PARTY DOWN! How to Road Trip for Under $100

Road Trip Under $100

As the end of summer nears, I’m yearning for one last little trip to visit friends or family or maybe even go camping with friends and family.  (And I was seriously inspired by Anna’s sweet babymoon adventures).  Here’s an imaginary road trip I would love….

The best road trips are un-rushed, and full of pit stops in amazing spots.  This cute camera to capture scenic views is only $30!  I like to work a cool pair of sunnies into everything, but these are a definite must while on the road for long hours.  Keep it breezy by wearing super-soft shorts with a comfy waistband.  Grab some peanut butter sandwiches or trail mix-y snacks from home to avoid the gross, overpriced gas station food.  And have your playlists ready!  I’ve been loving Amy Moore’s recent picks (Summer/Tropic) lately.  The rest of your money will actually get you somewhere!

(P.S.  Don’t have a place to stay at the other end of your journey?  Check out Couchsurfing.)


How do you guys save money on the road or just whenever you’re traveling? We’d love to hear your tips!


Lauren Johnson is a filmmaker/producer living in West Hollywood who enjoys a great foreign thriller, leisure beers, and non-primary colors.  Lauren also writes the blog LOCONCEPTS.

P.S. I LOVE Airbnb because it lets me feel like a local while also helping me save money on food costs (since I can use the kitchen!) CLICK HERE to get $55 for you to use on your 1st trip!  


7 thoughts on “PARTY DOWN! How to Road Trip for Under $100

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  1. Amy

    A road-trip sounds great right about now! And I’m so glad you liked the playlists enough to include them in your post — thank you! :)

  2. kat

    Not to be a downer, but I’m surprised and disappointed. Unfortunately, this Party Down Road Trip post sort of sounds like advertising to me to buy stuff.

    I’m confused. I thought this was about easing up on spending, using what you have and keeping down costs? Most folks have a camera on their phone, already own sunglasses, shorts and music so a lot of the suggestions don’t make sense.

    If we are talking about frugal and not spending much, this is how I’ve done it for many years:

    –skip the camera—Do you already have one on your phone? Can you borrow a camera? Or, do you already own a camera? Or, don’t take one at all!

    –skip the sunglasses—You must have a pair already. Why buy another pair? Borrow a friend’s cool pair if you have to. Just ask.

    –skip the shorts—Do you have something in your dresser that will work for traveling? If not, it’s understandable to go out and find something affordable and comfortable. And remember to buy a shirt of some kind too if you don’t already have one (lol). Borrowing works too.

    –music? I’d use what I have or borrow some tunes or audio books from a friend.

    I’d save my money for:

    –road snacks, after I had checked what was in my fridge and pantry

    –groceries, after I had checked what was in my fridge and pantry

    –maybe one meal out a day, or not

    –affordable lodging, car camping, hostels, couch surfing

    Ultimately, creating fun memories and getting away is what a road trip is all about, right?—not buying more stuff. You don’t need much. And if you end up borrowing items from friends or family, reciprocate! Or, simply make them a homemade gift like baked goods or give veggies from your garden, etc.

    I always have liked the saying: Keep It Simple, Silly! So, with a big KISS, thanks for your web site. I DO really LOVE it! <3

  3. S. R.

    My husband and I just took our four kids ages 5-10 on a 9 day road trip for just over $1000. Most of the money was spent on gas an we camped in a tent, which saves a ton of money. With 6 of us, staying away from restaurants is rule number one. Making that happen took a lot of preplanning. I froze dinners ahead of time to store in a cooler and we cooked those over the fire. We also came up with emergency grocery store meal plans that were healthy, cheap, and so easy we would not be tempted by the convenience of fast food. Example: bag of prewashed lettuce, package of fajita tortillas, ham from the deli= wrap sandwiches.

  4. Laura Stroth

    Thank you for sharing your life with ‘us’. So many of the topics that you write about are things that I have thought about and often wonder if I am the only one…’s so comforting to connect to others who are honest about life. Much love :-)

  5. Leslie

    I’m so glad I found your blog & I love reading it. Hopefully in the next couple of months the boyfriend and I can take a few trips. I hope you have had a great holiday weekend!


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