nola 6Later this afternoon, I’m hopping on a plane to New Orleans for the financial blogger’s conference known as FinCon.

I absolutely love New Orleans, so I can’t wait to get there.  Bourbon street- with its smooth jazz, hookers, and stench of puke and trash- has been calling my name for some time now.

Watch out bitches, here I come!

Of course, I am also excited to meet some of my amazing online friends for the very first time.  On the other hand, I’m also scared.  My social skills have pretty much gone down the drain since I quit my job and started working from home 16 months ago.  I mean, I barely know how to talk to anyone outside of email and text anymore.  Simply put, I’m awkward.

Fortunately, I am bringing my hunky husband along for moral support.  If we start feeling uncomfortable, our plan is to skip out on the whole thing and head to Fritzel’s European Jazz Club to drink Absinthe and watch the characters who come in and out of the gay strip club across the street.

While usually not interesting, that particular club is home to guys wearing ass-less chaps and furry boots who will occasionally come outside and scale the side of the building. Good times.

My Frugal Trip to New Orleans

The cool thing is, most of our trip was paid for with credit card rewards.  Thanks to Southwest Rapid Rewards points and our Southwest Companion Pass, our flights only cost 14,000 Rapid Rewards points and $11.50 total…for two people!

Our hotel, which costs a total of $139 per night, will also be paid for with cash-back I earned from my Capital One Spark Business card.  #Winning

With that in mind, I budgeted $400 total for the trip:

  • $80 round-trip for a cab to our hotel
  • $320 for food, drinks, and entertainment

Breakfast and lunch are included in the fee for the convention, but I was afraid they wouldn’t have many vegetarian options so I went ahead and budgeted money to purchase my own meals.  I sincerely hope I won’t need that much, but I would rather be safe than sorry.

Frugal Things to Do in New Orleans

Fortunately, there are plenty of free things to do in New Orleans.  In fact, one of my favorite things to do is walk up and down Bourbon and Royal and watch all the crazy people walk by.  In case you have never been, there are a ton of freaks in New Orleans on any given day.

I feel right at home.

Saint Louis Cemetery

Saint Louis Cemetery

I also love their historic cemeteries.  The area around them is a little sketchy, but the way they make me feel is hard to explain.  Walking into the Saint Louis Cemetery is like stepping back into another time and place and breathing in the very culture that is New Orleans.

Beyond those gems, New Orleans is home to numerous art galleries and museums, as well as  historic sites like Jackson Square and the French Quarter.  And with Harrah’s casino right outside the French Quarter, New Orleans is also a great place to play poker or craps….or try your hand at the slot machines.

I hope we have a blast and will definitely report back with some of the highlights of my trip!  In the meantime, check out some of my favorite pictures from other trips we’ve taken to the area:

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nola 3nola 4nola 5nola 6Have you ever been to New Orleans?  What is your favorite things to do in the “Big Easy?”