Simply Saving Saturday: A Trip To Boston

My husband has vacation this week and we took our first family trip to Boston! When my husband first mentioned the idea, my first concern was with the cost. I could think of many other practical things that we could spend that money on. As our children get older, I am realizing that our summers as a family are growing shorter and I don't want to miss out on special times with them for the sake of practicality.

On the train to Boston

On this trip we opted for convenience instead of frugality and bought a travel package from a travel agent. The package included train tickets (we took the Amtrak from Portland, ME), tickets to the places we wanted to visit, and vouchers for lunch at Quincy Market (we would have paid about $50 for lunch!). We probably could have gotten the tickets cheaper if we had bought them ourselves, but the convenience of having everything done for us and mailed to us was worth the little bit of extra money that we spent.

There were a few ways that we were able to save on our trip:

  • We paid cash for everything.

  • Our original plan was to spend the night in Boston, but after looking at hotel prices, we decided to drive to Portland the day before, spend the night, take an early train to Boston in the morning and return home that evening. It was a long day, but the hotel in Portland was half the cost of a hotel in Boston and saved us about $100.

  • We left for Portland after lunch, saving us from paying to eat that meal at a restaurant. 

  • We were told that the food on the train was very expensive, so we brought our own snacks and drinks.

at Legoland Discovery Center

  • We walked....a lot. We took the "T" to Somerville and back for our visit to Legoland, but while we were in Boston, we decided to walk. 

I actually wouldn't recommend walking around Boston if you're not familiar with the city. It was very difficult finding our way around, and we weren't able to see much of the area because we were so busy trying to find where we needed to be. At the end of a very long day, we found ourselves on the opposite side of the city from the train station where we needed to catch our train back to Portland.

One sweet lady must have seen our dazed, confused faces and tired children and took pity on us. After giving us directions back to North Station, she told us we could follow her, but she had to catch a train. We soon learned what she meant. What she meant was that she was walking very fast to catch a train and we could try to keep up with her. We did manage to keep her in sight and get to the station on time for our trip back to Portland. Bottom line - spend a little extra and ride the "T" to get around Boston.

Overall, we had a wonderful time and it is a trip we will never forget. In fact, we are hoping to go again someday!