Updated: Oct 22, 2019
Do you love traveling or in desperate need of a vacation, but feel like you don’t have enough money?
Great news! You can still visit fantastic places on a small budget! Since the spring season is quickly approaching in the United States, it is only fitting to celebrate the end of winter by booking an affordable spring vacation.
Austin, Seattle and New Orleans are the three cheap cities you need to visit now. Check out my super affordable itinerary down below. It will give you an idea of which activities you can do and which attractions to see on a small budget.
I am confident that you can travel affordably because I have proved it!
Austin is the state capital of Texas. The city is known for its eclectic music scene, beautiful trails, and calming lakes. The tourist and locals both love to hike, bike and swim in Austin.
Area: Bouldin / Downtown / East Austin (Neighborhoods with Local Favorites)
Breakfast: You have to go to Bouldin Creek Cafe for breakfast. I recommend ordering The Renedict - Grilled Ciabatta served open faced topped with organic baby spinach, two over medium organic, tofu scramble, local tomatoes, tofu ‘bacon' and a home-made vegan Hollandaise sauce ($15)
Activity 1: Burn off breakfast by taking a walk around Lady Bird Lake. It is 10 miles of trails that are great for running and walking (FREE).
Lunch: Enjoy a quick bite to eat at Halcyon ($15).
Activity 2: Take a Brewery Tour at Hops & Grain (FREE).
Dinner: If you're a fan of a great burger head over to Arlo's (AKA THE BEST VEGAN FOOD TRUCK). "Arlo’s serves vegan comfort food in a bistro style setting for the Austin nightlife scene. They support local, organic, and non-GMO products" ($10).
Total: $40 tax not included
Splurge Total: $50
During my time in this city, I took over 500 pictures! I had such a fantastic time visiting my friends, exploring, hiking, running on trails, touring the capitol of Texas, and more! You can have a cheap, marvelous time too! You can see a full list of activities and restaurants here.
Seattle is a gorgeous city surrounded by water, mountains and greenery. The Experience Music Project, The Space Needle, Seattle Art Museum, Pike Place Market and Pioneer Square are just some of the many wonderful attractions.
Area: Downtown Seattle
Breakfast: For an inexpensive breakfast head over to Bang Bang Café off of Western Ave. ($9).
Activity 1: After breakfast, take a 20-minute walk to meet your Pike Place Market Tour Guide. Book a free tour of the neighborhood through Seattle Free Walking Tours. The tour is free, but you can pay what you want ($10).
Lunch: After your tour, walk through the market on your own and soak it all in. Be prepared to buy many handcrafted goods (optional). I enjoyed happy hour and vegan nachos at El Borracho: Taqueria & Cantina ($10-15).
Activity 2: Walk to Alaskan Way after lunch and take an a1-hour narrated harbor cruise. Argosy Cruises offers a ride where you’ll learn about Seattle history, waterfront and skyline ($27).
Dinner: Go to Happy Hour at Plum Bistro and enjoy a drink for ($6 - optional). Their vegan eats will cost you $9-13. I highly recommend their Mini BBQ and Buffalo Seitan Burger
If you want to know all the adventures I embarked on in Seattle, view my complete day-to-day itinerary here! You can also check out How A Travel App Saved me big Bucks: Hotel Tonight Overview to learn how I booked an amazing hotel in Seattle for almost nothing!
Total: $68 tax not included
Splurge Total: $88
#3 New Orleans
New Orleans is famous for its architecture, culture, history, music and nightlife. To thoroughly explore every inch of the city, all you need is $50. There are several local spots and hidden gems that will give you a TRUE New Orleans experience.
Area: Lower Garden/ Mid-City (Neighborhoods with Local Favorites)
Breakfast: For an inexpensive breakfast head over to Mojo Coffeehouse in the Lower Garden District ($5).
Activity 1: After coffee, take a 15-minute walk to meet your Lower Garden Tour Guide. Book a free tour of the neighborhood through Free Tours by Foot. The tour is free, but you can pay what you want ($10).
Lunch: Walk (or splurge on Lyft $6) to The Ruby Slipper ($12). The Ruby Slipper is a favorite spot in New Orleans so be prepared to wait.
Activity 2: Ride the St.Charles trolley ($3 round trip) to City Park and enjoy the 1,300-acre park in New Orleans for FREE.
Dinner: Go to Happy Hour at Vessel and enjoy a drink for ($6). Small Plates and Flatbread will cost you $9-13.
Total: $49 tax not included
Splurge Total: $55
Exploring New Orleans on $50 a Day is possible. It is proven and tested by me! Along the way I splurged on certain activities, like paying to paddle boat on the pond at City Park to gain more memories and cultural knowledge. To view a detailed four-day itinerary for your stay in New Orleans click here!