- Check out the spring training schedule as soon as it comes out. Assuming you just want to go for four nights, pick out three games that sound do-able. The Jays do three-game spring training flex packs. I highly recommend the best seats, because you'll never get to sit right behind the plate at the Rogers Centre for twenty bucks. I got seats five rows behind the plate, and they would have been better if I didn't want an aisle seat. (Damn girl bladder.) Don't order them until you find a good flight/hotel package for those dates.
- I'd recommend going for weekdays, since kids are still in school. Weekends are probably more crowded.
- Go to travel.yahoo.com - not .ca. I laboured away on a crapload of the usual travel websites, and I found yahoo to have the best deals by far. YMMV.
- Air Canada had $99 seats direct out of Toronto to and from Tampa, and that's what I went for.
- Use Google Maps with street view to see what's close to your hotel.
- Be willing to stay somewhere a little farther away from the ballpark. You'll pay out the nose if you insist on staying in Dunedin. I was in the less-attractive part of Clearwater along US 19, but it was clean and safe. I would not hesitate to stay there again. There are a ton of hotels along that strip and I'd bet most of them are a safe bet. Bonus: consider catching the Jays at Bright House Field against the Phillies. That's what I'd like to do next time. Walking distance.
- My ridiculously-cheap hotel had free breakfast, a fridge and microwave in the room; plus a 24-hour Walmart and Wendy's very close by. So I saved quite a few bucks on meals.
- I don't drive, so I had no choice, but consider getting a city bus pass and the SuperShuttle to and from the airport instead of renting a car. The PSTA ain't exactly the TTC, but it was adequate. You can get $4 day passes or $20 for a whole week. Supershuttle fare is about $50 round trip.
- Travel light and take the TTC to the airport. There's an express bus to and from Pearson out of the Kipling station about every 20 minutes.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Inspired by a comment left for Ian. I am a cheap B-word. I figured I'd make a post about how I got to spring training and back super-cheap.