Camping on a Budget

Posted on July 20th, 2015 by Discount Debbie

Summer is here and you’re looking for things to do with your family that won’t break the bank.  Taking the time to get away from work, school and everyday obligations, is hard enough, but then  thinking of the money it is going to cost to get away makes it even harder.

Camping is a great way to get away from everything as well as allowing you to really enjoy your time together and not be distracted by everyday life, including your wallet. Planning and preparation are key to making it a money-saving success.



Camping on a Budget


Create a Checklist

Lists are your best friend! Create a camping checklist before you start packing to make sure that you don’t forget anything and have to pay exorbitant prices from the campground to get it.

Purchase Pre-Owned or Slightly Used Gear
Check out local garage/yard sales, websites such as Craigslist, or even find local “online garage sale” groups on Facebook.

Use Household Items
There is no need to purchase eating utensils, plates, pots, pans, when you already have those things in your kitchen cabinets.

Create a Camping Tote
Have a tote that is used year to year especially for camping trips.  Instead of purchasing temporary items to cover everything you will need, purchase items that will last and can be used year to year.

Prep your Food
Prepare your menu plan just as you normally would, and prepare anything you need to in advance.  Instant Oatmeal packets, muffins and granola are great protein packed breakfast ideas that cost very little.

Pick a camping location that has things to do.  This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to camp in a resort, but camp close to water or a state park so you have built in entertainment that won’t cost additional money.

A couple other tips to remember. Keep your wood pile covered with a tarp to keep it from getting wet or damp from a pop-up storm.  Also, try to set up camp in the shade as much as possible to avoid the heat and and having to replenish the ice in your cooler as frequently.


Camping: The Ultimate Cheap Vacation

Posted on May 22nd, 2012 by Discount Debbie

Do you love camping? There seems to be a large group of people who absolutely love it. This girl isn’t one of them, but my husband is obsessed with it. I don’t complain either, because you can’t find a cheaper activity if you do it right. Even if you do it wrong, you’ll spend less on camping than a traditional stay at a hotel with activities. Here are some perks for camping just in case you were looking for a reason to go.

1. You save money on lodging. This is a given since you’ll be staying in a tent, but camping is seriously cheap. We live right by Glacier National Park in Montana. They have prime camping spots there and for around $10 a night. Most national parks are going to be very inexpensive and you can usually even reserve spots for busy seasons.

2. You save money on food. When you vacation, I bet most of your budget is spent on food. With camping your food bill will be a fraction of the cost. And don’t worry, you don’t just have to do things like cold sandwiches and smores (although I am not hating on them). The possibilities are endless! We love to make what we call “poor man meals” when we go camping. You throw raw chicken or beef or any meat you want into a “pack” of aluminum foil with our favorite veggies and potatoes then season them. We make these before we leave and leave them on ice and just throw them on the campsite grill when we get there. You can eat them straight out of the foil and they are delish! We’ve even learned to “grill” fruit. We soak stawberries and pound cake in melted butter and grill it until it’s toasty. Throw some whipped cream over it and it’s amazing!

3. You save money on activities. Usually campsites are in National Parks or other places that have things to do in them. We go camping right next to a lake that has a beach. The kids LOVE it. They play in the water all day. You don’t have to pay for entertainment once you get where you are going. Maybe a few bucks here and there, but nothing like other vacations.


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