Every year I do a girls trip. I started this tradition about 7 or 8 years ago. I have gone several different places. It all started in New York City. I did New York 2 years in a row and loved it. The 3rd year it was Savannah and Charleston. Las Vegas the 4th year (my niece turned 21). Trip number 5 Washington DC. Trip number 6 was back to Charleston. Trip number 7 is where I am gonna start my stories of how frugal I get with my travels.The magic all happened in New Orleans (or the few months before when I was planning).

One night I got an invitation to a Gala in New Orleans, my neighbor and sister said they would go, so we went! That very night I started looking at air fair. I was fortunate because I had a voucher from a previous flight (I will talk about vouchers often, I will explain them later). I also went to work on the hotel. Fortunately I have friends that work for hotels so we were able to get the Waldorf Astoria a 5 star hotel on a great budget.

The word was out and my sisters and I were joined by 3 great friends! I discovered that 6 girls on a girls trip is a great number. We put 3 girls to each room. We had 3 nights. Each girl gets one in a bed all to themselves. The hotel was amazing! Very close to Bourban St. and Canal. We also split meals everywhere we went, so we got to try different foods and didn’t over eat.

My next item to plan was transportation to and from the airport. I looked up cabs, we would have to get a van for 6 of us or take 2 cabs. Plus we would have to stand in the long cab lines. Then there is the shuttle, you paid for round trip but you stop at many other hotels first. I looked into limos, that was quite pricey. Luckily the night I looked into limos Groupon posted a deal for limos. I got a limo waiting for us at the curb, for less than the cost of the shuttle. Groupon also offered a trolley tour and cemetery tour for more than half off.

I called to order  our tickets to the Gala. After explaining I was returning from California to New Orleans just because of their Gala we got the tickets for $25 off. Then they treated us like VIP. We did get the majority of the attendees dancing!

One of my things I like to do on a trip is everyone that goes has to buy a piece of jewelry to remind us of our trip. Part of the fun is shopping for the piece. We found ours in a boutique and managed to get a break on the piece because we bought 6.

We toured, stayed, ate, rode and partied all first class! It was amazing! New Orleans is a very fun place to go, just remember you don’t have to break the bank to do it. 

Key budget items: Score an inexpensive nice hotel, check out Groupon and Livingsocial before you go anywhere (months before you go) share meals, and ask for better price!

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