How to do St. Augustine FL in 1 day for under $100

My first time to St. Augustine, FL was for my 20th birthday in 2010. My (now)husband, Dennis and I decided to try to see all of what St. Augustine had to offer for under $100. The first thing we saw when we arrived was the Authentic Old Drug Store which was neat. They sold all sorts of herbal remedies used back in “the day.”

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Next, we went to buy our trolley tickets. With prior research I found out the green and orange trolley is the best for what you get for the cost. The price was $23 a person but I had a buy one get one coupon from Tropicana Rewards. They usually have coupons in the town information booklets also. From there, we hopped on the trolley and took the tour of the town, the driver of the trolley did a great job explaining everything and navigating through the small streets. After the tour of the town we went to a Philly Cheese Steak place to grab some food, for the 2 of us to eat it was only $15. After eating, we were just in time for the beach shuttle to the lighthouse (included in the price of the trolley).

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We got to the lighthouse and decided to climb the 219 stairs to the top. It sounds like a lot but it really wasn’t that bad. When you go, ask for the audio tour recording. There are checkpoints throughout the lighthouse where you can stop and listen to the device which shares some history about the lighthouse. The view from the top was amazing, definitely worth the climb.

With the trolley sticker, the lighthouse will give you $1 off admission which brings it to $16 for 2 people. After the shuttle back to the main part of town we walked to the San Sebastian Winery where we took the tour and learned how they make wine. The tour ends with a wine tasting which would have been great except I was only 20. Then we grabbed the trolley back to St George street which is where all the shops and restaurants are.

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We walked around St George Street checking into the different shops and places to eat. We stopped for a piece of key lime pie ($4) and I got an airbrush tattoo ($4). Then Dennis took me down a side road to show me the love tree. This is a tree that grew inside of another tree and rumor has it that if you kiss your true love under this tree your love will last for 100 years, so far so good.

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The last thing we did was a ghost walk. Again I printed a coupon before I left home for a buy one get one ticket. We did the Ghost Tours of St. Augustine, unfortunately I didn’t catch anything on my camera but it was still a ton of fun. The guide was dressed like a pirate and he was very knowledgeable of the town. There are so many ghost stories around and no matter what question we asked him he had an answer. We both did it for $12.

Total spent – $74 not including 2 bottles of wine from the winery.

8 Tips for a Wedding On A Budget

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My husband and I got married on Monday November 12, 2012. Why on a Monday? It was cheaper and it didn’t really matter what day of the week we had it on. Since we were paying for the wedding and honeymoon ourselves, we did everything we could to cut back on costs. In total we spent $5000 on our wedding, not including the rings, dress or honeymoon. If you or someone you know is planning a wedding and you need to stay within a budget, I have some advice.

The biggest thing to remember: this is your day, it’s going to be beautiful and unique no matter what so just go with what feels right to you and your partner.

8 Tips For A Wedding On A Budget

 

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1. Find a local beautiful place that works with your personalities.

My husband and I love Key West so when we found this gorgeous outdoor venue complete with a tikki bar and beach side fire pit, we knew we hit the jackpot. Since it was a small local venue, it was much cheaper than some grand hall or a golf course.

2.  Have the wedding on a weekday if possible.

I found that most venues and vendors offered cheaper rates on the weekdays. 

3.  Cut back on your guest list.

I know this one is difficult but trust me, it can be and needs to be done. When we first got engaged, I told EVERYONE they were invited and soon had a guest list of over 150. Once we started looking at venues and food, we realized we had to cut back. I narrowed it down to just family and close friends. We ended up with under 50. The venue was cheaper as well as the total cost of food and drinks.

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4.  Make the decor yourselves and enlist help.

Every chance I got, I was with my friends and family creating the centerpieces or stuffing the stockings (Christmas theme) It was much cheaper than buying predone decorations. We also decorated the arch we stood under during the ceremony with dollar tree ribbon and glittered letters.

5.  Forgo the photographer.

Nowadays everyone has amazing cameras on their phones, just ask everyone to take as many photos as they can and send them all to you after the wedding. Pinterest has tons of ideas for cute picture requests you can leave on the tables. This way the guests can be involved and help capture candid photos. We also ask a couple people with video recorders to bring them and we set them up in the isle to capture the whole ceremony.

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6.  Find friends or family that have special skills or equipment.

I am lucky that my dad worked for an amusement park and had professional sound equipment. He brought it all to the reception, hooked it up and we plugged our phone in to play our wedding playlist we made. I also have a friend who is a cake decorator. She made our little cake to cut and we got a big sheet cake from publix for the guests.

7.  BYOB

We hired a bartending service that would just come serve the alcohol that we brought. Find out what they supply then you bring the rest. We took a survey from our guests to find out what the majority would be drinking and stocked up on that. We also created our own specialty cocktail that we had the bartender serve.

8.  Utilize your time in a way that suits you.

The package we got included 4 hours of space usage. Since neither of us are very religious, we had a very quick, maybe 15 minute ceremony then spent the rest of the time dancing and celebrating with friends.