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Taking the bargain route

Mon., June 19, 2017, 1:58 a.m.

It all started with a single, attainable goal: buying a snazzy new Yeti cooler, filled with craft beer from microbreweries between the Inland Northwest and Texas.

To make it happen, 32-year-old Tyler McGuffin of Spokane Valley applied the skills he uses every day as an STCU accountant to plan an itinerary that would take him from Spokane to Waco, Texas. That’s where Yeti coolers are made and sold far more cheaply than their retail price.

The question: How to get Tyler, his wife, Tric, and their dog to Waco and back at a price that didn’t cancel out the savings on the cooler, but still enabled them to see and do everything they wanted?

In the end, their trip lasted two full weeks, put an impressive 4,500 miles on his 4Runner, and cost only about $1,200, beer included. And Tyler and Tric got to see “those places that we’ve always wanted to see,” such as Palo Duro Canyon in the Texas Panhandle and Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park, where they spent several days camping and hiking.

To learn how Tyler and Tric forged their bargain route, go to stcumoney.org