Wed. Jan 19th, 2022

Spring break is quickly approaching and as students begin to pack their bags and head to popular spring break locations such as Cancun, Nassau, Panama City Beach and Miami, many students are either going home or staying local for the week-long break.

According to bestvalueschools.com, 1.5 million students go on spring break every year. Going away for spring break on the budget of a college student can be very difficult, but that doesn’t mean those students shouldn’t be able to find something exciting to do during the break due to a lack of finances. There are many reasonably priced things to do in the area that are affordable for spring-breakers on a budget. If you are looking to stay in the Philadelphia area, there are exciting things to check out in the city that are very reasonably priced.

The Magic Gardens on South St. features half a block full of colorful mosaic sculptures, tunnels and grottos created by Isaiah Zagar. The Magic Gardens has become a popular attraction and admission for adults is just $7.

Another attraction to visit in the city is the One Day in Pompeii exhibit at The Franklin Institute. On display until Apr. 27, the exhibit features artifacts retrieved from the volcanic ash left by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in the year 79 A.D. Adult tickets to this exhibit are $27.50 and hours range from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, and 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.

A great place to stop while in the city to get the full Philadelphia experience is either Geno’s or Pat’s Steaks, and they are located where Ninth St. meets Passyunk Avenue in Philadelphia. Whether you are a fan of one or the other, these popular street side steak shops are a part of Philadelphia’s history and are definitely something to try at least once!

If spending a day in Philadelphia is not of interest to you and you are searching a more reasonably priced getaway, the discount site Groupon.com offers some specials for hotels in Atlantic City. Atlantic City is always a great time with exciting nightlife, restaurants, music and more; there is always something to do. One of the discounts is a one night stay at Bally’s Atlantic City, Sunday through Thursday for $59. This Groupon deal also includes a $30 dining credit and a $15 beverage credit. I personally have used a package similar this one in the past and it was an awesome deal! It saved me a lot of money on food and drinks, and I had more money to put towards taxi fare to get from hotel to hotel. If Bally’s isn’t your hotel of choice, the site also features a 5 percent discount at many other popular hotels such as Harrah’s, Trump Plaza, Caesars, Showboat, as well as others. Groupon is a great place to search for discounted getaway and dining coupons in your area.

If you are willing to travel a little further, another great place to visit if you have a free day or two is Baltimore. The drive from West Chester is only an hour and a half, and when you are in the city there are many different things to check out. Baltimore.org offers a list of 50 Free Things to do in Baltimore, and the Inner Harbor is always a great place to go. The Inner Harbor is beautifully lit at night, and many restaurants feature outdoor seating or large window views of the harbor. Filled with different restaurants and shopping, the Inner Harbor is always full of tourists and offers a lot of attractions. For just $12 you can hop on the Baltimore Water Taxi and ride all day long and can get on and off at all 12 of the stops the taxi makes. The Baltimore Water Taxi offers a great view of the Inner Harbor. Right in the harbor is the National Aquarium which is a very popular tourist attraction. Admission to the aquarium is $34.95 for the day and since it is right at the Harbor it’s within walking distance to other popular places like the Maryland Science Center, and the Baltimore Maritime Museum. Groupon features hotels in the Baltimore area at reasonable prices so you could even extend your visit if you would like.

Trying to make the most of your spring break vacation can be difficult if you can’t afford to go to a lavish resort and escape the cold weather. If you take advantage of deals on sites like Groupon, or even search free things to do in the city, there are plenty of options to make a full day of activities. Whether you only make it to Philadelphia, or can find time to go a little further to Atlantic City or Baltimore, it is always nice to plan ahead and get the most for your money, especially on the budget of a college student.

Alexandra is a fourth-year communication studies major minoring in  journalism. She can be reached at AA736117@wcupa.edu.

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