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aug 17 2016

Never Mind Mardi Gras. This Month New Orleans Is One Big Dinner Party

(Courtesy lweinb/myBudgetTravel)

When it comes to world-class culinary destinations in America, few cities beat New Orleans. From its longstanding iconic temples of dining to contemporary eateries that offer new spins on the city’s traditional fare, the biggest challenge of a visit to the Bayou is choosing where to dine.

But throughout the month of August, restaurants are offering unbeatable prix-fixe meals as part of COOLinary Summer in New Orleans. Some of the city’s –if not the country’s—most acclaimed restaurants are rolling out the red carpet with two- and three-course lunch menus for $20 or less and three-course dinner menus for $39 or less. A few eateries are going all out and offering brunch, too. Among the dozens of restaurants, primarily in the French Quarter and Downtown, are fine-dining stalwarts, like Arnaud’s, Galatoire’s and the renowned Commander’s Palace, as well as plenty of modern locales, like Cafe Adelaide and the Swizzle Stick Bar and Carrollton Market.

apr 21 2016

Tap That App! Ask a Digital Jeeves for (Almost) Anything With HotelTonight's Cool New Feature

HotelTonight San Francisco

The last-minute hotel-booking app HotelTonight has been a longtime favorite of ours here at BT. The genius is in its simplicity: Wait until 12 p.m. for across-the-board price drops the day you want to book a hotel (or 6 p.m. for deeper discounts), then scoop up deals on properties ranging from "Solid" to "High Roller." (HotelTonight says its prices tend to be 18 percent less than Expedia's or Booking.com's.)

dec 18 2015

Where Does Santa Claus Go For His Post-Christmas Vacation?

(Pavel Chernobrivets/Dreamstime.com)

You're not gonna believe this, but I interviewed Santa Claus.

It happened like this: About a month ago I was thinking about how much I dislike traveling around the holidays. Call me Scrooge (who, btw, I did not interview—because he is a fictional character), but I just don't like crowds. If I have my way, I take my family somewhere nice after the holidays. I started thinking about who might be an expert on post-Christmas travel and it hit me: Who works harder at Christmastime—or deserves more of a break afterward—than St. Nick?

oct 12 2015

10 B&Bs You Won't Believe Are Under $200

Auberge on the Vineyard, Cloverdale, California
(Courtesy bedandbreakfast.com)

It's amazing what you can get for less than 200 bucks at a B&B. Along with delicious eats and personable innkeepers, each of these spectacular inns offers private baths, complimentary Wi-Fi, and luxurious perks galore. Plus, they're located near some of America's most popular cities and attractions.

Peter Shields Inn, Cape May, New Jersey

oct 09 2015

Fall Festivals Worth Traveling To

The Mendocino Mushroom, Wine & Beer Festival is a countywide celebration in early November, including mushroom dinners, winemaker dinners, and brewmaster dinners, among other delicious events.

(Courtesy Mendocino Mushroom, Beer & Wine Festival)

Celebrating America’s best food, wine, beer, and music, amazing fall festivals are happening over the next few weeks. Here, a look at some of the best!

NEW YORK CITY WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL happens next weekend, October 15 through 18, with a wide variety of price points from downright indulgent to stylish steals. All proceeds benefitting Food Bank for New York City and No Kid Hungry. Amazing demonstrations and food and wine tastings at NYC’s Piers 92 and 94, with celebs like Giada De Laurentiis, Rachael Ray, Mario Batali, and Emeril Lagasse hosting events.  You have never tasted anything like this concentration of culinary talent all in one place! It’s a foodie convention like no other! We’re especially excited about the “under $100” events, starting at just $20, which include panel discussions and hands-on classes on Italian cooking, making jam, wine-tasting, home-brewing beer, and cocktail mixology.

may 27 2015

#BTRoadTrip: Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to Tallahassee, Florida

The medium is the message between the Faubourg Marigny and Bywater districts in New Orleans.

(Whitney Tressel)

Hop in the passenger's seat on the ultimate road trip! We're posting real-time dispatches as Budget Travel's Photo Editor, Whitney Tressel, journeys across the country using tips from locals as her guide. Prepare for beautiful beaches and parks, amazing local cuisine, and one-of-a-kind experiences you only get when you talk to the real Americans who make this country great.

feb 10 2015

Tips For Taking The Kids To Mardi Gras

Are you ready for Mardi Gras 2015? Parades have been taking place around New Orleans every weekend since Jan. 6th, leading up to the main event Tuesday, Feb. 17th, historically the day before start of the Catholic season of Lent. While most of us may envision wild teenagers and scantily–clad women when the phrase Mardi Gras is mentioned, it is traditionally a family season of celebration. Many New Orleans natives have been known to attend the festivities with the whole family, letting the kids collect beads, toys, and other goodies. Here are a few tips for those of you planning to make this year's event a family affair.

nov 12 2013

Save Big by Traveling During "Shoulder Season"!

Hawaii's Waikiki Beach: Enjoy good deals in February!

(Courtesy Butch25/myBudgetTravel)

If you're planning a winter vacation, you've probably noticed that some of the most beautiful, luxurious spots are also the most crowded and expensive. It's just the laws of supply and demand. But what if I told you there was a "sweet spot" that travel experts call Shoulder Season between the pricy high season and the less-desirable (often rainy and cold) low season? Over the next few months there are a few great opportunities to beat the crowds, enjoy nice weather, and even save some money.

jun 25 2013

Amtrak Expects Summer Ridership to Rise This Year

Glacier National Park is just one of the breathtaking vacation destinations served by Amtrak this summer.

(Courtesy Loco Steve/Flickr)

A reporter recently asked me for some rail travel tips. I told her quite honestly, "You know, I have to admit sometimes train travel is my favorite way to go."

A great train ride can combine the best of road tripping (beautiful sights whizzing by your window, an ever-changing kaleidoscope of images) and flying (comfy seat, the ability to nod off at a moment's notice). Amtrak is reporting that advance ticket sales suggest ridership will be up significantly this July and August compared with last year. Translation? If you're considering taking the train this summer, don't wait too long to make up your mind. With that in mind, I thought I'd take a second to remind you of some of the options Amtrak is offering this summer.

apr 17 2013

Spring Food Festivals You Must Taste to Believe

The Great Smoky Mountains are the setting for the annual Bloomin' Barbecue & Bluegrass food festival, one of our can't-miss food destinations for the month of May.

(Courtesy daveantphoto/myBudgetTravel)

Admit it. The words food and festival make your mouth water.

I know, I know. You're picturing yourself balancing a plate of, say, gulf shrimp with a nice cool glass of local chardonnay. Add a balmy Southern breeze in your hair and you've pretty much got a perfect afternoon. Here, four of our favorite American food festivals coming up in May, served with a heaping side order of affordable hotels.

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