Looking for budget ideas in New Orleans

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by 570traveler, Sep 15, 2018 at 12:56 PM.

  1. 570traveler

    570traveler Mouseketeer

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    My husband was selected for a trip to attend a work conference in New Orleans. His expenses will be totally reimbursed. I’ve decided to tag along since I only have to pay for my airfare.
    We will be there the last 5 days of October staying at the Renaissance Arts Hotel.

    Looking for fun, inexpensive things to do in the area (mostly after 4pm when his conference ends each day). We planned to arrive a day early (Saturday) so we will have most of that day as well.

    Is the public transportation system safe? Does it run all day?

    Will there be any special things going on around Halloween (coming home late on the the 31st)?

    What will the weather be like?

    Saw a groupon for a paddle boat dinner cruise? Anyone experience this? Could we safely walk from our hotel to the river walk area?

    We’ve been once before (with 2 teenagers) in summer. Only spent one day there (French Quarter Area). So we really haven’t seen much of the city.

    We’d appreaciate any insider tips to make this trip memorable!
     
  2. verleniahall

    verleniahall DIS Veteran

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    contact the chamber of commerce and the cvb in that area for information
     
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  4. Deb & Bill

    Deb & Bill DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention

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    Take a cemetery tour if you can. They aren't free, but most interesting. Go during daylight hours.
     
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  5. 570traveler

    570traveler Mouseketeer

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    I have requested a visitors guide. Just trying to find out things that people think are worthwhile.

    That sounds fun! Maybe they’ll have something unique going on since it’s Halloween.
     
  6. AgentMama

    AgentMama Earning My Ears

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    We've walked to the Riverwalk area and felt safe (during the day), it's under construction and didn't really hold our attention. The trolley is a good way to see some of the city.
     
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  7. jsmla

    jsmla DIS Veteran

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    Stop by the Jean Laffite visitor center for lots of free info and a short orientation talk
    https://www.nps.gov/jela/french-quarter-site.htm


    Have beignets and Cafe au lait at Cafe du Monde
    http://www.cafedumonde.com/

    Take the Algiers ferry for a unique view of the river
    http://www.norta.com/Maps-Schedules/New-Orleans-Ferry


    Ride the streetcar Uptown and have lunch at a famous NOLA greasy spoon
    https://www.neworleansonline.com/tools/transportation/gettingaround/streetcars.html

    https://www.neworleansonline.com/directory/location.php?locationID=1784

    If you're so inclined walk up Bourbon to Lafitte's Blacksmith Bar and have a hurricane in an old FQ bar.
    https://www.neworleansonline.com/directory/location.php?locationID=1784
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 4:40 PM
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  8. MomToOne

    MomToOne DIS Veteran

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    Go to the World War II museum. It really shouldn't be missed - it is world class.
     
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  9. 4kids4karen

    4kids4karen DIS Veteran

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    I have been many times and am going again soon in a few months. My ideas may not be low budget but are fun.

    I love the ghost tours and carriage ride tours. There is a vampire tour, but that is not my thing. Years ago I did a guided tour of the garden district and that was fun. I also am the type to pay for the home tours and tour the historical homes. If you have ever wanted a tarot card reading, go to Marie Laveau's House Of Voodoo on Bourbon. I don't care about the swamp tour. Visit the tourist information center on Decatur street for lots of tourist things to do and a coupon book.

    Cafe Du Monde at midnight is one of our family traditions. Go to the original location, not the smaller cafe, it's not the same experience (food is the same). If Cafe Du Monde has long line, ask for directions to the bathroom, there is a inside seating area near the bathroom that normally has tables. Or you can tip staff to allow you to skip the line. If you do this, go to the back entrance that typically doesn't have a line or has a shorter line than the front entrance. Just walk around random streets but after dark stay out of alleys that seem pretty vacant. Bourbon is safe any time of day or night because there are always plenty of people around.

    Look up French Quarters web cameras. There is one on Bourbon street our cheerleaders went and did a pyramid in front of. Typically there are web camera signs on the street, but this is a good way to check out a few days early what the weather is like and what others are wearing. Plus it is fun to watch the cameras.

    The cemetery tours are a must. Most cemeteries close earlier than you would expect so make sure to go early in the day.

    There is a "Stray Boots" scavenger hunt app. Only one of you need to pay for it to play on your phone. It takes you walking around various streets in the French Quarter finding landmarks, so you learn about the area on the way. Hint: The last stop is Cafe Du Monde. You can do it little by little during your trip. When we did it, you had a year to complete it. We saw many folks doing this scavenger hunt. This is budget friendly and fun.

    By the way, we have walked from our hotel across from the convention center to the French Quarter on may cheerleading trips, with our young girls in tow. It is safe. If it is cold or raining, taxi's are cheap.

    For breakfast, I really like "Mother's" but if you don't get there early there is a long line.
     
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  10. SaintsManiac

    SaintsManiac DIS Veteran

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    Voodoo Fest is October 27-29, so your chances of catching some good late night live shows downtown are high. I would budget for Uber/Lyfts around the area.

    Check out The Blue Nile on Frenchmen St. You could catch some great music for a low cover.

    I cannot comment on the paddle boat thing. Never heard of it.

    No Saints game that weekend, so you won't have that craziness to deal with.
     
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  11. JustCallMeMommy

    JustCallMeMommy DIS Veteran

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    You will be able to walk to anywhere in the French Quarter from your hotel, and you can catch the trolley to cut down on the walking. Most of the touristy things will be in the Quarter. You are staying very close to one of the entrances to the Riverwalk, but definitely take the time to go to the "real" Cafe Du Monde, instead of the one inside the Riverwalk.

    I would spend an evening walking around the French Quarter - it is a neat place to visit. For evening partying, visit Bourbon Street. You may decide that isn't your scene, but it is a great place to people watch. That close to Halloween, I imagine there will be lots of visitors having a good time. While you are doing that, go have a Hurricane at Pat O'briens and spend some time in their dueling piano bar.

    Just down from your hotel, Mulates has incredible bread pudding. Mother's is close, too. Someone recommended it for breakfast, but their po-boys for lunch are incredible, too. There is always a line, but it moves.

    I'll be in NO this weekend, and this thread has made me hungry!
     
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  12. monarchsfan16

    monarchsfan16 <font color=green>Holy smokes, the DIS is a big pl

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    It's not the cheapest activity, but still very reasonable (or was last I knew), to see a performance at Preservation Hall. Spring for the tickets that provide reserved seating. It's such a cool environment, and if you've got the reserved seating, you don't have to wait in line for an extended period of time to get. Incredible music there too. Performances are at night.

    The World War II museum is amazing. Not budget, but incredible. That can easily take the bulk of a day.

    If you're looking for budget museums for daytime, the Cabildo and Presbytere in Jackson Square are reasonable and very well done. Buy the tickets together for a slight discount.

    Beignets at Cafe du Monde are a must. We found the food and prices to be great at the Gumbo Shop.
     
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  13. halfpintpeggy

    halfpintpeggy DIS Veteran

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    Our friend is one of the piano players at Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop - such a terrific spot!
     
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  14. Sagginit

    Sagginit Hulagirl_Tiki

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    I found a good deal on cemetary tour on groupon when I went. I found some good weekday lunch specials for meals in fancier restaurants in touristy areas. The business district not far from the french quarter had good happy hour deals on dining. We bought a walking tour book in a gift shop for a few bucks and toured the French Quarter ourselves, if you look ahead of time you may be able to find one online to use.

    Bourbon St we avoided, it was just gross and overly touristy for us, think Times Square meets bar crawl.

    Overall we found prices for food and drinks was lower priced for a city (less than say NYC/San Fran/EU cities) so it was a very budget friendly trip overall.
     
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  15. ajwolfe

    ajwolfe DIS Veteran

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    We did a Free Tours by Foot ghost tour that was awesome- only cost is what you feel is a fair tip. We found a groupon for an airboat tour that was really reasonable. Also there is almost always a groupon for the Mardi Gras Museum - we thought it would be hokey but we actually all really had fun doing it.
    I would recommend spending some time in Jackson Square with the artists/musicians. Plenty of music on Frenchmen's street to take in.
    I know it's not popular opinion but we didn't get that much out of the World War II museum - pricey and extremely crazy crowded. The crowds made it next to impossible to really enjoy and we even went on a week day.
     
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  16. 4kids4karen

    4kids4karen DIS Veteran

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    How do you label Bourbon St "gross" if you never experienced it? The street is full of history and has some great jazz bars.
     
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