Road Trips: Cutting Food Costs (Part 2 of my Road Trip Series)

road trip

I am all about saving money while on the road. I also like the ease of having our own foods on hands and since those to things go so well together I thought I’d share some ideas we use to save money on food for road trips!

How I save money while on a road trip…

Muffins

Breakfast on the Road: Bake muffins ahead of time and package in baggies to eat on the road. Make little throw away fruit cups with fresh fruit ahead of time. Individual small bags of cereal are great for toddlers served in a snack trap.

Lunchables

Lunch on the Road: Things we eat on the road for lunch are; *PB&J’s, **homemade lunchables, fruit, veggies, chips, and drinks. 

*Make PB&J’s with an entire loaf of bread, cut into shapes or squares, put each sandwich in a baggie, then place them all back in the loaf bag and freeze over night. Put in the cooler and pass out as needed for lunch or snacks on the road!

**Slice up a block of cheese into squares, cut up lunch meat & pepperoni into shapes, put 6-10 cheese and meat in each baggie, then in a separate baggie put 6-10 crackers. AT lunch pass each person a bag of meat, cheese and crackers.

I PREPACKAGE ALL OF OUR VEGGIES AND FRUITS INTO SMALL BAGGIES FOR QUICK EATING ON THE ROAD WHICH PAIR GREAT WITH LUNCH.

Drinks on the Road: We avoid sugary drinks and instead try to stick to a lot of water but I do let my children have a couple Gatorades or flavored water with their meals. I freeze most of our drinks over night then place in the cooler the morning of the trip to help keep the other items colder longer. I always travel with sippy cups of milk for each child, especially for my toddler who is lactose intolerant.  

Snacks

Snacks on the Road: I like to take an entire box of gold fish, crackers, toddler puffs, fruit snacks, raisins, etc and sort them into individual snack size bags ahead of time. I usually make every child two bags of each snack per day we will be on the road. It’s also a good idea to put little special treats like gummy bears, lollipops, and licorice in snack sized bags ahead of time too! (This helps prevent my kids from thinking we need to buy something when we stop for potty breaks and it also prevents fights about sharing.)

Avoid buying food at convenient stores…they are the most expensive there. Instead make a quick stop at a grocery store if you run low on food or drinks.

Dinner… We typically will stop for dinner at a diner, restaurant, or fast food place if we have been on the road all day (see my tips below to save money buying food). If we start driving late in the day I treat dinner just as I would lunch on the road…sandwiches, lunchables, fruit, veggies, and a drink.

If we stop at any restaurants I try to have coupons on hand to save money. Or stop at places that kids eat free. I also try to buy individual food items rather than meals at fast food places then I use our own drinks and snacks to supplement the rest of the meal (so long as we will be in the car eating).

My next post will be up later this week which will highlight how I organize our clothes in our luggage to streamline our daily routine while vacationing!


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  1. […]  Check back tomorrow for my tips on how to save money on the road! […]

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    Road Trips: Cutting Food Costs (Part 2 of my Road Trip Series)

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