Long Weekend Beach Trip – Budget Specifics

In my last post, I talked about why we decided to do this weekend trip to the beach. It was designed specifically to be a vacation with hubby’s parents & his brothers’ families. We began planning the trip during the summer and knew that it would not be the only vacation that we took for the year. Our getaway budget was going to have to reflect that as well.

After some friendly debate, we settled on our Getaway Budget. We decided on $550 for the 4 day trip. (I wanted $500 and he wanted $600 we settled in the middle). The $550 is for the entire trip including hotel and gas.

Our destination (Panama City Beach) had been decided for us so I narrowed down our options for hotels and had rates for three hotels (that we have already seen in person so we know for sure what we are getting) for comparison. I can’t say it enough with a “cheap” hotel it is important to know what you are getting. All three of the hotels had the same basic room options, they all had a pool and they were all beachfront. They are all older hotels (that is usually where the lower prices come in), they are clean and well maintained. We didn’t have any huge preference for one over the other so we went with the cheapest. We didn’t need a kitchen for this trip so we got a Beach front Queen Nonsmoking Room. It had 2 queen beds & a great view of the beach from the private balcony.

Picture of the room  – We had already invaded the room by the time I took pictures so it doesn’t look as good as when we arrived. 
Picture of the room

Picture of one of the beds
Picture of one of the beds

The view from the balcony and what I go to the beach for.
View from balcony

A sunset view from the balcony
Sunset view

This was the bonus view we got from the front door of our room.
Bonus view

We stayed Thursday to Sunday. Thursday night was $62, Friday and Saturday nights were both $71 a night. The total after taxes for the weekend was $229.71.

Our gas costs were pretty minimal and could have been mostly taken care of out our regular weekly gas budget. We topped off the tank for $30 about 45 miles into the trip, put in $50 at the beach and then topped off again for $20 on the way home. So $100 in gas for the weekend. (Gas ranged from $3.18 – $3.25 a gallon while we were on the trip).

Eating and other spending took up the rest of the budgeted money. I’m not great about writing down all the specifics but we only used cash. We spent $15 on snacks to take with us, $12 for lunch on the way, $20 for fast food Thursday night, $40 for lunch (at a nice restaurant) on Friday, $20 for supper (chipped in with family for a big meal) Friday night, $15 for breakfast (at our favorite place) on Saturday, $30 for supper (fresh shrimp, corn & potatoes) on Saturday night & $40 for lunch (Five Guys and Fries) on the way out of town on Sunday. We also spent $15 at Target on a t-shirt for hubby, batteries for headphones & hubby’s favorite trail mix. We spent $207 during the trip and spent another $12 for pizza (2 Little Caesars Hot n Ready Pizzas) so I didn’t have to cook once we got home. We spent $219 (most of the dollar amounts are estimated and we did come home with a couple of dollars and a couple of pocketfuls of change) of the $220 budgeted for the trip.

We didn’t do anything on the trip beyond hanging out at the beach, the pool and visiting with family. Hubby’s birthday was Saturday night and we celebrated with football games & free fireworks.

Budget $550

Hotel $230

Gas $100

Food $219

We stayed within budget and have a couple of dollars left to start funding our next trip. I am hoping that our next getaway will be a romantic getaway for hubby and I. We’ll start saving for it now but I have no idea when it will happen.

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