Right now. With a baby. And a sickness. And a wife ;)
For those non-pf bloggers out there, FINCON is our yearly financial blogger conference – this time in St. Louis – put together by fellow sexy blogger, PT, from PT Money. People literally come from around the world to attend this, and it’s pretty much the best place ever for finance nerds to let loose and have fun. If you can believe it, we actually dance and drink and stay up past our bed times the whole time! Haha… we’re ballers.
I know most of you could care less about the blogging stuff, though, so I’ll leave my turned-on’ness at that. What you WILL probably be interested in, however, is the costs and how the hell we’re going to make it through this adventure alive. (Did I tell you we were bringing the
baby toddler along?)
Here are the details:
Driving: We’re getting a rental car (SUV) and heading out over 800 miles one way, and then turning around a few days later and doing it all over again (and hopefully not while hungover! (Good luck with that, self)). Plane tickets for three was going to cost over $1,200 if we got lucky ($800 at the cheapest IF we didn’t get the baby a seat – which I hear can go 50/50 in the department of making it through with any morsels of sanity left?), so we decided to make an adventure of it and “see what happens.”
Switching to a rental care will cost us around $500 in total, after all gas and tax/etc. But if we need to break the trip into two parts each way, then it’s more like $700 total for extra hotel rooms. Which then means we might as well have just bought the plane tickets!! Haha… so wish us luck we can pull each route off in one full – hard – day.
Btw, we’re pulling the “Enterprise” trick too again and trying to pay less for an upgraded car (approximately $50-$100 less). The way it goes is you always book one level down from the line of cars you REALLY want, and then when you get there you graciously accept their free upgrade :) I’m about 4 out of 5 on this right now, so I’m pretty confident it’ll work this morning too. With the only downside being if it *doesn’t*, we’re stuck with what we ordered (base level SUV). So always have to weigh the risks when shooting for this ;)
Hotel: I’ll be staying at the conference hotel all weekend, while the wife and baby stay with a cousin out in St Louis. For anyone who does conferences, you know you have to be on point 24/7 and network your ass off the entire time, so unfort. I won’t be able to spend quality time w/ the gang while there (but I’ll be sneaking in the little guy to some events to show him off, he he…)
This hotel will cost $140 a night including all taxes, and I’ll be staying there 4 nights and sharing it with another blogger friend splitting it 50/50. So my total hotel costs will be around $280.
SO, total costs of either $800 or $1,000 depending on extra hotel situation. For almost an entire week in St. Louis having fun and talking business. The other perk to all this? I CAN WRITE IT ALL OFF :) So really, what’s that – $500/$600 in true costs? Not too bad at all…
The potential problems:
- The toddler doesn’t do the car ride AT. ALL. And we’re stuck in the middle of the country stranded at whits end. And then I never make it to the conference and I bitch and moan the entire ride home. Likeliness of this happening: 2% He’s gotta fall asleep *some time* right? ;)
- The *wife* doesn’t do the car ride AT. ALL. She’s always down for a road trip (in fact, this was her idea!), but as luck would have it she just came down with a sickness last night :( Hopefully it’s just a 24 hour thing, but regardless we’ll all be in a car for who knows how many hours all day today, so it’s definitely a concern. Likeliness of us needing to turn around because of this: 15%. Likeliness of us all getting sick: 99%.
- We can’t make it there, or back, in one full day of driving (roughly 14 hours with NO stops – HAH!), and then have to pay for 2 extra hotel nights AND possibly make it late to the start of the conference tomorrow. Likeliness of this happening: 50%. At least for the first part…
- Something bad happens to the car and we’re stranded that way… Not putting likeliness of that happening here cuz I don’t want to jinx it!!!
On the positive side, here’s a bunch of awesome stuff that could happen with this :)
- The toddler gets used to doing road trips and we do more and more of them in the future! He did pretty well in our last – and only – one, back in December when we headed out to Durham and Wilmington for new home shopping, so that’s encouraging.
- The wife magically gets better and there’s nothing to worry about at all.
- We make it there, and back, in one major journey and save both money and time. Times two.
- We have a blast and it’s fun family time together!
I’m betting my money on the latter possibilities, mainly because I have to, haha… The idea of this turning into a nightmare and/or missing out on the conference altogether is just too much to bare. ;) This is one of my favorite times of the year!!
So that’s what I’ll be doing for the rest of the week. Shaking hands and saving money. You?
What is the farthest you’ve ever gone with a baby in the car? WHAT TIPS DO YOU HAVE??? I’ll already be on the road once you see this so it’s too late to change my mind back to flying – haha – but I’ll have plenty of time to read any advice you may have and see if it works ;) Drop ’em in the comments and hook a brotha up!
I’ll see you back here in a bit… Pray for us.
PS: I’ve lined up some sexy posts while I’m away, so you won’t even notice I’m gone. Feel free to drop comments/questions as normal though, and I’ll still hit ya back as I can when I’m online… For faster results, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.
[Photo cred: garbyal]