation in Chicago. How about a morning at a day spa? A non-Mustachian splurge, but not nearly as much as what sounds to me like a too-expensive. too-rushed, potentially-stressed vacay to the South.

EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #16 on: March 06, 2014, 11:39:04 AM »
Use some of the money for a mini-staycation in Chicago. How about a morning at a day spa? A non-Mustachian splurge, but not nearly as much as what sounds to me like a too-expensive. too-rushed, potentially-stressed vacay to the South.

Well considered response; I was looking into this actually as an alternative to a trip. You're right; would be less money. Plus should give me some good stress relief in the meantime.

4alpacas

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2014, 11:44:15 AM »
Unless its business related I don't get on a plane for less than 2 weeks, but that's just me :)

As far as if you want an opinion if spending $700 on a 2 1/2 day vacation is Mustachian or not, the answer is 100% not, that being said who cares.... if you can afford it and want to waste your money to go somewhere warm go for it.

However you asked on this forum because you are doubting whether you think itís a good idea and wanted some reassurance, this was probably not the best place to come for that :)

-Mister FancyPants

Yeah, after thinking it through I dont think I'm gonna go. That's why I came here, to get some sense talked into me. The money would be much better spent on some extra therapy sessions and perhaps another depression med at this point.

Maybe use part of the money to do something that feels wasteful.  My big indulgence (SO unmustachian) is spa treatments.  I usually book a massage at a really nice spa....and then I hang out in the steam room, use the awesome showers with the provided spa products, drink the cucumber water. 

windawake

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2014, 11:52:53 AM »
I do travel hacking: http://chrisguillebeau.com/3x5/beginners-guide-to-travel-hacking/

You open credit cards with high mileage bonuses. Then you use those to fly for very, very cheap. I wouldn't fly without having these almost free flights, especially on an unplanned trip. It's awesome.

EconDiva

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Re: 2 1/2 day trip...worth it or a waste of money?
« Reply #19 on: March 06, 2014, 12:01:39 PM »
Unless its business related I don't get on a plane for less than 2 weeks, but that's just me :)

As far as if you want an opinion if spending $700 on a 2 1/2 day vacation is Mustachian or not, the answer is 100% not, that being said who cares.... if you can afford it and want to waste your money to go somewhere warm go for it.

However you asked on this forum because you are doubting whether you think itís a good idea and wanted some reassurance, this was probably not the best place to come for that :)

-Mister FancyPants

Yeah, after thinking it through I dont think I'm gonna go. That's why I came here, to get some sense talked into me. The money would be much better spent on some extra therapy sessions and perhaps another depression med at this point.

Maybe use part of the money to do something that feels wasteful.  My big indulgence (SO unmustachian) is spa treatments.  I usually book a massage at a really nice spa....and then I hang out in the steam room, use the awesome showers with the provided spa products, drink the cucumber water.

Agreed. I'm sure most Mustachians participate in some sort of non mustachian activity from time to time. I love spas and always feel so good after a nice massage. But I usually only go once a year. So I'm going to book something soon.