Spring Break Ideas for Students on a Budget

If you, like almost every other student with limits to their bank accounts, are having trouble finding affordable trip ideas for spring break, look no further. From personal experience, roommates, and a little bit of research, I listed three spring break trip ideas almost anyone with a few dollars to spare can afford.

  1. Utah

Utah is a beautiful state, full of rock formations, deserts, and a rich culture and museum lift full of Native American history, Mormon practices, and even cowboys! The main attractions include Zion National Park, Arches National Park, as well as the other three national parks Utah is home to. Zion is full of aesthetic archways, untouched canyons, and hiking trails available to everyone!

The drive time to Zion from Manhattan, KS is a little over 16 and a half hours. Assuming a group of travelers stopped halfway to spend the night somewhere, likely in Colorado, that makes the total cost of arriving in Zion around $575, if the cost of staying in a hotel/motel is $150 and the travelers fill their gas tanks four full times on their trip. Since most students travel in groups of four or more, this cuts the cost down to $288 roundtrip per person, excluding money spent while in Utah. All in all, the trip becomes frugal if you’re willing to budget your money.

  1. Chicago, IL

I know what you’re thinking: Chicago isn’t affordable! For the most part, you are correct, with inner city prices and plane tickets costing an arm and a leg. The direct train ride from Kansas City, KS to Chicago, though, is a mere $134 roundtrip per person–cheaper than Utah’s travel costs! Once you arrive in Chicago, the best attractions like Millenium Park, Wrigley Field, and The Empty Bottle are all affordable options, either with completely free entry or ticket prices between $20 and $40. If you really want to save some money, spend your days walking around the city or taking the L-train, and bring your own food for dinner to cook in an Airbnb–just make sure to try Lou Malnati’s pizza at least once during your trip.

  1. Galveston, TX

If you’re looking for a more beachy vibe, Galveston is a great start. From Manhattan, KS to Galveston, TX, the drive is four hours shorter than driving to Zion National Park. Galveston has boardwalks, plenty of Airbnb’s, and enough beaches for you and your friends to spend your days in the sun. The beaches sit on the Gulf, so the waves are tame and the weather is warmer than Kansas, and trolleys are touring Galveston all day, every day. A Victorian-era mansion, Bishop’s Palace, is a great attraction with affordable entry costs, and tour the tree sculptures made after Hurricane Ike with your friends, where road maps are provided.

Good luck on your spring break travels, and if you’re like me and love staying at home where your parents cook for you, then save some money and go say hi to your mom–she’ll love you for it.

Manhappenin' Magazine is Kansas State University's student-created lifestyle magazine.


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