"Oh yeah? We'll then I'm going."
That's what I said to my yoga instructor Jesi when she told me Hawaii tickets were at an all time low. (Around $300! Round trip!)
Let me be the first to say, planning a vacation is hard. After trying to get in touch with multiple travel agents and having no luck, I relied solely on google and Pinterest for this one. What on earth did we do before the World Wide Web?!
After researching plane tickets, We realized we would have to leave in about a week to snag the great deal. That's the first tip of traveling on a budget: 1.) BE FLEXIBLE. I understand this is hard for so many with work and school, but being able to alter your schedule helps tremendously on airfare. They say to book the cheapest airfare do so on a Tuesday, the third week of the month, three weeks before you fly, when there's a full moon and right after you've had a haircut-- (ok, I'm kidding) but I've never found that to be consistent. Normally we would try to book as early as possible, but in this case it was the last minute deal that sold us. So, keep your eyes out. There's not a set time when you'll find a great deal.
Travel tip number 2.) DON'T BE A PRINCESS. Yes, I understand that camping is not for everyone. But, if you are wanting to do an elaborate vacation on a shoestring budget, an amazing resort is probably not in your stars. (At least, not in ours.) Some beaches of Hawaii have tiny cabins you can rent for $40/night if you aren't into tent camping. We knew we wanted to camp from the start, so we looked at a few options on the camp Honolulu website which has all the information you could possibly want. Camping in Hawaii is very, very cheap. (Much cheaper than many of the KOAs we've been to.) Many of them enforce a three day stay limit, so we had to find one that allowed for five day camping. We chose Kualoa B regional park. It's adjacent to the Hawaiian fishponds, and has a beautiful view of Chinaman's Hat. We are told the fishing there is quite good. (I'll have a review of the campsite posted next week after up our arrival.) and the best part? It costs less than $11/day.
Anytime I hear a review of Hawaii, the first thing people say is, "it's beautiful," the second thing people say is, "it's crazy expensive!" Knowing this ahead of time, we've prepared for the shock of expensive food, and how to avoid some of it. Having a picky eater for a two year old, paying 20$ for a hamburger she will decide not to eat isn't on my "to-do" list while there. So, this week I've prepared foods I know she will eat and packed with us. (Oatmeal, noodles, trail mix, crackers, peanut butter-- all things I can easily pack in my pack and cook on Logan's camp stove.) So, we should be able to eat two meals a day in, and splurge on dinners out for fresh local seafood. That leads me to travel tip 3.) BE PREPARED.
I'll keep you posted on how well we have prepared for this trip :-) We leave day after tomorrow, and there's still so much to do! I'm hoping to share with you our plans, our gear (maybe I can get Logan to write that one!) what it's like traveling with a toddler, and of course tons of photos with it all. Prayers for safe travel are greatly appreciated!