Palm Springs

My Best Friend (BF) has invited me to Palm Springs. This is a big deal. 

I’ve never been anywhere. I’ve never left Alberta/BC – the two western provinces of Canada. I don’t have a passport. I don’t have any savings for travel. I so so so want to spend some quality time with her. BF lives ohhh…about an 11 hour drive from me – so we don’t get to see each other as often as we like. 

So what to do. 
  1. Step one – make sure I can get the time off work 
  2. Step two – get a passport 
  3. Step three – figure out the money 
  • I've sent an e-mail to my boss (she is out of town for a couple of days) asking about the time off – there are two other people taking time off in April, so we’ll see how that goes. 
  • I’m going to get my passport photo taken early this week and then go about filling in the application forms and what not (I've now done this since I wrote the original post)
  • The Money. Oi! The Money. 
I checked on WestJet and if I CAN'T get any seat sales, flights will be about $1,000. Lodging would be free b/c BF's parents have a place that we can stay at - so that would be amazing.  I have absolutely no clue how much to budget for food, fund & beer.  Can anyone help guesstimate that?  I'm thinking anywhere from $500-$750.

I have $385 in my clothing fund which I would be okay to use for the trip - but the rest I'm not so sure about. BF worries that if I'm always planning on doing things like traveling "later" then I'll never wind up doing it.....

what if later never comes?


  1. AirCanada is having specials right now "to keep the excitement of the Olympics going". Have you tried them? You have to buy before March 9th though. =/

    Another possibility is checking Travelzoo.ca. I find that they have awesome deals.

    Good luck with the research.

  2. That sounds like fun!! And you're right - what if later never comes? I think you're being smart about it. It's all about not going into debt for anything. If you can budget for it and afford it - then by all means!!

    I really hope you don't get any discouragement from readers. Because I know a lot of people frown at the idea of traveling (or doing anything else BUT paying off debt) when you have debt.

    Happy planning! :)

  3. Palm Springs, CA, I assume from the photo? (There is one in florida as well)

    I was there for just 2 nights earlier this year (about a 2 hr drive from where I am) and it was LOVELY. :)

    I hope it all works out!

  4. I think you have to take these opportunities while you can... provided they don't lead to more debt. We all (bloggers I mean) get so blinded by saving that I think we let fun things slip by because they are too expensive. Do what makes you happy... within reason of course!

  5. WestJet was having a big sale just recently - like, earlier this week - I don't know what the prices were like to Palm Springs but the prices to LA and SF were good, perhaps you could get there and then get a small plane out to Palm Springs?

    If you are staying at BF's parents' house, you can go to a grocery store and stay in for breakfast and a couple of dinners, that could keep costs down.

    And what is there to do for fun? Can you price out some of it now?

    Good luck, I hope you get to go - travelling is awesome.

  6. You should do it. And if you have access to a vehicle then I would totally recommend making the short two hour drive to San Diego for a weekend. I'd let you take me out to lunch if you did :)

  7. @ Asian Pear - Best Friend said there were some good ones on, but I am hesitant to book anything before getting my passport sorted out.

    @ Frugal & me in millions - thanks for the encouragement!

    @ Stacking Pennies - I had no idea there was more then one Palm Springs.... I just checked it's the CA one (laughing at myself)

    @ seen on flicker - that's a good idea!! I'll check out non-direct flights too.

    @ Punch - I'll keep that in mind - what a kind offer for me to take you out for lunch ;)

  8. I really hope you can work this out!

  9. I definitely think you can find better airfare deals. $1,000 from Canada to the U.S. is way too high. If you're going to Palm Springs though, you might as well head to Los Angeles.

    And sorry to be the one who throws in a bit of discouragement. I've just been reading way too many posts that justify travel at all costs. I love traveling but I saved up and you can, too. Too many people do it on someone else's timeline. Just because they can afford it doesn't mean you can. I'm sure you can figure it out but don't rack up debt for one trip at the expense of future travel opportunities. I'm older and traveled 3x as much as friends who took the "once in a lifetime" advice and then couldn't afford to travel again. If you love traveling, you'll find ways to do it.

  10. I hope you are able to take the time off work! It sounds like it would be a lot of fun, and having a place to stay is bonus! That will save a lot. Hope everything works out for you!

  11. Re: airfare

    You may already know about these websites, but in case you don't ... try:


    (Don't forget taxes are to be added into the price later. These sites' prices look SUPER low, but do come up a bit when taxes are factored in. BUT, their fares are STILL lower than what the airlines' websites would quote and charge).

    I've used Air Gorilla before and had no problems.

  12. You might be able to get a flight to San Diego, too, and as was mentioned above, the drive to Palm Springs from there is not too bad. (I was in San Diego in August, it was lovely, lots to see and do there.)

    Yay for vacation planning! :)

  13. I definitely agree with me in millions - you gotta take opportunities when you can, especially with old friends you don't get to see often. Hope you can get the time off, and a good flight package!


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