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My daughter will be graduating on Nov. 13th. She is on Ship 14 Div.395. I am on a very limited budget as i am a single mom with 4 kids. How can i find the chepest airline tickets, hotels, etc.???

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Comment by Dawni on October 7, 2009 at 11:53am
Did you get your brochure from the Navy yet? Also if you go to the Bootcamp groups wall, you can go to their discussions and see a posting about were to stay. I haven't booked my room yet, and we had two free roundtrips from Southwest (which is inexpensive anyway) but it really helped us. Are you going to go by yourself, or taking the kids along? Most of the hotels will give you a discount rate if you tell them it's for Navy graduation. Keep in touch.
Comment by tanya joiner on October 7, 2009 at 1:32pm
I will be bringing my daughters husband. She needs me to loan him the money to come so i may have to pay for the two of us. My childrens father will be watching them.. thank you so much for talking with me.. it means a lot
Comment by jamie.rose.521 on October 7, 2009 at 3:17pm
The navy will usually send you a packet of information, and I would recommend calling around to the hotels around the Great Lakes area. We called about 2-4 hotels and most of them gave Navy Grad discounts which was really helpful. As for flights look at airports that might be a bit more of a drive for you, but cheaper, we got out tickets 100$ cheaper because we picked an airport that was a 45 minute drive instead of a 15minute drive. Best of luck to you!!
Comment by Paula S. on October 7, 2009 at 4:44pm
It's definately less expensive to fly into Midway. Assuming you will be renting a car, there are rentals deals out there that have unlimited mileage. Check out Priceline. I got a great deal on a rental car through them in Seattle, WA when I flew there for Tiger Cruise. Granted the car they gave me wasn't cosmetically great (lots of scratches), so just make sure that you go over the vehicle with a critical eye and note everything that you could be held responsible for. O'Hare airport is right off of I-294 which goes north up to Great Lakes. From Midway, you would have to drive a short distance on I-55 South to pick up I-294 but it's well worth it to save money on your airfare. Check out Southwest Airlines... they are my air carrier of choice and they don't charge at all for checking bags!
Comment by Johanna , Zac mom on October 7, 2009 at 5:25pm
We leave next week. We are also flying southwest into midway. Check the brouchure and call around.We are stayin at the red carpet inn it is very reasonable nothing fancy but it is only a mile from the base and they have a shuttle that will take you to graduation. All so I have read on alot of web sits that the train to and from Chicago is only $5.00 . The train station is right in front of the base. The only thing is how to get for airport ot train station? You will have to check that out. After next weekend i will know where the train stationis in chicago ,will let you know. Alot of sites say if going to Chicago for the day take the train alot of traffice. Hope this helpes
Comment by Paula S. on October 7, 2009 at 5:47pm
I live in the Chicago area and I would not try to navigate the train system from the airports... if you get lost, you could find yourself someplace you wish you weren't! Don't get me wrong... the city is gorgeous, but just like every other major city, there are some less than desirable areas. Save yourself the grief... rent a car.
Comment by Open C on October 7, 2009 at 6:48pm
We were on an EXTREME budget. i'm a single mom and my Sailor is the oldest of four. We decided driving was the absolute cheapest. 800 miles (one-way) and at the time fuel was pricier, but round-trip cost in the neighborhood of $250. We packed a bunch of food for snacking, but ate along the way at small towns as well as stopping at a few grocery stores for sandwich-type stuff (healthier and less expensive). Because I was taking medication at that time that made me VERY sleepy, I pulled over to rest/sleep every four hours, and sleeping in the car with a goal/destination wasn't too bad, since we had a minivan and packed pillows, blankets and stuffed animals. Tolls added another $50 round-trip. Food was roughly $50/day. We did this, to conserve the greater sghare of the monies for the hotel the night before, and taking the kids to Navy Pier. We stayed, literally 5 minutes from base, in a dive actually, but the owner gave cash discounts in addition to Navy discounts. That still cost $70 for the night (Chicago is easily double that!) Between Navy Pier and souvenirs (t-shirts, pencils, whatnot) along the way, that added another $500. There is a parking fee at Navy Pier, as well as any parking you do in Chicago at a garage. Other stuff popped up too, but the bottom line was around $1100. That's for four people--2 hotel nights, Navy Pier, food for 3 1/2 days, fuel for the car, tolls, parking, an oil change/air filter to ready the car, souvenirs, and smaller unexpected expenses. It was a really cool adventure, and my girls and I had a great bonding experience! Its one of our greatest memories ever!
Comment by Open C on October 7, 2009 at 10:35pm
btw, since you still have more than one month, bundles flights/hotel packages together at a HUGE discount provided you are willing to take a red-eye (before 6am, and after 10pm I think) flight, AND make the resrevations at least a month in advance. THEY DO NOT REFUND MONEY though, so don't schedule a flight that just gets you there on time, because yours might get delayed and they bump you to the next one. Also, there's Priceline, Hotwire, Travelocity and more. Google key words cheap hotels (or vacations).
Comment by Casey on October 8, 2009 at 12:14am
We just got back on Monday from our son's Graduation and I found us a pkg through Travelocity for $511 a person which included 2 round trip tickets non-stop, hotel (The Residence Inn) 4 nights, and a rental car unlimited miles. I would recommend a GPS if you can get one, ours was like gold. You'll find most everything is pretty close in proximity.
Comment by Pamela on October 8, 2009 at 1:06pm
Truthfully I live in Dallas, TX and there is three of us. By the time we calculated airplane tickets for three of us, car rental when we got there, food, and lodging we spent a lto less renting a car,gas , hotel and food. La quita her microwaves in their hotel rooms and refrig. I bought food for the refrig and bought bowls and stuff from home that I could put food in and microwave. I also packed a cooler for on the road with luncheon meat/hotdogs/ leftovers and things we could microwave in stores that we stopped and got gas. If you dont rent a car and take your own you would save more. We just did not want to put the milage on ours. We booked our hotel on expedia or travelocity. It was less than half the cost that was posted on the back of the door of our room. Also when we extended and stayed longer I just called my mother and she booked it over the internet at the same price. This was cheaper than the 20% that I get off of airline tickets being an airline employee.


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