View Full Version : Rebirth in California (or die trying)

05-07-2009, 02:39 PM
I live in beautiful Pennsylvania. I have many reasons for wanting to make a trip to California. Awhile ago, I decided that if my life hadn't improved in 3 years, I was going to basically walk the earth and see where I'd end up. I've been mentally preparing for a trip like this my entire life. I'll spare you all the nonsense (unless you need to question my motive).

But yeah, I love the idea of this forum. Has anyone tried to make it from East coast to West on a (very) limited budget? What was your experience?

The difference between me and most civilized folk is that I am not opposed to panhandling, guitarhandling, and dumpster diving. If I get stuck in Nebraska for a few years...oh well.

A friend of mine took a train out there a few months ago. Does anyone know about how much that would cost this summer? When I get out there, how easy is it to find youth & food centers? I have an uncle I can live with once I'm out there.

Midwest Michael
05-07-2009, 03:42 PM
Welcome to the RTA Forum!

If you look around this site, you'll find lots of information about things to do, traveling on a budget, how much things cost, etc.

What you won't find is much encouragement for begging, panhandling, taking from shelters, etc. Panhandling is illegally pretty much anywhere, and charity organizations are already stretched to the brink trying to take care of local families, they shouldn't have to add out of towners who feel like traveling through their community to their already overburdened plates.

Amtrak is the only passenger train service in the US, so I'd look at their website if you want a price quote. Trains generally aren't that cheap though, and going by bus will likely be quite a bit cheaper.

05-07-2009, 05:59 PM
If you book now for a July trip, one way from Philly to LA on Amtrak is $243. Greyhound is $99.

05-08-2009, 04:17 PM
I was born and raised in Malibu California, my advice to you is to make sure you are able to afford the the visit. There are so many pan handlers, guitar players, etc... What is sad but true is that no one notices them.

California is nice, but know that it is nothing like what you see on television. If you know someone here then at least you would have a place to stay with someone to show you or point you in the right direction.
Please make the smart decision, it's sad seeing so many sad, dirty, smelly, hungry lonely people living in bushes in their card board box house.
Do the right thing!

05-11-2009, 11:28 AM
If you book now for a July trip, one way from Philly to LA on Amtrak is $243. Greyhound is $99.

wow! I didn't realize it was that cheap. I did a fuel cost thingy and it stated about 500$ to make it in a car. What would happen if I booked a trip in July, would the rates be much higher?

I understand what you guys are saying. I have an uncle and a friend living in CA right now.
how are the job opportunities out there?

05-11-2009, 11:41 AM
q- if I were going to take the bus, with 2 other people, how much should each of us have money-wise to account for food?

Midwest Michael
05-11-2009, 12:58 PM
Well, there is no way to know what promotions will be available in the future, but just as an example, if you bought a ticket to travel on Greyhound this week, your cost would be about $220 for a single one way ticket.

Since you wouldn't really be able to eat anything other than what you pack or can get for fast food during layovers or short scheduled stops, I'd expect you'd need at least $20 a day each for food.

05-11-2009, 02:41 PM
That $99 fare requires an advance purchase. If you do it on short notice, it will cost the same as Amtrak. Both amtrak.com and greyhound.com are easy to navigate and plan trips with.

Job opportunities are poor everywhere right now.