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Where to Go with Your Tax Refund: The Roller Coaster Capital of the World

April 22, 2014 at 11:20 AM | by | ()

Tax day is here, and you're probably excited...but not because you love sifting through receipts and credit card statements. You're excited because you're getting a fat refund. Probably. The economy may be on its way back up, but you should try to stretch that tax refund as far as you can...like with a little "you did a great job last year" trip—a Tax Refund Vacation.

Sure, cultural experiences and taking in a little history are great options when heading out on holiday, but sometimes we recognize that a dose of serious fun is in order. That’s why we suggest skipping the long-haul hassle to hit up some summertime fun early in the season, and there’s nowhere better than to do so than Sandusky, Ohio.

Spread across 364 acres right on Lake Erie sits the world's best place to take in all things roller coaster. Cedar Point have over 70 rides and amusements, and when we last checked we think there were like 16 different roller coasters—although honestly we may have lost count. The park has been welcoming visitors as a summertime rite of passage since 1870, so you can bet they know how to keep a crowd happy.

Visiting sooner rather than later is probably best, as we know that tax refund is just burning a hole in your pocket. Opening weekend begins on May 10, and nonstop flights from New York-LaGuardia into Cleveland—about an hour away from Cedar Point—can be had for less than $300. Toledo-Express Airport is nearer, but they only have a couple flights in from Chicago-O'Hare every day on AmericanEagle/Envoy.

Those departing the Washington DC metro area can expect similar flight options, for around $250. Waving goodbye to Mickey Mouse to fly up from Orlando means departures just shy of $400. Cedar Point is road trip distance from much of the Midwest, so no worries about airfare there.

Online tickets start at just $50 for the day, but there are plenty of passes and other options if you’re looking to stay in town for a few days. As for accommodations, the Sandusky area offers the usual larger national and budget chain hotels, which means spots like Hampton Inn and Fairfield Inn and Suites which are options for around $100 per night. If you’re looking for the full Cedar Point experience, however, there are also on-site hotels, including Castaway Bay and the historic Hotel Breakers. You might pay a little more, but admission is often decreased, and you can score access to rides like GateKeeper, Ocean Motion, Midway Carousel, Raptor, Millennium Force, and Iron Dragon—among others—an hour before everyone else.

So there you have it—start summertime a little earlier than usual this year, and hit up the roller coaster capital of the world before everyone else. Enjoy climbing to over 200-feet aboard Magnum XL-200, and go ahead and thank us later.

[Photos: Andrew 94 & craiglloyd]

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