It is time to break out the peanuts and lawn chairs and get ready to cheer for your favorite baseball players. Check out these options for getting to central Florida to see the Astros in action this March. To see the most games in one trip, plan for the week of March 25 to 31, when the Astros play five games. Otherwise, spring training runs March 3 – 31, 2012. Get a peek at the Astros’ full spring training schedule here.
Spring Training USA
6167 Jarvis Ave., Ste. 302
Newark, CA 94560
Price: 3-day packages start at $459 per person, including Astros’ game tickets
Hours: reservations Mon to Fri – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
These weekend travel packages have been arranged by the Astros through Sports Marketing USA to accommodate the fan who wants to get to a couple of games for the weekend, meet some of the Astros players or staff, and take home team-related merchandise. There is a package for each of the four weekends the team is in Kissimmee, ranging from three to
four days in length, and the packages for the final two weekends include opportunities to meet Astros personnel. The packages include options for accommodations, game tickets and a rental car.
Best Option for Families or Larger Groups
1011 W. 5th St., Ste. 300
Austin, Texas 78703
Phone: contact individual property owners listed at website
Price: from $40 per day, depending on selection of accommodations/plus $15 to $24 for Astros’ single-game tickets
Reservation hours: will vary by individual property owner
Spring training vacations can provide the setting for extended-family or large-group get-togethers with short-term rental homes or condos. VacationRentals.com is a clearing house for individual property owners who rent their properties to travelers, often in planned communities that offer additional amenities such as community pools and/or parks, along with the conveniences of a normal home (full kitchen, dining area, individual bedrooms and bathrooms). Depending on the size of the property, these rentals can generally accommodate six to 12 people.
Best Option for a Short Drive to Osceola County Stadium
Tropical Palms Resort
2650 Holiday Trail
Kissimmee, FL 34746
Price: from $80 per day, depending on selection of accommodations/plus $15 to $24 for Astros’ single-game tickets
Reservation hours: Mon to Fri – 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In the team’s spring training home of Kissimmee, the Astros are close to the hub of central Florida’s top tourist destination, Orlando. And because of that, convenient accommodations are never a problem to find. But none may be more convenient for Astros fans than this resort-style facility that offers cottages that can accommodate 4-6 adults, as well as an RV park, just three miles from Osceola County Stadium. Amenities include on-site dining, pool and playground areas and live entertainment.
Best Option for Travelers with RVs or Limited Budgets
Ponderosa Campground/RV Park
1983 Boggy Creek Rd.
Kissimmee, FL 34744
Price: $20 to $30 daily/$175 w/plus $15 to $24 for Astros’ single-game tickets
Hours: reservations Mon to Fri – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Campgrounds and RV parks are tried-and-true staples for many seasoned travelers who own their own RVs or camping equipment, but are often overlooked as options for this type of trip. Whether or not this is a viable option depends completely on the traveler’s individual desire or ability to cope without certain amenities (individual rooms, bathrooms, showers, etc.), but anyone who can take a little close-knit action should hop on board with these budget-friendly accommodations. Along with many standard campground amenities, Ponderosa offers the advantage of being across the street from Osceola County Stadium. The facility has three recently renovated restrooms and bath houses, and also offers Wi-Fi service for guests. More than two dozen golf courses are within a short distance of the park.
Best Option for Additional Attractions
Walt Disney World Resorts
1195 E. Buena Vista Dr.
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Price: from $68 per person, per day, depending on selection of accommodations/plus $15 to $24 for Astros’ single game tickets
Reservation hours: Sun to Sat – 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
For many travelers, a trip to an Astros spring training game is part of a larger Florida vacation plan. Undoubtedly, Disney resort hotels offer those travelers the most family friendly opportunities for additional activities and attractions. Travelers will be able to book vacation packages with choice of value, moderate or deluxe accommodations among Disney’s varied resort hotels, and plan fun family time outside of game hours. Besides accommodations, packages include air fare, transportation to and from hotels to the airport, tickets to Disney’s theme parks and optional dining plans.
Lonnie King is a freelance writer living in Houston. His work can be found at Examiner.com.