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  1. #1

    Default Coast to Coast summer 2006

    Hey All!

    We are a couple of guys (probably around 7) who are planing to go on a roadtrip coast-to-coast for about one month next summer. We just started planing everything so nothing is really decided yet, so I would appreciate any inputyou guys may have. I have calculated with a budget around $3500 per person (incl. everything except the plane ticket) - is that realistic? What are the musts on the way? We want to see a little bit of everything - city-life, nature, adventures (rafting, paintball, etc. etc.). Not sure if we will go from east to west or the other way around - does it matter?
    I have been trying to find a good place to rent a large van (as large as possibe as we want to sleep in it some times - maybe a 12-seater) but haven't been able to find anything - any good tips on this?
    Again, any input greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!

    /Christian

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,319

    Default

    You might start by reading some guides like Drive USA written for specifically for foreign travelers in the US. The International Page on this website has lots of good information for you that you will want to check out as well.

    Hertz and Avis both have 12 passenger vans. I'm sure all the major rental companies do. Others to check out are National, Thrifty, Alamo. I'm sure there's more but this is all that pops into my head right off. Drive USA and the link will give you some good information that you'll need to know regarding the various fees associated with renting a vehicle. You will need to know whether or not you need to get the extra insurance they will want to sell you (as just one example). Buying all these add-ons really raises the cost of renting. You may need these add-ons, or not. Knowing ahead of time will help you figure your costs better.

    As for what to see....gosh, this is a BIG country! There is no way you can see everything in a month. I would suggest that you do some research through guide books, this website and forums, and anything else you can find. Then make up a list of "must-see" stuff and take a map of the US and mark the locations you want to see and this will start to give you an idea of what route you need to drive. This will give you a starting point around which you can plan the rest of your trip.

    If it was me, I'd probably drive from east to west. However, that doesn't mean it's the best way. It just makes sense to me. Maybe because of westward migration? Our history started in the east and moved west. But I think the trip would be equally enjoyable each way. You will find traffic and population more congested along each coast with things more wide-open in the middle portion of the country.

    $3500 per person should be quite adequate since you will be splitting the cost of vehicle rental, fuel, hotel rooms, etc. At hotels, you will likely need to plan for at least 2 rooms for 7 guys. (How did a couple of you become 7? LOL) With $3500 you should have a fair amount of money to play with.

    I hope this helps you get started on your planning and that you will come back here as you get more specific questions to ask.

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks a lot Judy!

    I was uncertain re. the budget as I do not know how much to calculate for food and accomodation. Hopefully $3500 should be OK for 30 days. As it looks right now we will go from NYC to L.A. and do some detours on the way (decided on east to west after your advice and also something I read about not driving towards the sun). Any ideas on detours and must-sees along the way is greatly appreciated (doing research as I write but always good with a lot of input!).

    Thanks!

    Christian

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,319

    Default

    What general route did you decide on? Kinda hard to make recommendations for things to see without knowing what route you're taking.

    As for budgeting....gosh, this gets tricky. Again, it depends on what you want to see and do. A roadtrip that focuses on cities, nightlife, and expensive attractions like theme parks, can eat through $3500 quite fast. A roadtrip that focuses on hiking and just enjoying the outdoors can be fairly inexpensive. Eating in restaurants and staying in hotels also eats up cash quickly. Eating out of a cooler and camping makes a little cash last a long time. Which kind of trip are you doing?

  5. #5

    Default Monument Valley - St. Louis

    Hey all,

    We are 6 guys planning a coast to coast road trip in July (San Francisco to NYC). I am in charge of the trip from Monument Valley to St. Louis (5 days in total with stopover in Denver) meaning that I should come up with a route, places to stay and things to see on the way. We want to see a bit of everything and also have some hands-on fun activities (paintball, go-carts, camping etc etc). We are all from Denmark so all suggestions and ideas are welcome ;)

    Thanks!

    BR
    Christian

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    9,262

    Default Nice to have you back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Krikker
    We are 6 guys planning a coast to coast road trip in July (San Francisco to NYC). I am in charge of the trip from Monument Valley to St. Louis (5 days in total with stopover in Denver) meaning that I should come up with a route, places to stay and things to see on the way.
    Great to see that the trip first discussed last July is still on the planning boards. So each of the six travelers are planning a leg? How long will the total trip be? You might consider having everyone take our roadtrip compatibility quiz!

    Mark

  7. #7
    pmteet Guest

    Default

    Well, if you are in St. Louis the Arch is a Must in my opinion. If you are going to spend the night here. The landinding is nice for the single crowd
    http://www.slfp.com/LacledesLanding.html

    I have lived in st. Louis all my life. I hope you enjoy it.

    Michelle

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France
    Posts
    753

    Default Tips from east to west

    Hi Christian,

    St. Louis is the Gateway to the west so for starters you might want to visit the Gateway Arch and its underground museum. You can also take a guided tour of the Anheuser-Busch Brewery. Don't miss the St. Louis Walk of Fame where you can look for the golden stars of Chuck Berry, Ike & Tina Turner, Terry Clark, William Burroughs, Scott Joplin, Tennessee Williams, T.S. Elliot and Miles Davis. If you enjoy rollercoasters and ride, check out the XCalibur and the Boss at the Six Flags. Cheap accomodations in St. Louis can be found at Edmund A. Babler SP (campground), Webster University (summer hostel), at the Royal Budget Inn (~45$) in Fairmont City, IL or any Motel 6.

    In independence, check out the National Frontier Trails Museum and have an old fashioned floater at Clinton's Soda Fountain. In Kansas City, check out the American Jazz Museum and the Grand Emporium blues club. For cheap lodging check out Lake Jacomo campground, the Budget Host Inn off I-70 (~30$+), American Inn. The Interstate Inn off I-70 has great rates but the rooms are not exactly sparkling clean, I don't recommend it.

    Here are some tips on Nebraska, Wyoming and Colorado (including Denver). Here are two other threads about Utah 1 2. Must sees within Colorado and Utah include Rocky Mountain NP, Million Dollar Highway, Mesa Verde NP, Arches NP and Moab, Bryce Canyon and Zion NP.

    Happy planning!
    Gen

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