For some, October means autumn, for others, it’s just another exciting month in the College Football Season. Whether you’re tailgating or college-visit road-tripping during football season, the fall is a beautiful time of year to travel with family to a college campus. And, if you’re going for a taste of college football, a little advance planning will go a long way. * Check the college admissions office campus tour and information session schedule. Some colleges do not host weekend tours on home game weekends.
* Find out if parking on campus will be an issue (rather, assume it will be and call ahead and ask for information on where and when you can park on campus and what it will cost).
* If you did not plan well in advance (in some college towns, this could mean 6 months in advance), there may not be any hotel rooms available within an hour’s drive. (Again, this varies by locale.)
* Restaurants will also be packed before and after the game. Again, plan ahead. Make reservations if possible, order take-out, or have food delivered to your hotel room. Or, just go knowing you may have to wait to be seated. Often, what you experience is more about setting the right expectations. One thing for sure, you won’t be alone and there will always be someone to chat with while you wait.
If you’re planning just to visit campus on your own and attend also the game, but you don’t have tickets, check sites such as Craigslist, eBay and Facebook.
* And, if you’re traveling with the whole family, then you’ll want to do a little research and find out about local kid-friendly attractions (see California’s Kid-Friendly College Towns and 14 Favorite Fall Getaways for ideas for more family travel fun).
Even if you’re not a fan of college football per se, the energy and excitement of being on campus and attending a game cannot be ignored. Seize the opportunity and ask students you encounter what the like about their school. Ask them if there’s anything they don’t like. You’ll find most college students are easy to talk with and are usually willing to chat about their school. They can easily identify with you – they were in your shoes just a few years prior!