Making plans is becoming more and more expensive, from the combination of travel and expenses to all of the other "necessities" that come with sticking your toes in the water and parking it on a lawn chair. Here are 10 day or weekend trips that you can take that might be local to you, WITHOUT breaking your piggy bank.
New York City, NYGiphy
Although this might seem expensive for all of the tourist attractions including the World Trade Center or restaurants in Times Square, NYC is actually relatively cheap. Taking the train from Philadelphia, or Boston or even DC will run you less than $125 while a flight could run you up to $300-$500, plus taking the train saves you time and effort without having to go through airport security
Believe it or not, coming to the city of Brotherly Love, or as I know it as Philly is still an amazing day trip. I find myself all the time taking the train into the city and roaming around new and upcoming neighborhoods. Catch a bite to eat in Old City, go Ice Skating at Penns Landing, visit the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and don't forget the most important part, digging into a Cheesesteak at Delessandro's! (Geno's and Pat's are Good too, just tourist traps!)
On the opposite side of Pennsylvania lies Pittsburgh, or as locals call it, the Burgh. Home of the University of Pittsburgh, Duquesne University, Carnegie Mellon University, and many others, this is a college town on steroids. Hell, they put french fries and coleslaw on a sandwich and it's AWESOME! Home of the most bridges in the country in one city, Pittsburgh is an affordable drive across PA and has beautiful views. I would highly recommend catching a Pittsburgh Pirates or Steelers Game, they go nuts for the Black and Gold!
Washington D.CPhoto by Jorge Alcala on Unsplash
Washington D.C, yes it is home to Donald Trump, but D.C has PLENTY of free stuff. Including all of the Smithsonian Museums, and you can't forget the National Zoo, it has PANDA bears! Yes! REAL PANDAS! A short train ride from NYC, Philly and Baltimore, D.C is a tourist paradise, especially in the springtime. About the time many colleges and universities go on spring break it is the beginning of Cherry Blossom growing season. For foodies, D.C has the second biggest Chinatown on the East Coast (Next to NYC of course). D.C may not be the best place to work but man is it sure a hopping place on a Saturday night!
Despite being INSANELY cold half of the year Chi-Town is one of the most unique cities in the country, once home to the mafia (although it still might be) this place is a foodie and tourist paradise. From Deep Dish pizza to hot dogs (everywhere else calls it a Chicago Dog) Chicago is the place for you. Many tourists go to Wrigley Field for a Cubs Game or take a trip to the Giant Bean. Feeling adventurous? Take the polar plunge into Lake Michigan, Chicago is known as the gates to the Midwest for their big hearts and unique culture.
Remember "One if, by land, two if by sea" from history class in high school? Well, this would be the place! Boston, Massachusetts is a beautiful city full of history it is also a HUGE college town. Boston boasts many firsts in American culture, including the first city to have a Paid Fire Department. But Bean Town is actually a short drive or train ride from NYC, and despite being semi-expensive, actually makes a good trip. Catch a Boston Bruins or Celtics game at TD Garden, or sip a nice cup of tea (DON'T THROW IT INTO THE HARBOR) along the Charles River. Boston has plenty of fun nightlife to experience with both Boston University and Harvard being close behind. Also, don't forget to Paaahk Ya Caah in the Haavaahd Yaahd!
New Orleans, LAwww.instagram.com
Get out your Green, Purple, and Gold! Geaux to the French Quarter, roam Bourbon Street and enjoy 24-hour bars and never-ending soul food. Mardi Gras is approaching and New Orleans is the perfect place for a day or weekend trip if you live down south. With LSU and the College of New Orleans less than a half an hour away, the fun will never end. Despite being devastated in Hurricane Katrina in 2005, this is still the number one party spot down south. Cross off that Mardi Gras bucket list and visit the city of the south! For you LSU fans, Geaux Tigers!
Atlantic City, NJupload.wikimedia.org
Are you feeling lucky? How about a game of 21? Texas Hold Em? Why not horse racing? HAVE IT ALL! Atlantic City, NJ is your way to go. If you don't feel like blowing your college reimbursement check at the Tropicana Casino, there are plenty of nightclubs and other activities to do in AC. About an hour and a half drive down the Garden State Parkway, or a Two and a half hour drive down the Atlantic City Expressway from Philadelphia, this is the haven for Garden Staters as well as out of towners. For foodies, enjoy fresh Atlantic seafood, and yes I actually mean fresh because it was still swimming in the ocean eight hours before sitting on your plate grilled and served with a lemon wedge and a side salad. For outdoors people, Bass Pro Shops has a MASSIVE location right off the bridge from the Atlantic City Expressway, which you could spend a whole day at. LITERALLY
Toronto, ON CanadaGeorgina Fernandez
Feeling like a trip North of the Border Eh? Well, why not spend the weekend in Toronto? Make sure you have your passport ready to go! The average Airbnb in Toronto is between $150-$175 CAN or $109-$135 USD. For hockey fans, this is something out of the history books. The Toronto Maple Leafs (NHL) and the Toronto Marlies (AHL) seasons are both in full swing and make for a great night out. For foodies, Little Italy in downtown Toronto is one of the most popular attractions in the city itself. Also on the way into Toronto, you can gaze at one of the Seven Wonders of the World at Niagara Falls (on the Canada side of course). Did someone mention Poutine?
There is NOTHING wrong with going back home! Catch up on that sleep, enjoy spending time with your dog! Go out with your high school friends. Say hi to your grandparents, or go back to work for a week or so and get that extra money, trust me you do NOT want to keep asking people to Venmo you for that cup of coffee that you need from pulling three all-nighters in a week. Plus your parents will be happy to see you, and you will get a true home-cooked meal. Which I don't know about you, but I am craving a good home cooked dinner.