It’s no secret that I love a good racecation. I plan trips around races that I want to run or find races in places that the Mr. and I want to travel to. People are always surprised that we are able to go to so many places and do it as often as we do, but there’s some strategy to planning a racecation on a budget.
This post is devoted to choosing the best value for racecation lodging. Lodging is typically one of the most expensive components to planning a racecation, so these tips outline all that you need to plan the perfect trip without breaking the bank.
I utilize all these strategies when I plan a tip or determine which place is the best bang for our buck. My hope is that these tips will help you travel anywhere you want to go and give you options.
Stay with Friends or Family. One of the most expensive aspects to traveling in general is lodging. It becomes harder and harder to keep in touch and see extended family and friends, so visiting them for a racecation is the best of both worlds. You get to catch up with old friends and race in their city. I will be racing in Knoxville in April and staying with my sorority big sister because I have been trying to plan a trip to see her, but by running the Knoxville Half Marathon I get to do both. The Mr. and I may even be traveling to Salt Lake City later this fall to do the exact same thing, because I didn’t get to race there when we visited last.
Partner Hotels. Most races will include information on partner hotels offering discounted rates if you mention that you are there for the race or use the race code when booking online. Sometimes these rates are heavily discounted, but a lot of times you can find a hotel close to the race or these partner hotels for cheaper than the race negotiated rate. Be sure to do your research though, because on occasion I have seen where a partner hotel will offer a complimentary breakfast or race day shuttle for runners. Weigh your options and evaluate and more importantly do your research. When in doubt, call the hotel or the race organization to be sure you know what you are paying for.
Travel with Friends. Not only do you get to run an amazing race with your friends, but you also save money by splitting the hotel cost. It can also be fun to plan a girls getaway trip over a racecation and even invite non-runner friends along. No one will pass up a trip to a fun location with people they care about, even if there is a race involved. I think some ideal locations would be the beach, wine country and the mountains.
Quick Trips. Look for races in places that can be turned into quick trips so the cost of lodging is less. There are a lot of places the Mr. and I want to visit within driving distance, but the hotel cost is often too high for our budget to stay multiple nights or we know we don’t want to spend an entire weekend there. If the race is on a Sunday morning, drive up Saturday morning to explore the city, stay in a hotel that night then drive home after the race. This allows you to see some fun places without the high price tag of multiple nights in a pricey hotel. This is exactly what my mom, my sister and I did for the Rock n Roll Nashville Half Marathon last year because the hotel price was higher than we were willing to pay.
How do you travel on a budget?
How do you save on lodging costs?