Wednesday, July 13, 2011

How to turn $58 into $1,000!

Previously I wrote about what we'd do one weekend if we had extra money. It was a fun little fantasy that I enjoyed daydreaming about.

I'm finding myself in the same boat again! I purchased vouchers from Travelzoo (a great website by the way!) a few months back for whale watching. My hubby has never been and I thought it would be a fun activity for us. The trip I booked is a day long event that also brings you over to Catalina Island for lunch and strolling around. The trip usually goes for $69 per person and I got a deal at $29 each! That's only $58 total.

We've also never been to Catalina and I figured this would be an inexpensive way for us to check it out and maybe plan a longer trip there in the future when we are out of debt. Old habits die hard though. As I finished booking the whale watching trip for this weekend, in honor of our 5 years of being together, I started thinking about how nice it would be to make a weekend away of the trip. That's where the fantasy started...

First off, we'd head up to Disneyland right after work on Friday. They are having a special on 3 day tickets for a discounted price, so I'd be sure to get those! We'd check into one of our favorite hotels, within walking distance of the park. We'd quickly head over to the park so we can have a bite to eat for dinner before hitting some rides. Historically this has been the best time for us to be at the park. All the little ones are tuckered out and the lines for the rides are short!

We'd spend the next few hours riding until our hearts content. At the end of the night, we'd watch the fireworks show and head back to the hotel. Saturday would be a leisurely day at the hotel pool with some more fun at Disney mixed in.

Sunday morning we'd wake up, enjoy the continental breakfast then head over to the coast for our whale watching departure. We'd have a delicious lunch on the water and shop til we had to get back on the boat. We'd head back to our hotel and enjoy a few more hours at Disney before having to drive home. All in all, this dream weekend would run us about $1,000!

Instead, reality hits and we won't be going to Disney or staying at the hotel we love. Nope, we'll be waking up at the crack of dawn, to make the almost 2 hour drive North so we can be on the boat by 7:30. We'll be lucky if we get a bite in before we hit the road since there will be no time to stop on the way!

Old habits die hard, but they do die. I didn't book all the things above, as I once would have. Instead, I've been online researching inexpensive restaurants on Catalina, so we can grab lunch but still stay within our $40 date budget. This little fantasy will go on my list of fun things we may do later down the road when we are debt free!


  1. Congrats on the progress and determination! Whale watching sounds awesome, as does the mini excursion on Catalina.

  2. Good for you! and I think you will look back on this date with good memories and have no guilt about blowing your budget to do it!

  3. wow kudos to you! We recently DID turn our little one night getaway into a 5 day trip, and honestly it was SO worth it for us, because we hadn't spent any time together in the past few months. I think some times you have to pick and choose what is important for you and your goals.

  4. When you're paying off debt, it's all about making concessions to get yourself out the fastest, so that you can really enjoy life guilt-free after the fact.
    I think you did a great job breaking an old habit and when you are finally done paying the debt, take the biggest vacation together that you can (don't charge it though!) and celebrate your debt-free life!

  5. Dreaming is still good so don't stop. They can be a reality for the future and since you have posted them some day when you look back you can see them and decide to go for them. I love the idea of whale watching just by itself though. It sounds like a nice get away for the both of you and you can still find something romantic to do since it will be just the two of you. You can probably take a small detour to see a monument or something of the sorts or just pull over to the coast and enjoy some time together in the car watching and listening to the waves.

  6. I think the planning/dreaming is sometimes better than the real deal!