13 Spring Break Activities You Can Do In Georgia That Won't Break Your Bank Account

13 Spring Break Activities You Can Do In Georgia That Won't Break Your Bank Account

Because not everyone can travel this break.
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Spring break is truly a God given gift: a week long break filled with perfect weather, no worries and relaxation before school slams students with reviews, tests, quiz and finals. Most people make the most of this week through international travel, hanging out with their friends at the beach or take massive road trips to cool destinations — all that we spend scrolling past on social media, still at home. If you aren't able to travel or live out the break listening to the ocean waves, there's no reason that the break can't still be as relaxing or entertaining. In fact, most of the vacations people do take during spring break are extremely expensive. Here are 13 alternative activities you can do that are just equally as fun, and definitely not as expensive.


1. Visit your local movie theater! ($12-14 / person)

The movies are one of the best places to go to hang out with your friends or family members and keep entertained. This year is an amazing year to visit the theater, as we've already been hit with new releases such as the widely successful "Black Panther," as well as other releases such as "The Greatest Showman" and "Maze Runner: The Death Cure." You can visit and see these amazing movies, and plan ahead to visit other great releases this year, such as the long (long) awaited "Incredibles II" and others such as "Deadpool 2" and "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Gridelwald."

2. Visit Centennial Olympic Park! (Depending on activity — FREE to about $13 / person)

Centennial Olympic Park is not just a park, but really the center of action in downtown Atlanta. If you're a music lover, visiting this park is meant for you as it is commonly the home for musical artists who sing live at the park. At noon, the park holds a free lunchtime concert that features a variety of music from local artists. On Wednesday evenings, the Southern Company Amphitheater preforms with a variety of jazz, soul and R&B music, with tickets selling for only five dollars at the box office.

The food around the park is also amazing, great for families and individuals looking to spend a day in the park. The park itself is also home to its fountain of rings that showcased the Olympic Rings symbol when Atlanta had been host to the games. Adults and children are free to play in the fountain that sprays water to music and lights up and are also free to view the fountain show that plays four times a day.

3. Go to a free concert or show! (FREE)

Along with Atlanta growing as a major utopia across the nation, it is also growing as a beacon to industry, specifically flim. Atlanta has been the home to many successful series such as "The Vampire Diaries," "Stranger Things," "The Hunger Games" series, "Ant-Man" and tons of other movies and TV shows. As a result, many opportunities are brought about for adults and children to see these productions take action through participation as extras on the film, or apart of live studio audiences needed for airing. You can find a way to participate or see your favorite film here.

4. Visit and climb Stone Mountain! ($20-25 / person)

Especially for those who seek a change in their repetitive fitness routine, climbing Stone Mountain on their mountain trail is a great way to find exercise and experience the view of Atlanta from thousands of feet in the air. Stone Mountain is the world's largest exposed piece of granite and surrounded by a massive park visited by locals everyday. Inside the park, tons of activities are available to see and complete, such as the SkyHike, where you can fly through the treetops around the mountain, visiting the GeyserTowers or the 4-D theater.

SEE ALSO: 13 Must-Do Summer Activities Around Forsyth County, GA

5. Try a new restaurant! ($15-25 / person)

Atlanta is home to thousands of unique, and delicious restaurants to satisfy any craving. My favorite is "The Sundial," 73 feet above the Westin Hotel. This restaurant spins in a complete circle, giving guests a complete view of Atlanta during the day and night.

SEE ALSO: 4 Asian Restaurants For A Casual Night Out In Cumming, Georgia

6. Binge-watch a new series on Netflix! (FREE — $7)

For those who choose to spend the break relaxing at home, a great way to spend your time is binge watching a new series on Netflix. My favorite include "White Collar," "Quantico" and "13 Reasons Why."

7. Have a sleepover movie-marathon with your best friends! (FREE)

Another great activity to do at home or locally, planning a sleepover with your friends can be extremely fun and relaxing, as your able to kick back and be yourself. Renting movies from your local RedBox or simply bringing all of your favorite movies to the party can be fun which allows a marathon of your collected favorites. It's a night of laughter and overall, a great time spent.

8. Go camping! ($20-25 / person)

Being in Georgia, you see pine trees for miles as Georgia was once a dense forest. Forests still are widely populous, and a way to experience them differently can be from camping! Gathering your favorite friends and closest family members, enjoy a night or two camped under the stars in Georgia's forests and have fun building bonfires and going star gazing. Georgia's forests are home to many beautiful animals as well, such as deer and rabbits that can be a perfect photography moment for aspiring artists.

9. Hit the books. (FREE)

For the readers, finally having time to go to your local public library is a perfect spring break activity. Have fun gazing aisle to aisle thousands of best sellers and must-reads by authors with unique voices and an uncanny ability to recreate heart stopping moments. Drowning yourself in the classics can be an educational, reflective and entertaining time.

SEE ALSO: 5 Sci-Fi Novels That Will Feature On-Screen In 2018 And Bring All The Bookworms To The Yard

10. Have a photo shoot at the Beltline! (FREE)

Atlanta's Beltline features 22 miles of unused railroad tracks and open green space that's perfect for the aesthetic photo shoot. It is also the home to "Art on the Beltline," the Southeast's largest temporary public art project, where tourists visit everyday to see artists from around the world showcase their work. Besides being picturesque, Atlanta's Beltline is also home to many parks that are encircled by restaurants, skate parks and gift shops; a perfect day for you, your family and your pet.

11. Enjoy a family game night! ($20-30 / person)

Many entertainment facilities such as "Main Event" and "Slingshot" provide entertainment for the entire family; allow the kids to have fun playing video games while the adults can engage in bowling or laser tag. Enjoying spending time and bonding with your family as you race each other in mini karts and battle in air hockey. At the end, the amount of credits earned from playing games can be added and redeemed for prizes!

12. Go river tubing! (FREE — $10/person)

Within Georgia's thick forests lie rampant rivers that snake throughout Georgia's pine, and provide a perfect spot for people to go swimming and river tubing! Take a dive and explore Georgia's waters, while cooling off from the heat. Splash around with family members or friends, or float along the current in Georgia's natural lazy river, without the wait in line. A fun get together spot, swimming and river tubing provides a fun, cheap alternative to expensive water parks commonly visited during break.

13. Visit family! (FREE)

Nothing's a better way to spend your free time than visiting those you grew up around and love you. Finally having time to take the hour drive to visit grandma is a heart warming and long overdue gift, not only to the loved one but to you too. A way to reflect on time and the past, relax in the arms of your family and enjoy the visit while it lasts.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels / Bruce Mars

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6 Ways To Save Money As A Broke College Student

Money saving tips so you can afford adult life while also paying for an expensive tuition.

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It is difficult to work, attend college, and make all your payments on rent, tuition, and bills, (not to mention finding a little money to spare on yourself). These are six ways to save that have helped me in this money stressful time and that you should use too in order to reduce the expenses of adulting.

1. Saving money on rent.

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Apartments are cheaper than houses because most include some of the bills in the rent cost. Make sure to check what amenities apartments offer such as free wi-fi, trash removal, or water included. When choosing roommates the more the better for cost. You should get at least one roommate because it is difficult to afford even a studio apartment living on your own. If you want pets you should choose a place that doesn't have pet rent because even if you have a large non-refundable pet fee it is cheaper in the long run then paying twenty a month per animal.

2. Saving money on bills.

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If you choose to live in an apartment complex, having an apartment on a higher floor will make your electric bill cheaper in the winter because heat rises. Even though your electric bill will be higher in the summer you can afford to work more because classes won't be in session. When purchasing light bulbs get ones that are energy efficient and use lights with batteries to help save on the electric bill. Also make sure to turn off all lights when you aren't in the room. You can save water by not running the faucet when you brush your teeth. Anyway you can think to conserve water and energy use that to your advantage.

3. Saving money on food.

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Your best friend is buying in bulk when you go to get groceries. I personally buy ten pound ground beef logs, cut them up, and place them in the freezer to use later. Everything is cheaper when you buy in bulk and you save time grocery shopping. If you don't know how to cook now is the time to learn because frozen and fast food eats up your money. You should also go to your local food bank if you are really struggling because everyone has to eat. Don't be afraid to ask for help if you need it! Going without food to pay your rent is not something anyone should have to do.

4. Saving money on furniture.

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You should buy used if at all possible when finding furniture for your apartment or house. Living in a college town has its perks because people are constantly moving you can find great deals at garage sales or on craigslist. For instance I got my couch for free, I just had to move it out of a graduating students apartment. You can also check out thrift stores and consignment shops in your town.

5. Saving money on entertainment.

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There are a lot of deals and discounts for college students so take advantage of that for entertainment.. For example movie theaters usually offer a student discount and if you go to a matinee showing, tickets are even cheaper. Find out when your local bar's happy hour is and use it. Also see what meal deals are offered by restaurants around you, such as 3 items for 10 or specials on Thursday nights. You can also use apps to find coupons, my personal favorite being pocket points because it rewards you for studying.

6. Saving money and side hustles.

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Put back money during the summer in order to have a backup fund for when things get crazy busy during the school year. Scope out banks and find out what interests they offer on savings accounts in order to increase the amount of money you have saved over the years. If you need extra money you can get paid for donating plasma and you can sometimes find research studies that will offer participants cash for things as simple as just an opinion. There are also baby sitting and pet sitting apps you can download to get one time gigs if you are low on funds for the month.

These are all great tips that I have been taught or have learned living as a broke college student. It isn't easy living life in the adult world and pursuing a degree at the same time. I hope these tips will help you save money and keep you out of hard times.

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11 Financial Tips For College Grads Who Don't Know Where To Start

Most people learn how to navigate their finances as they go, at the cost of making several mistakes and starting good habits later than they should've. Don't be like most people!

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Adulting is hard, especially when it comes to money. If you're like me and you took a personal finance class in high school or college, you probably don't remember much because the information wasn't relevant to you at the time. Well, now you're almost done with college and you're ready to be welcomed into the real world as a freshly-minted adult. Suddenly you realize that class was probably one of the most important classes you ever could've taken.

Here are 11 tips to start making money moves today.

1. Start building your credit

It may not seem important now, but it's a good idea to start building your credit early. In three to five years or so, when you're ready to apply for a car or home loan, you're going to want to be approved to get the best interest rates, and that means having a credit score of at least 760. See tips two and three for more on how to increase your credit score.

2. Open a credit card if you don't have one already

One huge factor in your credit score is how long your oldest credit card account has been open, so you want to make sure to start early. A first card many people get is called a "secured" credit card, which basically acts like a debit card so the bank knows you won't go all "Shopaholic" and max it out. Make sure to pay every single one of your monthly payments on time and in full. No excuses, no exceptions.

3. Make all of your student loan payments on time and in full

JUST DO IT.

4. Embrace the concept of paying yourself first

Paying yourself first is a concept that many millionaires, even billionaires, swear by. Decide how much of your income you want to save. Then set up a portion of your paycheck to deposit directly into your savings before you can even think about it. The rest can go to your checking account for spending on bills, food, rent, and other expenses.

5. Build a three- to six-month emergency fund

Did you know that 33% of Americans would struggle to pay $1,000 in an emergency? This is a serious issue. You don't want to ever experience living "paycheck to paycheck," let alone have a minor crisis throw your life upside down. That's why you're going to build this emergency fund before you do anything else with your money. Think of this fund as something that you can't touch until you absolutely need it. If and when that time comes, you'll know, and you'll be so grateful that you were smart and were prepared.

6. Open a Roth IRA

There are so many things to be said about Roth IRAs and why you should get one as a new college graduate. In short, IRA stands for Individual Retirement Account. A Roth IRA is unique because any money you put into it is taxed now, so you won't have to pay taxes on it when you're retired and ready to use it. The main benefit: you also won't have to pay any taxes on the money you earn in the account. In addition, because you're young, you get to take advantage of the power of compound interest for a long time before you retire. This could potentially earn you hundreds of thousands of dollars. The best time to open a Roth IRA was yesterday. So go do it now!

7. Contribute as much as possible to your 401k

A 401k is basically an investment bank account that you can't use until you retire, and it will be taxed once you start using it (so it is not taxed now). Many employers offer 401k matching, and they open one up for you when you start your first job. If your employer offers 100% matching up to 6% of your salary, that means that if you can afford to put 6% of your income into your 401k, your employer will also contribute the exact same amount. Listen to me: this is free money. I like free money. You like free money. Take it.

8. Open a high-yield savings account

This is 2019. Don't keep your money in cash or in a regular savings account, where it'll depreciate 2-3% in value every single year it sits there. Get yourself a high-yield savings account, in which interest rates are anywhere between 2.0 and 2.25%, and watch your money make money while you sleep.

9. Start tracking your spending

Since it has become much easier to make quick and painless purchases these days, you should definitely be aware of your spending. I personally like to use a free app, like Mint, that does all the work for you because it puts all of your financial accounts (ie. savings and checking accounts, investments, loans, assets, etc.) into one place.

10. Create a monthly budget for each of your spending categories

These include food, housing, transportation, entertainment, subscriptions, health and wellness, and maybe more. You should know the things you always buy on a monthly basis and how much they typically cost. Comparing your budget to what you really spent after a month will show you exactly where your weaknesses are. Try to stay at or under your budget for each category every month unless there's an unusual event, like a vacation or a car repair.

11. Learn the basics of investing

Compared to the other tips on this list, this is one you can put on the back-burner for a bit. However, that doesn't make it any less important. It's critical for everyone who is financially independent to understand the basics of stocks, bonds, Exchange-Traded Funds, Mutual Funds, REITs, and more that you can use to diversify your portfolio, including in your new Roth IRA and 401k!

What are you waiting for? Up your financial game!

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