Hi there guys, this is my first post, and I come to you looking for experienced opinions and maybe some new ideas.
Anyways, 3 friends and I want to do not just a cross-country road trip, but an entire around the country road trip this summer to celebrate our graduation (we will all be 18 at the planned departure date). One of my friends essentially wants to see the entire country in one summer, more specifically all of the natural sights (Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone, etc.) and we started talking about doing it a few months ago. We're starting in New York, "ending" in San Francisco, spending a week there, then heading
back. We are planning on taking a month to do this. We have the route planned out pretty well, we made it so that no leg of the journey is longer than 8-9 hours. After doing a little planning, and mapquest-ing the total mileage of the route, we figured it to be about 7000 miles. We recruited two other kids to help spread out the cost
For a brief of the route: start in New York, drive to D.C., spend the night. Drive to Tennessee, spend 3 or 4 days there visiting the smoky mountains, Memphis, and Nashville. Then its off to Dallas, spend the night, then down to San Antonio, spend a day or two down there. Then drive across Texas towards El Paso, with the eventual destination of Tuscon, and spend a night there. Then up to the Grand Canyon, spend a few nights camping out there. Then over to Las Vegas and spend a night or two there. Then off to San Francisco, and like I said before, spend 5-7 days there, and take a break from diving. Then we would go up to Oregon and Washington, probably spend a night in Portland. Then drive across the northern part of the country to the eventual destination of Yellowstone, and spend a few nights camping there. Then over to the Badlands and camp there a night or two. Then over to Chicago, spend a night or two there (here we wanted to try and get it to line up so that we could get some tickets to a Cubs game and see Wrigley Field). Then across to Cleveland, spend a night, then to Philadelphia, then back home.
We've mapquested the directions for each individual route I explained above, and found motel 8's along the way in each major stop.
Since none of us actually own our own car, we would be renting a van so that we have room to stretch and whatnot, and also to save some motel costs by sleeping in it some nights. (lucky for us, NY is the only state that allows people under 21 to rent cars). I tried the fuel cost calculator out, and I put in 7000 miles, 10 mpg (is this a good estimation for say, a Ford Ecoliner size van?) and $3.50 per gallon, since that is about what it is here in NY. This came out to about $2,400. To rent the van for a month and for 7000 miles is about $2,200. So far we have quite a bill :P
My first question is, does this seem plausible for four 18 year olds to do in one month?
Second, how much do you estimate food will cost for 4 teenage boys over a month?
Third, do you have any suggestions about changing the route? Additions? Subtractions?