Since 2006 my birthday has typically fallen on some of sort trip away. I have been very fortunate to celebrate my big day in places like Corfu Greece, Las Vegas, Hawaii, Mexico, and New Orleans. With plans in the works for a big trip in 2014 this years celebrations were kept closer to home. This is not to diminish how awesome the trip was. How could it be? It’s my birthday we are talking about. It is more to point out that cheap and fun trips can be found close to home. I will break down just how cheap at the end of this post.
Seattle on the Cheap
I have said it before and I will say it again, I love trains. It is by far the most comfortable way to travel and the Amtrack Cascades line connecting Vancouver BC to Washington and Oregon is no different. Ridiculously roomy seats, great scenery, and a bar car makes for a great trip. We headed to Seattle as a group of 8 and managed to drink the bar car dry before hitting the border. It was agreed that this was impressive. The blurry weekend that followed included 3 more peeps joining our wolfpack, cheap drinks, ski ball, an underground tour, king crab legs at 3:00 AM, and a Seattle Mariners game that didn’t suck.
The most memorable event happened after “getting lost” on our way to the Lake Union area for an afternoon of happy hour. We decided to walk and stumbled upon a scene straight out of “The Walking Dead.” You know the image where all the cars are lined up leaving Atlanta and no cars were going in? Well we were walking towards an overpass that had a ton of congested traffic to our right and absolutely none on the road we were on. Odd. We cautiously walked on towards the dark overpass. After a guy that had a look of slight panic jogged past us we started to reconsider our route. Huh. Ahead we could see a few people wandering about, almost zombie like. hmmm. When a guy with one arm hobbled past us we knew it was time to change course. Thankfully there was stairs that lead us away from the zombies below.
But I digress…
So how cheap was Seattle on the cheap? Lets break it down:
$19 for a one ticket (sale price) on the Amtrak Cascade line to Seattle –> Like them on Facebook to learn about sales and promotions
$50 for Seattle Mariners tickets –> Could have went for as cheap as $20 but decided to “splurge” Also +$12 on baseball side bets (ie. next pitch will be a strike for $1)
$17 for Seattle Underground Tour –> This was a last minute decision to kill time before bus home but worth the hung over walk.
$28/pp/night accommodations –> Priceline! See this post for tips and tricks on booking.
$15 return trip via Greyhound –> Not too shabby even though the bus driver got lost for 45 min on the way home. Not sure how that happens in the age of GPS and smartphones.
This of course doesn’t include booze and eats but you get the idea. A weekend away can be cheaper than you think and still be packed with good times. So think about that the next time you have a free weekend, the break away from your routine can introduce lasting memories and possible zombie encounters.
For Vancouverites that can mean heading south to enjoy Seattle on the cheap.