How to Save Money On Food When Traveling to Chicago – or anywhere for that matter

So now that we are planning to go to Chicago this fall I started thinking about how we will save money on food on our trip. So I figured I would rack my brain and start jotting them all down for you!

  • When headed on a road trip, stock a cooler with some homemade sandwiches, chips, bottles of water, and snacks. Just make sure when packing it you put it in a place that you can easily get in and out of it.  This will not only save you money, but also will save in time. You won’t have to make as many stops and eating inside restaurants can really take some time.
  • If you want to splurge and eat out then do so at lunchtime instead of dinner time. So many times you can get the same meals at a fraction of the cost.
  • Check your hotel for free breakfast. Many hotels provide a free continental breakfast, made sure you grab yourself some to stock up on that fuel. Try eating something that will stick with you. A choice I always go for if they offer it is oatmeal. I feel satisfied for hours.
  • Try eating earlier and take advantage of early bird specials. On any given day of the year most restaurants will run early bird specials. This will help you save a few bucks.
  • Have a picnic. Either pack a lunch or check out the local farmer’s market and grab a cheap lunch on a country road or at a local park.

Here are some breakfast idea if you don’t have a refrigerator.

  • Instant Oatmeal
  • Bread/Bagels and peanut butter
  • Granola
  • Breakfast bars
  • Cereal


  • Fruit, fruit leather, and fruit snacks
  • Rice cakes and peanut butter
  • Granola bars
  • Pretzels
  • Trail mix


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