Thursday, August 15, 2013

Key West on a Budget

Key West hotels - key west on a budget, Key West Travel, Places to Stay Party Key West

Key West on a Budget

Party in Key West on the Cheap!

Exotic Key West sunset cruises, exquisite cuisine and exciting nightlife abound in Key West – but at hefty prices. The good news? You don't have to pay them! In fact, you can have a truly extraordinary time in Key West on a budget. All you need is a little creativity and foresight. There is so much to do in Key West Florida without spending a lot of money. You can do the Duval Crawl, the famous walk down Key West's famous Duval Street, and hit the bars along the street; Sloppy Joe's, Ricks & Durty Harry's, Captain Tony's, the Smallest Bar in Key West, and Hog's Breath. You can head out to Smather's Beach and bask in the sun. Hit Mallory Square at night and watch the sun hit the water as the street performers entertain you.

Key West Dining

Instead of lunch at that overpriced cafe on Duval with the free-appetizer coupon, head away from the throng. Visit Waterfront Market and get the best deli sandwich on the island or try the deliciously inexpensive tabbouleh at Lobo's Mixed Grill. In a rush? Grab a slice from The Upper Crust pizza joint downtown. On an extra-tight budget? Visit Publix in New Town, stock up on fresh eats and take your picnic down to Smathers Beach. Pro tip: It's tempting to splurge on lavish dinners at all those famous Key West restaurants – and perfectly okay, too! – but if you want a romantic meal without the unromantic cost, we recommend wine and Italian takeout on your hotel balcony.

Key West Accommodations

Always see Key West in the low season. The difference in rates can be well over $100 per night – a huge savings. Before you book, ask about specials, discounts (military, student, AARP, etc.) and included services. Make sure the hotel's location suits your vacation plans to avoid wasting money on taxis. Some hotels throw in attraction passes, tickets and coupons with rooms. Pro tip: Don't book online. Call and speak to a staff member to dramatically increase your chances of a better deal.

Key West Activities

$800 for a day of Key West fishing? We think not. Instead, hop on a Key West fishing party boat for up to six hours on the water for as low as $45 per person (even cheaper for kids!). You can even find sunset sails with unlimited beer, wine and snacks for around $30 each. Or, stay on dry land and head to the absolutely free nightly sunset celebration in Mallory Square. Get ice cream from Haagen-Dazs on Duval, window-shop on Front Street or feed the tarpon at Key West Bight. Pro tip: Get a Key West tourist map when you arrive and plan your own personal walking tour. You'll see, experience and discover so much more than the average visitor!

Key West Nightlife

Key West Bar-hopping can make a serious dent in your budget, especially at the bars most popular with tourists. Do a little research and you'll find bars that cater more to locals and generally lower prices. The Bottlecap Lounge is set apart from the throngs on Duval and features excellent live and local music. Hogfish Bar, located just off KeyWest on Stock Island, is a local favorite and far from the wallet-gouging prices of Old Town. Pro tip: Check out Finnegan's Irish Wake (if you can find it!) and definitely make time for karaoke and cheap cocktails at Two Friends.

Article by Kate Bradley

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