The University of Notre Dame plays 7 home football games starting this year (2006) and unless you're coming for the game or have someplace else to stay, it's best to avoid South Bend on these weekends. Hotels in the county are usually sold out and if you are lucky enough to find a room, you will pay a lot of money for it, often be required to stay 2 or 3 nights, and either not be able to cancel it or have to cancel it well in advance. For example, this year, Notre Dame plays host to Penn State the second Saturday of September all 4,000+ hotel rooms in St. Joseph county are completely full. Many hotels will charge 3, 4, or even 5 times the normal rate for a room on home game weekends and require at least a 2 night stay. So again, unless you are coming specifically to experience a Notre Dame home game, avoid home game weekends. Notre Dame's football schedule can be found all over the internet at any sports site such as espn.com and also at Notre Dame's website www.nd.edu.
If you're happen to pass by South Bend on the Indiana Toll Road (I-80/90) looking for a motel to stay overnight, take Exit 77.
On this Indiana 933/U.S. 31 Business road, you will find Howard Johnson, Best Inn, Knights Inn, Days Inn, Holiday Inn, and a few others. The gasoline sold at gas stations on this road is also usually cheaper than other places in the region. You will find several nice restaurants too; one Chinese and one place that sells gyros.
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