Some say Spring unofficially begins on February 18 – the day pitchers and catchers report for Major League Baseball Spring Training. It’s an undeniably joyous time of the year for baseball fans across the country, with flocks of families migrating south to find warmth, support their team, and take a much needed vacation. Here’s how to plan the perfect trip.
- Figure out where you want to go. Spring Training is split into two mini-leagues, the Cactus League, based in Arizona, and the Grapefruit League, in Florida. You can see exactly where your favorite team plays here, or simply choose the destination that is more appealing and convenient for you.
- Figure out where to stay. Once you’ve decided on a destination, you need to figure out where home base will be. Whether you end up in Arizona or Florida, there are a number of cities that play host to Spring Training baseball.
- Arizona – Teams play all around the greater Phoenix area, but we’d recommend staying somewhere centrally located, so you can see as many games as possible while experiencing the city. Book a four star room in Phoenix for as low as $104 per night and up.
- Florida – Unlike Arizona, the stadiums are a little more spread out in the Grapefruit League, with teams playing all over the state. You can stay in a four star hotel in Orlando for as little as $95 per night and up, which is centrally located and allows for some additional sightseeing. (Universal Studios, anyone?) If a relaxing beach getaway is more your style, we’d recommend keeping it costal and staying in Tampa or West Palm Beach for as little as $127 a night and up.
- Rent a car. In order to see as many games as possible (squeeze in some extra-curricular sightseeing,) you’ll want to consider renting a car for the trip. Pick up at the airport in Phoenix or Orlando for only $20 per day. If you want to roll through town in style, and catch some extra rays, upgrade to a convertible for only $20 more.
- Buy Tickets. Once you’ve ironed out the logistics, it’s time to buy some tickets. To make things easier, buy in advance from the MLB or through a third party vendor for as little as $6 per seat. Getting tickets in advance allows you to relax and enjoy yourself on game day (without worrying about potential sell outs.)
- Bring the sunscreen. It’s been a long winter, and there’s no worse way to kick off Spring Training than with a painful sun burn. Pack your sunglasses and a baseball hat and make sure you bring lots of SPF 50 (you’ll thank us later).
That’s it! Follow these simple steps and you’re on your way to an unforgettable Spring Training experience.
**Prices based on search on 2/11 for hotels and car between 2/27 through 2/28.