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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France

    Default lodging for the budget traveller

    First of all :

    -it may be a good idea to order directories by mail or to print them, it'll be practical on the road.

    -To print rebate coupons for motel/hotel rooms (it's the internet version of the guide you can obtain by going to a roadside Visitor's Center).

    -don't forget to pick-up your free motel/hotel rebate coupon guide at each state's visitors center and ask for cheap places, restaurants and stuff. A smile goes a long way with someone who's been there all day answering the same questions over and over.

    -take advantage of any AAA membership, AARP or Govt employee discounts in motels

    -usually the smallest cities have cheaper rates, try to stay in the suburbs instead of the big cities.

    -remain polite while bargaining, being pushy and rude won't give you a better rate and definitly not a better service.

    -always take a look at the room/cabin before paying.

    Here are a few ideas on where to sleep if you're on a budget :


    -motel 6 (usually the cheapest rooms among the big chains):

    -Budget Host Inn : they have cheap room but they're not so many of them.

    -Interstate Inn and 1st Inn (cheap rooms, sometimes not very clean):

    -Mom & Pop Motels : usually roadside motel rooms, frequently old even crappy, relatively clean depending on the owner and the location, kitsch decor but cheap and gives you the opportunity to chat with locals.

    -Red Roof Inn

    -Super 8 motels

    -Days Inn

    -Econo Lodge, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Quality Inn, Rodeway Inn, Comfort Inn

    -Howard Johnson

    -Best Western




    -YMCA/YWCA in big cities sometimes have rooms for travelers

    -University residence (usually during summer)

    -B&B's are a great alternative for motel rooms, but they're usually much more expensive than motel rooms


    -Camprounds and RV Parks :

    -Campgrounds directory

    -The Campground Network :

    -Bureau of Land Management campgrounds (usually between 5-12$) :

    FREE CAMPING/SLEEPING IN THE CAR (in other words if you like adventure):

    List of "free" camping spots

    Tips for finding free places

    -Places less than $10 per night

    -Tips for sleeping in cars

    -Strange places

    -Long term visitors areas

    TRUCK STOPS are havens for travelers in the US : they sometimes rent rooms, or you can just sleep in your car in the parking lot, they have clean showers, cheapest gas, cheap food, souvenirs, camping supplies, maps, private phone cabins, laundromats, 7/24... note : I know Flying J has a frequent fueler program, you can order a frequent fueler card for free that gives you rebate on gas and products, I'm sure other truck stops have that kind of program too. Don't forget to ask for a free directory it's always practical to have it on the road.

    -Flying J

    -TA Travel Centers


    -Pacific Custom Brokers :

    Ok I guess that's enough for one day:-) Have a nice trip and drive safely! Gen:-)
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 03-16-2007 at 11:40 AM. Reason: URL Format

  2. #2

    Default Walmart

    Many Walmarts will let self-contained recreational vehicles park over night in their parking losts. You have to clear it with the manager first, because some cities and a few states don't allow it and the manager will know.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France

    Default Wal-Mart book

    I know someone actually wrote a book about which Wal-Marts allow RV's to spend the night in their parking lot and which don't. I believe you can order it over the internet by going to their website : or just do a search on the net. But its utility is a little doubtful because, of course, like Utahtea said, the best way to know is to ask the manager.

  4. #4
    Carolyn Worl Guest

    Default cheap lodging

    the absolute cheapest lodging I have ever encountered is in Laughlin, Nevada......and I am talking NICE lodging. $25.00 per night in Harrahs, and there were other hotels for $19.00 a night.

    Things nearby that you might like to go to are Las Vegas,
    Death Valley National Park, the Grand Canyon, Oatman and Kingman Arizona, Joshua Tree Forest, Red Rock Canyon and much more. Also, there are lots of ghost towns nearby that can be explored

  5. #5
    Robert B. Mitchell, Sr. Guest

    Default Cheap room for Sr. citizen

    Will be arriving in LAX Dec. 15th. and planning to stay until Jan. 10, 2006. 68 year old male traveling alone with AAA, AARP, Triprewards and Veterans Advantage. Want to stay in the Rose Bowl area.

  6. #6
    fliptophead Guest

    Default CouchSurfing

    Awesome post, thanks for sharing. I wanted to add a few more that I've been using for the last year that have been AWESOME! There are great *free* hospitality accommodation organizations that have been fun for me - not just for the place to stay but for the people I get to meet through them. Here they are: (my favorite)

    I hope other people enjoy them as much as I have!
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 03-16-2007 at 11:44 AM.

  7. #7
    Twinturbostang Guest


    This is great info guys, I am doing a trip starting next week to CA from CT.

    Is there a list of the camp ground that are more of a party type places? Like people in their 20s drinking those types of places?

  8. #8
    rivergirl Guest

    Default CHEAP lodging in TN on Cumberland River $10-18.00nite

    Just stayed at River Retreat Hostel in Charlotte, TN, off hwys 48 or 49, by Cheatham Dam, husband and myself statyed for $28.00 plus tax, it was single beds, but river view, breakfast, pancakes and coffee, comfortable bed, clean, safe, fence around yard and house? It was very nice, I have stayed in dumps and payed 50.00 for the privelidge. Its 18.00 for a single bed, and if you want to throw up a tent in yard with river view its 10.00 with breakfast!
    It was a nice place. I booked at

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default thanks for the field intel!

    Great Tip. Thanks for the post!


  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Bay Area, CA

    Default thanks

    This is too much of good information to digest.
    thanks a looooooooooooot.

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