I’m a big believer in visiting college campuses before committing to study at one for four years. Seeing a college on paper or on the internet is just not the same as soaking up the vibe in person.
My son still has one more year of high school, but he will begin his college applications this summer. We have already visited three colleges with him, but we still had one more on his list: Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas
Visiting Texas Tech on Miles and Points
I know what you’re thinking. Why not just drive to Texas Tech?
Well, Texas is HUGE. And Texas Tech is about a 6-hour drive from our house. It’s very doable, but a bit more difficult to do when you’re trying to squeeze in a visit during the academic year. Thankfully, both Southwest and American have flights from DFW to Lubbock.
Flights: Cash prices for our tour date were running $200+ round-trip, which is crazy compared to historic prices. Luckily, I found some AA web special awards for 6500 miles each way. I’ve been collecting extra AA miles through our Bask Bank savings account. Done!
Hotel: We stayed at Hyatt Place Lubbock for 8000 World of Hyatt points per night. The hotel is just one block from campus and includes free breakfast. Very convenient!
We had no need to rent a car because we could Uber from the airport to our hotel for ~$16 each way.
Note: Earlier this year, we visited two other universities that are within a much shorter drive of our house without spending the night. Last year, we visited another college by hooking it onto a vacation we already had planned in Florida (using miles and points, of course!)
Unexpected Benefits of this Trip
We had the opportunity to try a restaurant across from campus that is famous for its fried cheese sticks.
And, we saw that the entire town of Lubbock really stands behind the university. Texas Tech stuff is everywhere!
But the biggest benefit of taking this trip with my son was the one-on-one time we got together without distractions. He told me stuff that is happening in his world that I wouldn’t normally hear. And, we actually had fun and laughed on this trip. I know he will benefit greatly from flying the coop in a year, but in the meantime, I’m enjoying these experiences with him.
And if you’r reading this to see photos of the Texas Tech campus, see below. It’s a lovely campus.
Nancy lives near Dallas, Texas, with her husband and three kids. Her favorite vacations include the beach, cruising and everything Disney.
“I’m a big believer in visiting college campuses before committing to study at one for four years. Seeing a college on paper or on the internet is just not the same as soaking up the vibe in person.”
Wait… Do some people commit without an in-person visit?
@projectx Yes, some do, but I think it was more common during the pandemic. One of the schools we toured earlier this year was still not allowing visitors in the dorm, so we didn’t get to see that. If my son decides that school is on top of his list, we will go back to see the dorms. Thankfully that one is just an hour away.
Another Red Raider here. Graduated 25 years ago and visited 2 years ago with my son and Lubbock around TTU changed drastically compared to 25 years ago.
@Sam I’m sure it’s changed a lot! I heard all of those apartments across the street are kinda new.
I graduated from Tech 11 years ago from their Engineering dept. Greatest chapter in my life (behind having my kids). Memories I’ll never forget and friends I still talk with even though they live far away. Lubbock is a great community and tech is a wonderful school. Hope your son becomes part of the Red Raider family!
@Tom So wonderful to hear you had a great experience at Texas Tech! I hope that at least one of my kids ends up there. My Father-in-law graduated from Tech.