Springfield, Missouri, is a classic Midwestern town with everything from expansive green spaces to inspiring historic sites. The best part about this destination is that it works with nearly any travel budget. Try these tips for a budget trip to Springfield.
Book Cheap Hotels with Ample Amenities
The right hotel can help you slash your travel budget significantly. Book a room at an amenity-packed location like the Holiday Inn Express and Suites Springfield Medical District, and enjoy a free breakfast that will eliminate this essential meal from your dining budget. Rooms at this hotel also feature microwaves and refrigerators so you can prepare cheap snacks and small meals in the room. Keep an eye out for perks like these when you’re booking in one of these cheap hotels in Springfield so you can snag an affordable room with extra money-saving perks built right in.
Hop on Affordable Transportation
Springfield has an affordable transit system that offers convenient transportation around the city for a fraction of what you’d pay for a rental car or taxi. Fare for the bus is $1.25 per ride or just $3.75 for an unlimited day pass. If you’re in town all week, the seven-day pass is only $13. More than a dozen routes operate on weekdays and Saturdays. Routes are condensed on Sundays and during the evening hours.
You can also save on transportation by looking for an airport hotel like the Courtyard by Marriott Springfield Airport. This hotel offers a complimentary shuttle to and from the airport to simplify your arrival and departure in the city.
Enjoy Free and Low-Cost Attractions
You can fill out your Springfield vacation without taxing your budget by opting for some of the area’s many free or budget-friendly attractions. One of the city’s greatest charms is its abundance of affordable things to enjoy. The Springfield Conservation Nature Center offers 79 acres of woodland, glade, and prairie for visitors to explore. At the visitor center, guests can enjoy a self-guided tour of the exhibits or stop in for special events like story time.
The Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park is free to explore as well. This park features 21 stunning gardens as well as a playground, trails, and arboretum. Guests who prefer indoor attractions can head to the Pythian Castle for a one-hour history tour for less than $8. Ninety-minute ghost tours are held at the castle as well for just $15 a person.
Dine on a Dime
Digging in to a signature taste of Springfield isn’t an expensive affair. Louie’s Drive In is the oldest establishment of its kind in the area, dating to 1949. The food is casual and affordable, and the peanut butter and jelly shake is not to be missed. Flame is a pricey local steakhouse in the evening, but you can snag an amazing deal by stopping into the lounge between 4 and 6 p.m. for a $3.50 steak burger. Pappy’s Place is a local barbecue favorite with massive sandwiches for around $6.
Don’t miss this handy Hipmunk guide for more tips on staying in Springfield on the cheap. Add your own suggestions to the comments below!
Mandi Rogier is a resident of sunny central Florida who regularly contributes to several travel blogs and websites, including Hipmunk. In her free time she enjoys visiting nearby theme parks, taking family road trips, and planning girlfriend getaways.