Budgeting For Travel

One Trip, One Budget, How Did It Work Out?

Stefani Vader


photo by author

Doing The Research

My husband and I had talked about taking a trip back to Tennessee for years, but the years ticked by and we never went. Last Christmas, I decided I was going to make it happen.

We don’t ever go anywhere together. It can be expensive and it seems as though money is always tight so traveling was never put onto the priority list. By prioritizing this trip, I made sure that we had the money before we left, and we wouldn’t come back worried about how we were going to pay the trip off.

It all started with doing some research.

I Googled fun activities to do in Tennessee and also waterfalls. If we were going to spend a bunch of money, I wanted to make sure I got to see a waterfall, and that together we could create some memories we’d never forget. We weren’t set on a specific area of Tennessee, so there was a lot of different places to look into. One of the places that intrigued me was Fall Creek Falls.

Fall Creek Falls has one of the tallest waterfalls on the east side of the United States. It measures at 256 feet high. I love waterfalls so I dug in to the area to see what else there was.

Not only was there several waterfalls, but there was also an adventure tree-top canopy course with ziplines. I knew that both my husband and I would enjoy doing something like that, and we had never done anything like that together before.

But, that was only one day. We were planning on taking a four day trip, so what else could we do? I remembered that the last time we drove through Alabama my husband mentioned checking out some caves, so I googled caves in Alabama and Tennessee.

There were two that popped up that looked amazing. One was Ruby Falls which had an underground waterfall, and the other was Raccoon Mountain caverns. Both of those were close to Chattanooga, so I found a hotel there.

And that was it. I had our main destination, and three different activities to go do. The rest of the time was ours to spend however we wanted. I didn’t want it to be stressful or too busy, and I wanted to leave plenty of time in case my husband found something else he wanted to go do.



Stefani Vader

Lover of reading and writing. Hater of retail work. Small fish in a big pond, learning as I go.