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The Travel Plan

I realized I never fully explained why I’m skipping over to the other side of the pond in just 18 days (WHOA! EIGHTEEN days?). A long, long, long time ago—four years ago to be exact—I studied abroad in Bournemouth, England, for a year and met some amazing girls. Well, one of the girls is getting married and she invited me to watch her say, “I do.” I’m so anxious to see if there are any differences between an American wedding and one in Britain, and of course I’m excited to see my friends again!

I hate that I don’t have many photos of my time out there (I was there to study, people!), but here are a couple I scrounged up:

Katie, the bride-to-be, is the closest one on the right!

Me, Katie, and Lucy, who got married last year!

My plan is to fly into London:

And then head down to Bournemouth, where I’ll stay with some friends for a few days (don’t be fooled by the blue sky and clear water, these were shot on the one clear day I was out there; it was gloomy the majority of my time out there):

Then I’m going up north to Wales for the wedding:
And then everything else is up in the air. I’ll most likely spend several days in London at a hostel my brother and I stayed at before, and I’ll break up my time in the city by going to Stratford-Upon-Avon to see Shakespeare’s hometown and hopefully see a show. The problem is that the B&B I wanted to stay at just booked for the days I wanted to visit, so I need to confirm that before I can get the rest of the trip settled.

I’m really excited about going back to the United Kingdom, because I had a fantastic time out there. But the part that bums me out is how much it’s going to cost, so here are my ideas to cut back on my spending:

*Staying at hostels
*Getting a “child” pass for the Tube in London
*Picking the earliest – and cheapest – train/bus tickets despite how early they leave
*Taking food with me: granola bars, microwavable Healthy Choice pasta meals, Easy Mac, etc.
*If I decide to see a show I’ll get it from the 1/2 off places
*Taking advantage of all the free museums in England

If you have any other ideas I’m all ears! I’m also going to attempt to pack everything for 15 days (including a dress and heels for the wedding) in just a carry-on sized suitcase and possibly a duffel bag; I want something I can easily travel around with that won’t be too big or too heavy.

So that, in a nutshell, is what I’ll be up to in less than three weeks. And if you have any money-saving tips, let me know!

Oh! And a P.S., what do you think about this dress for the wedding with a jacket/blazer over it? Is it too informal? I wanted something that I would definitely wear again and that would travel well, but now I’m second guessing my purchase.


  1. Hey…the FRG stands for Family Readiness Group. Every company (not sure if its called a company in the AF, but just think of it as your husbands group) has one. They are made up of the spouses of the soldiers and they are supposed to be key during deployments, since they have meetings to keep you updated and all that. Also they do bake sales and fundraisers, etc. Some people have great experiences with this and others don't…its a toss up and many times it turns into a big gossip circle. So stay away from that part of it!

  2. I'm so excited for you! I can't believe how soon you go. I'm just a little jealous. 🙂

    You have some great money saving ideas! It is so expensive there.

    I love the dress and I think with a blazer over it, it will be perfect. It looks quite short in the picture but how long is it in "real life"?

    I love British weddings! If I could convince all my family to fly over that's where I'd tie the knot in some old castle!

  3. What a neat trip! I don't think I could travel by myself, but I envy you for being able to do so. I hope you have a great time!

  4. I hope you have fun on your trip, but a small warning. The authorities on the tube have been much more aggressive in checking to see that people have the correct ticket, so you might want to buy an adult pass. I live in London and have seen people get busted at least 3 or 4 times in a month. Getting busted would be way more expensive than just buying an adult pass. I'm not judging just giving you a heads up. 🙂

  5. Ummmm…isn't it illegal for an adult to use a child tube pass? Not cool. It's ok to save money, but that is taking it too far.

  6. I'll agree with the first anonymous, the second one was just rude. I would be careful with getting the child pass. It could get you in trouble and that wouldn't be any fun on vacation! Add in the fact that you are a mil spouse, and that info can go back to commanders and such. Might not be worth it.

  7. Thanks for your thoughts – except for the 2nd anonymous. Those were just ideas I had, so clearly I can still tweak my thoughts since they're just ideas 🙂 I'll be a law abiding citizen and buy a full adult pass.

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