Home for the Holidays

The littles and I traveled home for Thanksgiving.  I didn’t want to travel, but my mother insisted and she was footing the bill.  I tried telling her how much I dislike traveling over the holidays unless I am driving, but she didn’t want me to drive 1200 miles with her grandchildren.  I was/am not interested in flying, especially at this time of the year.

So we compromised, we took the train.

Yep. We sure did.

And it was fun.

Most people say they are going to travel by train but they don’t because “time” is a huge factor.  It took 26 hours in travel time, to include a time change.

The savings were huge though compared to flying at Thanksgiving.

On the departure leg we didn’t have a sleeper car so our meals were not included, but on the way home all of our meals were part of our package. Meals for 4…and I had wine with dinner :)

So here is my biggest stressor.  This trip was NOT in my budget.  I gave into pressure from my mother because she paid for the tickets, but I still had some pretty substantial expenses.

  • I have 2 dogs that require boarding or I need a house sitter.
  • The gas for the 1 1/2 hour trip back and forth 4 times to the train station. My oldest drove us up there and then picked us up a week a later.
  • I rented a car when we arrived. I did this through Priceline, but I had to upgrade to a larger vehicle when I arrived at my destination.
  • Gas for said rental car.
  • There was the expense of meals on the way up and all the incidentals during the trip.

These are things a lot people don’t factor into a trip.  My expensives were definitely over $500. Ouch!

I am glad I went for the sentimental value of the trip, but it still hit the savings account.




  1. The incidentals are always the part of our travels that push things beyond budget. Lodging our furry child is a substantial expense, so we’ve sought out neighbors to help watch him. Had we lodged him during our last vacation, it would’ve added an additional $250. Yikes!

    I want to travel by train one day too! Unfortunately, the closest station warrants us getting in the car to drive 1.5 hours. I can’t wait to move further north…or closer to a train station!

    • That was what happened to us…we had to travel to the train station. I had a house sitter/dog sitter, but it still cost money for us. My one dog is elderly. I can’t trust a neighbor to just keep an eye on him at the moment. He needs a little more attention than an occasional wander in unfortunately. Accidents would happen :(

  2. Trains are fun!!!!!:-)

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