Boston on a Budget


It’s no secret that I love to travel. I actually think that it is one of the first things that people gather from getting to know me.

#travelholics back together again ūüĆéūüĆćūüĆŹ

A photo posted by Allison Clearing Preppy’s Name (@preppylogic15) on

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This past weekend I was able to quench my everlasting thirst for travel and visit some of my friends, Michaela and Clara, from when I studied abroad in England. I had been budgeting since my last trip, to Florida, where I visited another study abroad friend, Tess, in April.

I found that an impromptu trip to Boston was completely realistic thanks to an early summer JetBlue flight sale, taking only a carry on bag and personal item, and having a fantastic friend who allowed me to crash on her couch.

These are the realities of being a post-college twenty something, and that is okay.

boston
  1. Price compare in advance and don’t spend more than you¬†absolutely need to on flights.

I booked my roundtrip tickets almost exactly 2 months before my trip. It was a Thursday, but to be completely honest I am not one of those people who think the day of the week matters all that much. My direct flights were just under $100 and I am still pretty proud of that fact.

At the same time that I booked my tickets, I signed up for a True Blue rewards account. When I have traveled in the past I have made an account for SouthWest, but to be completely honest I haven’t really accumulated anything of significance because I have never been loyal to just one airline; I tend to just fly whatever is least expensive. My lack of loyalty may¬†change now that I have found out that I can take surveys at www.pointsforsurveys.com¬†¬†and accumulate free flights through JetBlue. I already have plans in the making for a trip to NYC in the fall and due to my 4,500 points I’ve acquired since June, I may only have to pay one for a one way ticket. That’s $60 or less… CHA CHING!

JetBlue now has baggage options you can pay for when you purchase tickets. It’s still cheaper than American Airlines and Delta, but nothing compares to SouthWest’s 2 free checked bags. With that in mind I bought the 0 bag basic fair through JetBlue, as my trip was only 4-5 days long, and crammed everything I needed into a duffle and tote.

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2. Go on the vacation that fits YOUR lifestyle. Adapt accordingly.

Since I have visited Boston many times before, I decided that I did not want to have the traditional historical visit. I’ve seen Freedom Trail and it is cool. Same thing for the Boston¬†aquarium. But I am a young millennial woman on the hunt for fun cheap Instagram opportunities and delicious food/booze -in case I haven’t made that clear.

And so with that in mind I made 1 goal for each day of my trip.

  • On Saturday I would find a giant booze-shake from Boston Burger Company. ($10)
  • On Sunday I would go on a Boston Harbor boat cruise through Boston Green Cruises, thanks to Living Social -because I’m cheap. ($11)
  • On Monday I would swim in a rooftop pool on top of the Colonnade Hotel near the Prudential Center. ($10)

I accomplished all of my goals with Clara. I spent a total of $300 on vacation, less than one night at the aforementioned hotel that we swam at (which is priced at approximately $450-600 a night).

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3. Get over yourself and take public transportation.

I spent $22 on a 7 day CharlieCard pass, so that I could take the public bus and subway as many times as I wanted. This easily paid for itself, as I know I took both modes of transportation at least 20 times. Individually with a ticket each trip would be $2.75, $2.25 on a Charlie Card. I have spent $22 on Uber rides in the DC metro area.. even more on cabs in NYC.. therefore this is definitely the cheapest form of getting around, besides walking.

4. Don’t eat out every night if you don’t have to.

We made the classic poor man’s¬†pasta dish for dinner on Sunday night: shell pasta, olive oil, garlic and parm cheese. I spent $15 on random breakfast fruits, ingredients for dinner, pre-packaged lunches and non-alcoholic beverages for during my stay. By eliminating the cost of dinner one night, as well as having breakfast options and lunch covered one day, this was definitely a solid investment.

5. Talk to the locals.

On our first in Jamaica Plain, the particular neighborhood Clara resides in, we talked to the bartender about places to go. What tourist traps should we avoid? If you were here for 4 days where would you make it a point to visit? Not only will you get a better feel for the town, but you may also get to witness a fantastic Bostonian AHHHcent.

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I know that I am lucky to be able to explore such amazing places and visit incredible people, but I am a firm believer that luck actually has very little to do with it. Do your research, know your restrictions and take the world on without hesitation.

Th√© de l’apr√®s-midi (otherwise known as afternoon tea)


For those of you that don’t know, two short weeks ago I was visiting Ivory Avenue blogger, Natalie, in Montreal, QC. ¬†My experience traveling outside of the United States has only been to Toronto, ON this past November and it was interesting to see how the other provinces compared. ¬†It’s nice to leave Western New York and see how the other side of the border lives, eh?

canada, canadian flag, afternoon tea

 

My friend Natalie is of English and Canadian descent. ¬†This makes her family and their traditions that much more unique! ¬†One of the most delightful things we did while I visited this past week was have afternoon tea. ¬†I enjoy herbal teas quite a bit and recently felt that I was moving up in the world by purchasing white chocolate peppermint loose leaf tea from Teavana… but nothing compared to the Peach Ginger tea at Madam Clifford’s and Angels Falls tea at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier.

afternoon tea, madam clifford's tea room,

The experience at Madam Clifford’s was very personalized. ¬†It began with picking out your favorite tea cup, among their incredible selection. I enjoyed my meal of tuna-cucumber tea sandwiches immensely. ¬†There were so many delicious treats this past week, it was difficult deciding which to put on instagram.

tea at chateau laurier, afternoon tea

Walking into the Fairmont Chateau Laurier, one passes photos of the famous people that once visited the beautiful hotel. ¬†Both former President Bill Clinton and his wife were among them. ¬†I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was certainly happy that I dressed up. ¬†Natalie and I went to a cute second hand store where I discovered a gray plaid jumper, black turtle neck, pearls, and martini glasses all for under $20! Try to beat that Macklemore.

afternoon tea, fancy tea party

The elegant Canadian Tea started with your choice of tea and in our case Ice Wine (if you desired) and then came the tiers of delicacies.  On the second level were four distinct sandwiches: salmon, cucumber, chicken, and roast beef.  Words could not do this presentation justice.  Next was a blueberry scone and a plain scone.  The table held small dishes of cream (not to be mistaken with cream cheese) and jam.  The final desserts were a maple tart, banana cake, and berries.  It was incredible way to spend the day, from our table we could see parliament.

afternoon tea, strawberries and cream

Returning back to the states I have already determined I need to find a tea-room of some sorts. ¬†I am sure this is more of an English tradition than Canadian, but it was delightful to not have to cross the “pond” to experience it. I spent nearly 10 hours on a bus, but that hasn’t taken away my travel bug. ¬†Last week I went to Boston and enjoyed everything another North Eastern state had to offer. School is back in session on Monday and fully prepared to interrupt my travel schedule though.

eaton center toronto, eaton center, eaton centre, afternoon tea

My view of the Eaton Center in Toronto at dinner, on my way home.

 

All things that glitter.


Hello preps and prep wanna-bees,

It’s yours truly, Allison! Today was a very good day, better than they have been lately. I went to church, and then shopping with a friend. We found many great items, but I didn’t have my typical amount of money due to the Savannah/Atlanta trip, so I had to make things work. Before I tell you about my purchases, (which I will do, no doubt) I figured I should fill you in on my trip to Boston from friday…

We didn’t get to the hotel until 10:45, and the pool closed at 11, so I just hung out in the room for most of the night. In the morning we went to Lasell and I was glammified in a yellow lace dress, pearls, and red lipstick. My mother warned me about appearing intimidating, but I would rather be that than underdone or scummy. Anyways, we went to a few fashion and financial aid meetings, wandered the campus, ate lunch with a professor, and I bought a vera wristlet.

I wanted an epiphany as a result of my trip, but I don’t have one. I like the Victorian houses for dorms at Lasell, and I like POLISHED magazine, as well as the possible internships, but nothing overly impresses me. I don’t feel the feeling I had at Savannah, but I’m worried SCAD was distorted because I was being treated like royalty all trip going to 5 star restaurants and living in a lavish townhouse. Life as a college student won’t be so lovely, I know it.. but a masquerade ball? Palm trees? Marc Jacobs is 4 blocks from my dorm? Boys outside the Cathedral I went to were drenched in Lacoste and Ralph Lauren everything? Not knowing anyone from my town, maybe even New York state? Getting to ride a pink Vespa to class? Mall trips on the weekends? Ralph Lauren mentoring my class? No snow? The Beach? All within a 4 mile radius? A quarter schedule so I can go home -wherever home is then- for 2 months?

If I was reading this post, I would probably just say, go to SCAD then. Why not?

I’ll tell you why not.

If I screw this up.. if I choose SCAD? And SCAD is not what I think it should be.. if its too eclectic and artsy and crappy education wise it’s all on me. My parents haven’t seen the school… they won’t when/if we send a deposit.. and I know they’re routing for Lasell. It’s so far away from home.. it’s so unlike anything I’ve ever had.. what if the mosquitoes eat me to death? I did have quite a problem with them.. I would need to learn to read a map, for sure. I would need to learn how to be Southern.

This scares me.

If I go to Lasell, things are different, but with an undergrad population of approximately 1500, it’s not that intimidating. SCAD is around the 13,000 mark and it’s just completely uncharted territory..

All this college talk is getting me down :(.

Lets change to shopping, besides what clothing/shoe size I’m going wear, it stays pretty consistent. I leave satisfied and with something glittery :).

I bought a neon pink tank with wide cut outs that says “<3” on the front and on the back “U” to wear with a black bandeau for summer… It was way more casual than my typical purchase, but I like it. I bought 2 pairs of JCrew shorts, impulsively of course. In turquoise for the 9 in length and hot pink for the 5. Oh, and it’s going to be an all time high of 50 this week.. so I guess those should go back in a box :P. I bought 2 pairs of shoes as well, glittery black TOMS, wetseal style. And rose covered flats.

     

I’m so good at shopping.. when I have money. I can’t make my decision of where to go to school based on shopping access, but part of me wants to. The impulsive part of me. The part that also wants to sleep past my 8am class tomorrow.

But because of the part of me that is semi-responsible, I’m going to bed now. I’ve done my share of responsible things this weekend, while having fun.. maybe all I need is sleep.

One of the great things I was working on this weekend, was my guest blog entry for Frock Stock. We need more preppy followers guys! And maybe this will help :). Feel free to spread the news, and please check it out March 30th! You can find my entry, as well as many other fashionista’s at frockstock.blogspot.com

Love you!

Allison