Ten Financial Observations from My 50th Birthday Road Trip
Eileen St. Pierre, The Everyday Financial Planner
My husband and I just returned from one of our road trips – 10 states in 25 days. For my 50th birthday, I wanted to see where Lewis & Clark ended their journey (I have never been to the Northwest) and visit some national parks. I thought I would share with you a few financial observations we made along the way.
- You have no choice – you must get full service gas in Oregon (this is also true in New Jersey). State law does not allow customers to touch the gas pumps.
- We saw more foreigners at the national parks we visited than Americans. We made this same observation several years ago when we visited the Grand Canyon.
- If you put a convenience store in the middle of nowhere, people will find it.
- Hotels really need to have more than one washing machine and dryer available, especially if they are frequented by foreign tour groups.
- In-N-Out Burger always has a crowd, but no one was at the McDonald’s across the street.
- It’s too hot in Death Valley to have a park ranger man the payment booth so they have self-service kiosks set up. We paid our fee but most people do not.
- As my husband and I drove along the Las Vegas strip, we thought about all the employees it takes to run a casino and how big their electric bill must be – you know, the typical stuff tourists think about.
- We paid nothing for our hotel rooms. We had lots of reward points saved up.
- There is no sales tax in Oregon – boy, I could get used to that! The residents told us their property taxes are pretty high though.
- In a week after we returned, this was in my mailbox: