Our oldest son was graduating for the Army in April but in the state of Arizona, for us that would be a 33 hour drive if making no stop which that is not possible.  So we decided to use our new points we earned from IHG promotions which we received for almost free by just sending envelopes. We compare the cost of 3 round trip tickets and renting a car at the airport vs a road trip with all of the expenses it comes with, we then notice we saved so much more if we left a few days earlier and drive from Florida to Arizona.

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Any trip can easily become a huge expense and sometimes we hold back from taking a trip when we see how quickly the numbers add up.  My advice is dont hold back enjoy life, there are many options on how we can save money while taking trips without breaking the bank.  This is why I am sharing this trip that seems small and simple but when adding the expenses it can easily add up.


If we were to book this trip today we would have more options since we have a few credit cards and many points available we could have booked some flights from Florida to Arizona but we felt a road trip was our best option since most of the states we visited were for the first time.



Based on day to day totals this trip shouldve been a total of $3323.40 but we paid $1064.60.  We booked one way flight for 3 from Dallas, Texas to Tampa, Florida which at the time (a few months before our road trip) was on special for $184.80 for all 3.  But on the day of our flight there was bad weather which caused the Houston airport to get shut down. Our flight had 1 stop and that was at Houston so our flight got cancelled, we called and they couldnt find an alternative flight so we got ready and drove to the Dallas airport.  While we were in line for about 2 hours we check for other flights and right then we saw the best option that had the best price was American Airlines but it was for over $400 one way ticket per person.  We saw this as our last option since there was no other flights but luckily United Airlines was able to book us to that same flight we were looking at from American Airlines which had no stops and saving us about $1200.  In addition we received a meal voucher once we called United Airlines of $100.  Something that was horrible to hear turned out to work out for the best..

20160414_135402This trip was very much needed it was special in many ways and for a few days we got to spend time together as a family of 4 before our oldest son was sent overseas.

Day 1 – Army Graduation Road Trip Day 1 Naval Aviation & USS Battleship (Saved $349)

Day 2 – Army Graduation Road Trip Day 2 New Orleans & San Antonio (Saved $102.82)

Day 3 – Army Graduation Road Trip Day 3 Arizona (Saved $169.13)

Day 4 – Army Graduation Road Trip Day 4 Graduation Day (Saved $184.05)

Day 5&6 – Army Graduation Road Trip Day 5&6 (Saved $171.07)

Overall for this trip we paid a total of $716.39 if I’m including just the hotel stays, flight, car rental and gas.  Hope this post is an inspiration for anyone who is looking to take a road trip or simply visit a few states on a budget.