There’s something really special about getting up early and loading the car to head to Dollywood for some family fun. Road trips should be memorable and pain-free. Here are some tips that help me save money and time when preparing for our three-hour road trip to our favorite theme park.
Tip 1: Spend a few minutes and think through what you want to take with you. Make a packing check list. What do you want for the car? (Snacks, things to entertain the kids, etc.) Don’t forget what you need for the park (Season Passes, your refillable mugs and popcorn buckets, stuff for the stroller and diaper bag, a change of clothes, etc.)
Tip 2: Fuel up your car the night before and check for any scheduled roadwork. I’d even do a traffic check as soon as you’re up the day of your trip.
Tip 3: Eat a hearty breakfast at home. This saves you money and time wasted in a fast food line. Feed your family something filling like oatmeal and a banana. Another idea is to make a quiche that you can make a couple days ahead. Heat and serve! I tend to save around $15-20 with intentional moves like this. That’s money that I like to put toward face painting or a Dollywood bubble light wand.
Tip 4: This may be obvious, but it’s worth including anyway. Make it a rule that everyone makes a pit stop prior to heading out. Moms, you’re nodding your heads with me, aren’t you?!
Tip 5: This is a fun one: road trip music! Have your playlist set and ready for the road. Put your favorite Dolly Parton songs in the line up to hit the road grooving. My favorites are “9 to 5,” “Together You and I” and “Islands in the Stream.”