Lifestyle

10 Tips to Save on Your Babymoon

Print Friendly and PDF

One very pregnant lady, a convertible sports car and the Pacific Highway. Weeks before our little one joined us earthside, my husband and I took an epic babymoon. From San Francisco to Seattle, our West Coast road trip spanned ten days and 800 miles -- and only cost $2,500!

Let’s face it. Not everyone has the budget to go big on their babymoon. That’s okay. You don’t need to go to Bali to make incredible memories with your partner. You can have an amazing babymoon on the other side of the country or upstate, at a price point that works for you. What’s most important is that you do it, because trust me: once your tiny one is in your arms, it’ll be a while before date night -- or conversations that don’t center around the consistency of baby poop -- happens again.

FEATURED VIDEO

To help get you hit the road, here are some of our tried and true tricks to help you save big, because after all: you have a baby on the way!

Saving on flights. If you don’t have a specific destination in mind, one of my favorite tricks for saving money is Google flights. Type in your dates and departure airport and Google will show you all the places you can go, by price. You can even set your maximum ticket fare, so you don’t get FOMO when you realize Tahiti is just out of budget.

Hotel alternatives. AirBnb, Homeaway and VRBO are great ways to feel like a local on your trip, and save some cash. Four star hotels in Portland are upward of $250. On our trip instead, we stayed in the most beautifully designed studio apartment for $92/night. The bathroom had heated floors and a large shower (perfect for big baby bellies), and the kitchenette helped us save even more by eating breakfast in. Plus, our hosts were kind enough to tell us where the best local latte was. Score!

Affordable five star hotels. If you’d rather feel glamorous in a five star hotel, I feel ya. When you’re in the mood for luxury on a budget, Priceline’s Name Your Own Price function is the way to go. A lot of people are nervous to try this because you don’t know what hotel you’re booking, but here’s the secret: Priceline will show you the area the hotel is in on the map and let you choose how many stars you want. Select five stars, then in another tab, Google “five star hotels in Palm Springs” and select map view. Compare the maps and you can narrow it down to two or three hotels that you might be bidding on.

Stay with a friend. Want a great getaway, but don’t want to shell out the cash for the Intercontinental Hotel or a fancy AirBnb? Think about friends or family members you have in great cities! A sister in Berkeley, a cousin in New Orleans. Maybe your college roommate has a guestroom at her place in Miami. You’ll have fun reconnecting and save major funds you can redirect to more important things, like that fancy chef’s tasting menu or a prenatal spa day.

Costco or Sam’s Club perks. These membership stores can save you major cash on vehicle rentals. We used the Costco website to book a Jeep Wrangler for an upcoming trip to Hawaii for, get this, less than $500 for 8 days! The cheapest we could find on other sites was than $800+. Who doesn’t want a Jeep in Hawaii?!

Credit card perks. Book with your credit card, not your debit! Many cards, like Amex or branded Visas, have mad perks like points that give you cash back or free checked bags (if you have the United Visa). I shop exclusively with my Wells Fargo credit card because of the cash back incentive. And if your credit card comes with concierge service, absolutely use it. You can ask the concierge to email you flight / hotel / rental vehicle quotes so you can compare cost of different locations.

All inclusive getaways. If you really want to be pampered, consider an all inclusive getaway. Resorts like Club Med keep it really simple by letting you know exactly how much you’re going to spend -- food included! Though you’d have to spring for your own ticket, you could stay in the Maldives for as little as $192/night.

Staying local. Maybe close to home is more your style, especially if you’re in the third trimester or just a little nervous to be away from your own physicians. You’ll save major by not renting a car or splurging on airfare, but you can save even more by booking your hotel last minute. If you can handle the uncertainty, Forbes suggests three new apps to help you book killer deals last minute: HotelTonight, HotelQuickly and One Night.

Cheap eats. A room or house with a kitchen lets you save by cooking in a few times. Most pregnant mamas need to eat the second they wake up in the morning, anyway -- might as well stock the fridge! Another way to save on food is by using the dollar sign filter on Yelp. If you know you need to watch your spending, select $$ before you hit search so you won’t be tempted by all those Michelin star dining experiences. And, this has nothing to do with money but I’d be remiss if I didn’t share my favorite travel tip: Reddit. Search best restaurants in whatever town you’re travelling to on Reddit and chances are your mind will be blown. In fact, search it for your own neighborhood right now and you just might find your new favorite hole-in-the-wall.

Being friendly. Okay, this might sound silly, but just be friendly to people! When we started our babymoon road trip in San Francisco, I mentioned to the woman at the rental car desk how excited I was to see the Redwood National Park. In addition to congratulating me on my growing bump, she upgraded us to a convertible for free because, “you have to see the redwoods with the top down!” Sometimes it totally pays to put your phone in your pocket and just chat with people.

If you’re looking for a little inspiration for a West Coast road trip of your own, here’s more about where we stayed and what we ate!

Photography by Hanna Nakano.

The very best of Motherly — delivered when you need it most.
Subscribe for inspiration, empowering articles and expert tips to rock your best #momlife.

It's time to go shopping for your little ones mama. Not long ago we shared the super sale on Hunter boots for us moms, and now the super colorful and water proof boots are on sale for kids! Perfect timing as Spring is approaching and there will be a lot of puddle jumping in our futures.

The sale is up to 50% off in select styles, but in all the colors of the rainbow! We don't know how long the sale will last so act fast because some sizes are already on low stock!


Here are our favorite styles to shop from the sale:

The original grab handle boot in light blue

Original Kids First Classic Grab Handle

Originally $55, the original Grab Handle boot is 50% off right now.

$28

The classic gloss boot in blue

Original Kids First Classic Gloss Rain

Originally $55, the original Classic Gloss boot is 40% off right now.

$33

Chelsea boot in yellow 

Original Big Kids' Gloss Chelsea Boots

Originally $75, the Chelsea boot is 40% off right now.

$45

The original grab handle boot in pink

Original Kids First Classic Grab Handle

Originally $55, the original Grab Handle boot is 40% off right now.

$33

The classic gloss boot in yellow

Originally $55, the original Classic Gloss boot is 40% off right now.

$33

The camo boots

Original Little Kids Storm Camo Rain Boots

Originally $75, the camo boot is 50% off right now.

$35

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

Jessica Simpson's life seems perfect. She has three beautiful kids, a wildly successful career, a seemingly solid marriage...she has it all, at least as far as we can see. But recent revelations prove that no one really knows what anyone else is secretly dealing with—and Jessica, by her own admission, has been struggling with alcohol issues.

The singer-turned-business-woman recently sat down with TODAY's Hoda Kotb, and it will air on NBC's TODAY Wednesday morning.

"I had started a spiral and I couldn't catch up with myself…and that was with alcohol," Jessica explained. "I would say it openly to everyone. 'I know. I know, I'll stop soon. I'll cut back'," Jessica continued when asked if she realized things were getting out of control. "For me to cut back, like I'm an all or nothing girl, and so I didn't know it was a problem until it was...I completely didn't recognize myself…I always had a glitter cup. It was always filled to the rim with alcohol."

FEATURED VIDEO

She's hardly alone. The rise of #winemom phenomenon is well documented and many parents struggle with substance abuse problems. But Simpson's story proves there is a way to get your life back.

Simpson quit drinking in 2017 after she found herself unable to get her kids ready for a Halloween party. She says she'd started drinking before 7:30 in the morning, before accompanying her husband, Eric Johnson, to a school assembly for their oldest daughter. Later that night she was unable to get her kids dressed in their Halloween costumes. The next morning she was so ashamed. Feeling like she had failed her kids she slept until they left the house, then got up and drank some more.

That episode was her tipping point. She quit drinking (as did her husband, Eric Johnson, who supports her in her sobriety.)



As parents, we know how overwhelming the demands can be...and how easy it is to sink into habits that don't ultimately serve us well. For Jessica, the way to heal was to sever her relationship with alcohol.

"I had to give [drinking] up," Jessica said. "I'm not going to miss another day. I'm not going to miss another Halloween. I'm not going to miss another Christmas. I'm going to be present."

News

Babies come with a lot of stuff. And when you're out and about, a roomy, comfy diaper bag is the place for everything you need to be prepared for whatever the day throws your way. But is a cute, trendy diaper bag that doesn't scream, well... DIAPER BAG, too much to ask? It's not, mamas.

We've rounded up our favorite diaper bags that don't actually look like diaper bags, but instead like the cute, super stylish bags you might have carried before the days of finding crushed up puffs at the bottom of your purse.

These bags prove you can get the job done, mama—and look darn good while doing it.

Freshly Picked City Pack

Freshly Picked City Pack

This simple, modern backpack can easily take you from a day at work to dinner with the kiddos. We love the hardware details, the lightweight design, and the hidden back pocket.

$150

Vogshow Waterproof Bag

Vogshow Waterproof Diaper Bag

A sleek look, plus a padded laptop compartment, anti-theft and insulated pockets and magnetic buttons instead of zippers. 🙌

$34.99

Skip Hop Travel Bag

Skip Hop Travel Bag

With a large zippered main compartment, there's plenty of room to keep all of the things. We love the adjustable straps—you can wear as a backpack, cross-body, messenger bag, or attach to the stroller.

$99.99

Companion Quilted Backpack

companion quilted backpack diaper bag

Are you off to sit on the beach for a few hours, or taking your toddlers to the zoo? No one will be the wiser, mamas. We love the quilted look, padded straps, and roomy interior.

$178

Mommore Diaper Backpack

Mommore Diaper Backpack

With a water resistant exterior, wet clothes pocket and a main compartment that completely opens up, you'll love having this to tote around.

$34.99

JJ Cole Brookmont

JJ Cole Cognac Diaper Bag

As stunning as it is functional. It has 15 pockets and a removable liner on the inside so you can easily clean up messes in no time.

$99.99

Little Unicorn Boardwalk Tote

If you're looking to keep things simple + stylish, mamas, this is the bag for you. It's versatile, functional, and will get tons of use well past the diaper days.

$69.95

Presidio Vegan Leather Diaper Tote

Presidio Vegan Leather Diaper Tote

This stunning tote would make the perfect on-the-go bag. It comes with a changing page and a couple pockets on the inside to keep everything organized. Don't forget to personalize it!

$99

Ticent Tote

Ticent Diaper Bag

With nearly 500 reviews, this one has incredible ratings. It offers multiple pockets, including an insulated one for snacks or bottles. The waterproof cotton material is ideal for those inevitable spills.

$30.99

Fawn Design Original

Stylish and versatile, this bag can be worn as a cross body or as a backpack. It's roomy without being bulky, and has a total of 10 pockets for awesome storage.

$159.99

Skip Hop Greenwich Backpack

No one would ever know this bag is packed full of baby's items. 😉

$69.99

Rosie Pope Highbury Hill

Highbury Hill Diaper Backpack

If you're looking to up your style, this chic backpack will help you get there. Lots of inner pockets and zippered compartments make it simple to organize your stuff, and the top flap and wide opening make for quick + easy accessibility.

$159.99

Babymel Robyn

Babymel Robyn Diaper Backpack

We love everything about this effortlessly stylish faux leather backpack. It's easy to wipe down, converts to a cross body bag, and even comes with a changing pad and drawstring bottle holder.

$90

Petunia Pickle Bottom Pathway

Petunia Pickle Bottom Diaper Tote

This two-tone canvas bag could not be prettier. We love that it easily stands upright when set down, and that it's super functional as a diaper bag yet super stylish as an everyday purse.

$159

Skip Hop Duo

Skip Hop Duo Diaper Bag

The timeless stripes on this 11-pocket bag means it will never go out of style, and the durable cotton canvas means it will stand up to years of use.

$70

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

Frustrations and emotions were at an all time high for both us. I was worried that my lack of patience would get the best of me, leaving her feeling let down and frustrated with me on her new journey of becoming a “big girl." And selfishly, I was tired of washing wet underwear. For her part, my daughter was tired of being asked for the hundredth time if she needed to use the potty.

We both were feeling a little defeated in this new adventure.

I have found too often as a mother that I expect my child to respond new things, like to potty training, as fast and as close to the last blog post, book or opinion I heard or read. What I have learned is that no two children are alike and the moment I release my expectations for where mine should or should not be, we are both brought back to peace and patience.

FEATURED VIDEO

So maybe a break was all we needed to start fresh the next day. We headed to our favorite spot by the lake and had a picnic. My daughter munched on popcorn and chatted away about the weather and pinecones, and listened for the sounds of helicopters—which you hear quite often living on an aviation military base.

Sometimes in the daily struggles of motherhood I have noticed that I can forget who I am and the strength we possess as mothers. It may not come easily at first, but I grow with each new day. Even potty training—this mundane human activity that is emotional and (quite literally) messy, teaches me much about the meaning and purpose of motherhood.

Potty training has taught me a huge lesson on patience. Patience to be present, to pay attention to what is right in front of me. To be encouraging, to not rush the process, to not place expectations on timing or play the comparison game we often play as mothers.

Patience is needed in every area of parenting and potty training is just one way where we can see as parents where our patience is wearing thin.

I have found that it's when I come from a place of patience and presence that I can then glean wisdom from those messy, mundane, time-consuming tasks of potty training, and find that the waiting, sitting and hours of time spent in the bathroom gives me an opportunity to be present in my child's world.

Whether it be the grocery line, a traffic jam, or cleaning up wet bedding, I learn the art and joy in the small and big moments in motherhood. Giving our children space to fail and try it again as many times as it takes encourages them that they too can cultivate the gift of patience in there own tiny lives.

My daughter speaks to me everyday, inviting growth that sometimes feels really hard and frustrating, she provokes patience to be felt and sensed through every minute of the day. And for this I am grateful. Because to truly live and be present in my child's world means “I learn from her, and she learns from me." Even in potty training.

Our children have so much to offer to who we are as individuals and they have so much to teach us. In fact, I have come to live for these exhausting, beautiful, and downright messy moments in time. When I push myself to embrace them, rather than just find them frustrating, I stretch and grow and evolve. I become the mother I hope to be.

And to you mama, whether in the midst of sleepless newborn nights or toddler tornados or the midst of potty training, may you find strength as a mother, as a wife, and as a person to let go of any expectations or judgements you place upon yourself.

May love and gratitude fill our hearts and peace be with all of us on the journey that motherhood is.

Life
Motherly provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. This site does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.Your use of the site indicates your agreement to be bound by our  Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Information on our advertising guidelines can be found here.