How to Have a Fun Staycation

Between our busy schedules, tight budgets, and long list of house projects, we’re masters at staycations.

Never heard of a staycation?  A staycation is when you take a vacation from your work, but you don’t leave town.  Or if you do, you stay within a two hour radius.  A staycation gives you a much needed time to relax without spending a lot of money on hotels, food, and tourist attractions.

The key to having a fun staycation is to purposefully avoid anything that involves work.  You should not be staining a deck, holding a garage sale, or mowing the lawn on your staycation. 

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Instead, here are some ideas for fun and frugal staycations.
Find free passes to your local tourist attractions. Check to see if your local library offers free passes to area attractions.  Many merchants also offer discount coupons.  It can be a lot of fun to learn about things that are in your own backyard.

Do touristy stuff during the week. Visit tourist attractions and state parks during the week when they are less crowded.  You’ll enjoy the sites much more when things aren’t as busy. 

Check out your local newspaper for activities you can do.  Many cities offer free live music and arts events during the summer, so put those on your to-do list.

Splurge on food.  You’re on vacation – so be sure to eat out at least a couple of times.  You can save a ton of money using gift certificates purchased from or you can sign-up for coupons from your favorite restaurants.  When you do cook from home, splurge a little – a fancy meal at home is still going to be a lot less expensive than one at a resort restaurant.

Spend time at the beach or pool.  Soaking up that Vitamin D and splashing in the warm water can really do wonders for your mood.

Camp in your backyard or at a nearby campground.  Camping is a fun, inexpensive way to connect with your family.  Just don’t forget the s’mores!

Take lots of photos.  Since you won’t be buying any souvenirs, use your camera to capture happy memories of your staycation.   With the money you save on your staycation, you’ll be able to create photo books and gifts.

Whether you’re on the road or staying at home for your vacation, remember to enjoy yourself, recharge those batteries, and connect with your loved ones.

It’s not how much money you spend, it’s how you spend your time!

About Christina Brown

Christina is a wife and mother dedicated to figuring out how to live a simpler, happier life on a budget.


  1. says

    also i don't think people realize how good a stay-cation is for their local community. The tourist areas are infamous for getting all your vacation dollars, when you stay home you are pumping more money back into the businesses of your friends and neighbors and helping keep your own area alive and prosperous.

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