Enjoy Your Bloomington Vacation on a Budget


Bloomington, Minnesota, is an incredibly popular destination, and like any other city with world-class shopping, dining, and attractions, it’s easy to spend a fortune during a trip here. Though Bloomington has an expansive selection of luxury hotels and amazing shopping opportunities, including the famous Mall of America, you can have fun on vacation here without spending lots of money. Follow these three tips to travel on a budget during your next visit to Bloomington.

Go Easy on the Luxury Dining

It can be tempting to eat out for every meal on a vacation, whether you simply don’t want to cook or prefer to experience the best of the many amazing eateries in the city before heading home. Especially for those traveling with a family, paying for two or three meals out every day adds up fast.

Plan for this by researching a few must-try restaurants ahead of time to make sure you hit your favorite spots and still experience some of the city’s unique fare without blowing through your budget. Another option is to book a room with kitchen facilities. This will make it much easier to pick up groceries and cook a few meals on your own before heading out for a day of sightseeing in Bloomington.

Plan Your Trip Around Discounts

Visitors can save lots of money on a trip to Bloomington by finding discounts for popular locations. For example, tickets for the SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium in the Mall of America are cheaper if you buy them online. You can also take advantage of The Big Ticket Adventure Pass, which offers a steep discount on regular admission prices, if you want to stop by this destination. This grants access to attractions in the mall (the aquarium plus Nickelodeon Universe, FlyOver America, Crayola Experience, the Minnesota Zoo and its IMAX Theatre, and the Science Museum of Minnesota) for one low price.

Find Free and Cheap Things to Do in the City

Limiting your spending while visiting major destinations such as Mall of America is one option, but travelers can also focus on visiting free or cheap attractions to lower their expenses. Two totally free options, if you want some time outdoors, are Normandale Japanese Garden and Hyland Lake Park Preserve. The Japanese gardens are fantastic if you just want to unwind, and you’ll find plenty of activities, such as fishing, swimming, and cross-country skiing, to keep you busy at Hyland Park.

Como Park Zoo & Conservatory is another free choice. Your family can spend an entire day looking at several animal exhibits and seasonal floral shows in the Sunken Garden at no charge. Other options for some free culture in Bloomington include Bloomington Historical Museum, Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.

There are plenty of other ways you can save on your next trip to the area – just remember to plan ahead. Many destinations have discounts you can take advantage of, and sites like Groupon and SaveOn are good resources for extra savings. Follow these tips, and you’ll have plenty of fun in Bloomington without going over budget.