For many families, Labor Day weekend is the last chance they have to spend some quality vacation time together before the school year begins again.
If you want to get away for the weekend but don’t want to spend an arm and a leg to do so, think about vacation locales near your hometown. You can also save on housing costs by switching with a friend or by finding someone who needs a housesitter for the weekend.
Many people live within a hour or two’s drive of the beach or a lake. Spend your Labor Day relaxing on the beach or floating on a secluded lake, but don’t pay to stay within driving distance of your home. Instead, pack up the car with a picnic lunch and your sunscreen every morning of the weekend and drive on over. The money you save on accommodations can be money you spend on entertainment, such as rides on the boardwalk or on a fancy meal for dinner.
Some websites have listings for people who are looking to swap homes for the weekend. You may be lucky and find someone who lives in an area you want to visit and who wouldn’t mind spending their Labor Day in your town. If trading houses for the weekend with a stranger makes you nervous, see if a friend who lives out of town is willing to trade for Labor Day, so that you each get your own cheap getaway. You may also want to investigate house-sitting, where you stay in a stranger’s home while they are away and take care of their garden or pets. House-sitting is not for everyone, especially if you have several small children or a fear of dogs.
Visit the Big City
If you’re not the type to spend the last days of summer at the beach, a visit to a city, whether it’s near or far, may be the perfect cheap getaway for you. Several bus lines offer ridiculously cheap fares to cities such as Washington DC, New York City, and Boston. You may have to plan in advance to get the cheapest fare, but even the more expensive fares cost less than flying or taking the train. Scope out deals in the city of your choice. For instance, you can visit the museums and monuments in DC for free or stand in line at the TKTS booth in New York for half-price tickets to Broadway shows.