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  1. Default Summer Roadtrip 09

    Hello again,
    we decided to wait and do the road trip this summer so we'd have more time to plan properly. We fly into boston on June 10th, drive up to Salem for 2 nights to get the trip started, then head down to Washington. Does anyone have any good suggestions of where we should stop off between Salem and Washington? If not anywhere to stop, then a good route to take? It takes about 8 hours to Washington, so we'd rather stop off somewhere as only one of us will be driving.

    Also, what's everyone's opinion on Motel 6's? We traveling cheap, but if they're really bad then we might have to spend a bit more maybe??? Our first Motel 6 would be in Danvers and the reviews of it are pretty poor. We've been in some bad places before, but if it is genuinely that bad, we were thinking off spending a bit more - especially on our first couple of nights.

    Thanks for the help
    Lucy & Jo

    {I haven't merged this new thread with the previous one, since the route is different, but many of your queries still apply -- be sure to re-read it).
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-04-2009 at 01:06 PM.

  2. Default

    sorry about that, but thank you!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default what you pay for

    Motel 6 is consistantly the lowest price chain out there, at least on the sticker price.

    However, the price they advertise is usually a rate for one person, and a room with one bed, one tv, and a bathroom. Its not going to be anything particularly nice and certainly not fancy. Personally, I think they also tend to nickel and dime people, because they charge more for each person, you won't get even a stale doughnut continental breakfast, and I've even seen locations where you have to pay extra for typical motel basics like soap or shampoo.

    Motel 6 does exactly what they set out to do, be at the very bottom when it comes to price. However, for my money, often times I think you can find much better values by spending only a couple dollars more if you're willing to do a little shopping around.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    The closer to large cities you are, the shabbier and more expensive the Motel 6's generally are. I will only stay in them off Interstate exits in rural areas or in small towns. I have stayed in one near a big city (King of Prussia, PA) that was actually quite nice, but it was 80 bucks a night. Super 8 is a bit better, but the same thing applies around cities.

    Any hotel/motel along your route is going to be expensive. There is no cheap lodging in the Boston/DC corridor. The King of Prussia/Valley Forge Motel 6 may be your best bet for something livable under $100 a night, it's NW of Philadelphia on US-202 just off the Turnpike and I-76.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Your Choice

    You have two basic options for the drive from Salem to Washington. The first is to basically hug the coast on I-90/I-84/I-95 through the major cities of the northeast corridor: Hartford, New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore. There is certainly no shortage of things to see and do in each of the cities you'll be passing through and this might suit you best since you had planned originally on spending some time in New York City, which would be roughly halfway between Salem and Washington.

    If, on the other hand, you're now looking for something a bit more tranquil, consider staying a bit inland and taking a more relaxed drive. You'd still take I-90/I-84 through Hartford, but then stay on I-84 and bypass New York City to the north. Near Port Jervis NY you'd pick up US-209 southeast through the Delaware Water Gap and beyond to I-81 and the Harrisburg area. There take US-15 south through Gettysburg, picking up I-270 from Frederick MD into Washington. If you go this way, you'd probably want to go farther than halfway on the first day since the second day's roads are a bit slower, maybe make the drive through the Water Gap and spend the night in Stroudsburg PA.

    AZBuck

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default An example of where "less" really is less

    Like Midwest Michael says:
    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Michael View Post
    Motel 6 is consistantly the lowest price chain out there, at least on the sticker price.
    The problem I've always had with Motel 6 is that if you compare Super 8 or even some of the Best Westerns dollar for dollar against amenities you will quickly discover that Motel 6 is costlier than any other motel chain. They charge for extra towels, blankets, internet access, extra people, etc. They frequently feature the cheapest quality beds and furnishings and never have bath tubs. I've found that the best combination of accomodations versus price is the Holiday Inn Express chain. -- and unlike stale donuts -- the breakfasts are actually quite excellent. This forum is all about providing personal advice and I would never recommend Motel 6.... They do a great job of advertising -- but you can always do better for virtually the same or nearly the same money.

    While doing research for another topic --I found this article about the demise of tubs in motel rooms -- generally I take showers too --

    Mark
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-04-2009 at 04:09 PM. Reason: added a resource link

  7. Default

    Ok, I think we will go with the Days Inn, not the Motel 6's. The route including Gettysburg sounds brilliant, I'll be including that into our route. Thanks so much everyone, brilliant so far :)

    So we are up to Washington now, and Virginia is what we are aiming for next. Should we head down to Virginia Beach and find somewhere to stay there, or are there better places to stay and actually see things other than just a beach?
    I've looked around and most of it has mentioned Chesapeake, but all I can really see is a lot of boatmen. What do you recommend as a must see in Virginia? I got myself a free travel guide, it looks really beautiful, but can't seem to figure out whereabouts the 'main things' to see are.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Let's Cut to the Chase

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucinda
    So we are up to Washington now, and Virginia is what we are aiming for next.
    Your previous post listed over 30 destinations for this trip, and frankly, I'd rather not have to address each of them individually in the detail you've been getting so far. Would you be so kind as to outline just what you now have in mind for the entire trip: destinations, timeline, desires, etc. so that we can answer your questions in a more efficient manner.

    AZBuck

  9. Default

    Wow.. Sorry.

    Arriving in Boston from London on the 10th of June. We have 30 days to do a ''loop'' from Salem down to New Orleans, missing out Texas as we don't have time to do that this time, back round, haven't figured out that half of the loop yet but we want to factor Niagra falls in before we come to the end.

    We are hiring a car, I will still be 20 so Joanne is the main driver.

    Budget of around $6000 for motels/hotels, food and attractions.

    The must see places for us are Salem for the witch history haha, Smoky Mountains, some music in Tennessee, New Orleans for the Jazz (Jo's doing a music production degree so she's desperate to go to New Orleans), I'd love to stop over in Mississippi at the Shack Up Inn.

    Sorry about the virginia thing. I was just wondering if anyone could recommend anything special to do..

    Thanks though.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default main? driver

    We are hiring a car, I will still be 20 so Joanne is the main driver.
    I'm a little curious/frightened of what it sounds like you are planning here.

    If you are under 21, driving a rental car will be pretty much off limits. I don't know of any rental agency that will allow an extra driver under age 21, certainly not without some huge extra fees.

    If you are not on the rental contract and you drive the car, you will essentially be driving a stolen car. That will create all sorts of problems. At the very least any insurance would almost certainly be void, so if you were to get into an accident, you then would become personally responsible for any and all damages you'd cause not only to the car, but to anyone or anything else affected by a crash.

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