#Travel140 Travel Tips
You can save money or time – and sometimes both – by budgeting for breakfast!
What’s the most important meal of the day? Breakfast, of course! It can also have a big impact on your travel budget, so be sure you consider carefully where your breakfast is served. Look for ways to stretch your money, your time, or hopefully, both!
It’s just as important to budget your time as well as your money, and this can save you one…but not always the other.
We love having breakfast at our hotel. It’s super convenient, and can save lots of time. Trouble is, you’re likely to pay hotel restaurant prices for that meal. A simple continental buffet can run $15 per person or more, and that is not a good value, no matter how much time it saves.
Be even more careful of “Bed & Breakfast” rates. Check that against a rate without breakfast, and you may find that breakfast for two ups your room rate by $30 or more. Before opting in for breakfast at your hotel, check the web for prices at nearby restaurants. You can likely eat better for half the price.
On the other hand, some hotels are well known for leaving you well rested AND well fed. Usually, those that cater to business travelers and families will have a good breakfast included. Among those brands regularly cited for their complimentary breakfasts are Embassy Suites and Hampton Inn, both Hilton brands. We’ve always had good experiences at Holiday Inn properties, as well. You can also score a free meal at some hotels when you’re a member of their loyalty program. Some of our best hotel breakfasts have been in the Sheraton Club lounges.
Ironically, the economy and mid-scale hotel chains are more likely to offer a good complimentary breakfast than high-end luxury properties. Just check into the reviews; many define “breakfast included” as little more than coffee and pastries.
Breakfast on the Go
Generally, it’s less expensive to eat somewhere besides your hotel. You’re likely to eat better, too. After all, when was the last time you had a “continental breakfast” of just pastries, yogurt, and maybe some fruit at a bona fide restaurant?
The downside is that you have to find somewhere to go, and that’s not always easy in a city you’re not familiar with. We like to ask the desk agents where they like to meet friends for breakfast, and we never get a bad recommendation. Do it the night before, though, so you can find directions before going to bed.
The hidden bonus in skipping breakfast at the hotel isn’t always the savings, but the chance to get out and experience the city you’re in. That always adds value to any trip.
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We’d love to hear about your experiences! Do you always eat in, or do you like to explore and find your own breakfast? Any hotel or restaurant recommendations? Feel free to share your favorite travel tips, too. We’ll re-post the best tips, so be sure to include your Twitter handle and a link to your blog, if you have one. Or click for more #Travel140!