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  1. Default Short trips, or long ones?

    I'm planning my road trip for summer of 08' and I'm wondering, which do you prefer, shorter trips, a week to ten days, or, longer, 8 weeks plus? I think I'd prefer the 8 weeks, but I have some things I can't abandon altogether, like my job, and animals. I'm also thinking a 7-10 day trip would be less draining. I also think that the shorter trips could give me more of a range of life. Fall color in Maine, Burning man in August, Florida, or cali in the dead of winter, Asheville in spring... this kind of thing.

    One of my intentions is also to find another place to live, frankly, NJ is sucking the life out of me... faster paced, psudo nature, and the "clean" air.... I just want to get out...

    So I thought I could ask the experienced people, do you prefer week-10 day trips, or longer, 8+ week trips? Pros/cons

    Sorry if this is a beat to death topic, I couldn't find any other threads exactly like this.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default My Opinion

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    I suspect that there are a few regulars here who might disagree with me, but I would come down strongly in favor of doing several 1-2 week trips over doing one huge 8 week trek. There are several reasons for this.

    As exciting as taking a trip sounds, it is only exciting because it is different from your day-to-day grind. After a month or so, the trip would become the daily grind instead of the escape. Also a shorter trip tends to focus you on what it is you want to accomplish. With a longer time span, there is a tendency to adopt a 'maņana' attitude and before you know it you don't have time left to accomplish all the lofty goals you had when you set out. Taking several short trips lets you go to different destinations at different times. There are areas that are best seen at different times of the year (New England in fall comes to mind), and spreading your 'battery-recharging' episodes out over a year or more will do your soul more good than a single supercharge.

    Hope those thoughts help clarify the decision you're trying to make.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Take what you can get!

    I'm certainly of the opinion that any roadtrip is a good one, be it a 3 hour trip, a 3 day trip, a 3 week trip, or a 3 month trip.

    The reality is that most people have trouble pulling themselves away for more than a couple weeks, so most Americans limit themselves to shorter trips. (we really need to figure out that European 'holiday' thing, but that's another story)

    There's also the expense element, the longer you are on the road, the more money you need to spend - and its also more time you probably aren't at work making money.

    But of course, the more time you are on the road, the more things you can see, the more places you can explore, the farther from home you can get.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default A Matter of Perception

    Quote Originally Posted by SnakeMan View Post
    I'm planning my road trip for summer of 08' and I'm wondering, which do you prefer, shorter trips, a week to ten days, or, longer, 8 weeks plus?
    The difference between a car ride and a road trip is matter of what we decide -- it is the throwing of a switch in the brain. My personal favorite span of time is the 20-Hour roadtrip (long enough to get away and short enough that I can be back here, in the office, before anyone knows I was gone...) I am also a fan of the two-hour road trip and 6.5 year roadtrip. Mostly, I think any length of a roadtrip can be the ultimate on-the-road adventure -- time is elastic -- you get to create your own reality.

    ....And don't forget solo road trips -- you really can get away in one!


  5. #5

    Default It depends what you want out of it...

    It really depends where you are in your life, what you want out of it and how much time and money you have to spare. I've never been lucky enough to have either the time or the money to do an extended trip but it's something I'd like to try at some point. In the meantime I seem to get on very well with the occasional 10-14 day trip to the US along with some 'long weekends' closer to home when the budget airlines are doing cheap offers.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Central California

    Default Prefer long, but...

    in your case long is probably not the way to go.

    We're lucky to be able to work from the road so we can be gone in our RV for months at a time. But, if you are looking for places to relocate to and see some scenery, too, the 2-week trips might be the best. Especially for those western locales, you can easily fly in, do your loop trip and fly home. Unless you love long days of driving, New Jersey to anywhere west of the Mississippi is a long ride.

    A good resource for thinking about relocating is the Places Rated Almanac book, available at all bookstores. It gives you a good idea what the jobs, weather, crime, etc. are for over 360 places around the country. We carry one with us, just to check out places that look interesting.

    Author of America's Living History: The Early Years
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 05-27-2007 at 05:47 PM. Reason: added link to the book

  7. Default Very cool

    Thanks for all the responses! They have helped so much! I am one for driving, so I don't think long distance would be a problem. I work 1/2 hour away from my house because I like the drive...

    I really like the idea of a 20 hour road trip. I've always wanted to go back to the national aquarium in Baltimore, and a quick mapquest shows it is only 2.5 hours away, and the whole trip, including an OK hotel would cost somewhere between $200-$300 very doable, and best of all, I wouldn't have to take even a day off of work.

    I also mapquested Asheville, and if I go through Raleigh I could do the whole trip in 7 days, and would have enough time at both places to do some cool stuff, and soak up some local culture.

    For some reason when I hear road trip, I always think of rallys, like NY-LA and that kind of stuff, but There are some OK places around here... and when the airlines have some great deals... I could snatch them up and go out west... to vegas, and all when I'm "legal" (I'm 20 now)

    Thanks guys! I'm thinking of doing my first small 20 hr trip next month....

    Most of them will be solo... I find vacations more relaxing when I just get away from the people in my 'bubble' life.... 'house bubble' 'car bubble' 'work bubble'

    That looks like a cool book, I'm going to have to pick it up. Right now, I'm thinking asheville, NC, it is most like Jersey, weather wise, with less people... more culture, and full of those hippy types I seem to be attracted to, but also have a few serious people here and there. All this set in the mountains... at a relatively affordable price... my idea of perfection!

    Thanks again! I'm sure I'll be sticking around here!


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