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  1. #1

    Default Sept 09 trip NYC - LA

    Hi there,

    I'm planning on spending 5 weeks doing a road trip from NYC to LA. First question, is that actually do-able, in that amount of time, with all the places we want to go to in between?!

    There's going to be 2 of us sharing the driving. Wondering if we should hire a car or a motor home, as there will be 3 of us on the trip. I'm coming from England, so I'm going to sort the hiring out side of things from here. Price-wise, motor home is pricier, but then we don't have to pay for accommodation, but then a car can go faster, plus it's easier to drive in cities and park. Can anyone advise over one or the other?

    Our itinerary, and map, is below with the number of days (approx)we plan to spend in each place, including driving time:

    http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=3...,94.130859&z=4

    Arrive 9/5
    NYC 9/5-9/9 - the usual NYC haunts! taking public transport from here to DC
    DC 9/9-9/11 - other than Capitol Hill, anything else to check out here? Again, thinking of public transport from here to Nashville
    Nashville 9/11-9/13 - All things country music! Do-able in a day??
    Lynchburg 9/13-9/13 - Jack Daniels Distillery
    Memphis 9/13-9/16 - I've been here before, and I've also got a friend who lives here

    The next bit is basically just to get us to Seattle so we can do the PCH right from the top. Completely open to any suggestions on a route change, as it looks like it's going to be a VERY long drive!

    Dallas 9/16-9/18
    El Paso 9/18-9/20- It's on the border, so thought it would be an interesting place to stop
    Colorado Springs 9/20-9/22
    Salt Lake City 9/22-9/24
    Yellowstone 9/24-9/26 - would really like to go here, but can always plan another trip!
    Seattle/Olympia 9/26-9/28 - we're all music fans so we'd like to do the K Records tour

    Our plan is to then drive along the coast to LA, head over to Vegas for a couple of days, then back to LA. How long would that roughly actually take??

    Leave 10/10

    Ideally, we would like to take our time with it, and not be rushing through places. But to be honest, and you can probably tell, I have no real concept of just how huge the US is, and if this is going to be possible!

    Also toying with the idea of hiring a big 'ol American car to do the California stretch of the PCH, but have a feeling it's going to cost many, many $s. Is that a certainty?

    We'd like to stay off the main big highways wherever possible, and take the byroads, is it? With a motor home, are there places that you are not allowed to drive them? Are they ok to be parked in cities, if one is lucky enough to find a space that big?

    My boyfriend would also like to catch an ice hockey game. We'd probably do that in LA, so can we go online to get tickets?

    We'd really appreciate any suggestions, comments, places/highlights we really shouldn't miss, and anything else anyone may wish to add.

    Sorry to ask so many questions.

    Thank you,

    natasha x
    Last edited by Mass Tim; 02-18-2009 at 02:57 AM. Reason: Date format

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Western/Central Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,703

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!


    Quote Originally Posted by meiowington View Post

    There's going to be 2 of us sharing the driving. Wondering if we should hire a car or a motor home, as there will be 3 of us on the trip. I'm coming from England, so I'm going to sort the hiring out side of things from here. Price-wise, motor home is pricier, but then we don't have to pay for accommodation, but then a car can go faster, plus it's easier to drive in cities and park. Can anyone advise over one or the other?
    With a motor home there will be fees for accommodations, at campgrounds and such. You could try and find a truck stop or other such large parking place at every stop along your route, but I don't think you'll be able to do that in places such as Yellowstone. At the very least, you're going to need to clean out the facilities every few days.

    Our itinerary, and map, is below with the number of days (approx)we plan to spend in each place, including driving time:

    http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=3...,94.130859&z=4
    This link isn't working for me.

    Ideally, we would like to take our time with it, and not be rushing through places. But to be honest, and you can probably tell, I have no real concept of just how huge the US is, and if this is going to be possible!
    Five weeks is plenty of time to get a good feel for the US. It is roughly five days drive from one coast to the other.

    One issue I see is Yellowstone to Seattle. This is roughly 800 miles, definitely not something you want to try to accomplish in a single day. Dallas to El Paso is about 650 miles, which would be a stretch to do in a single day. El Paso to Colorado Springs - about 650 miles as well.
    Colorado Springs to Salt Lake City - 600 miles.


    Also toying with the idea of hiring a big 'ol American car to do the California stretch of the PCH, but have a feeling it's going to cost many, many $s. Is that a certainty?
    It depends on what you consider many $s. If you want a good large car, then you'd be renting a Cadillac, and that would definitely put you in the upper price range for a rental. Some rental companies do have an odd definition of "large" when it comes in relation to the general population of vehicles, so be aware of that distinction.

    We'd like to stay off the main big highways wherever possible, and take the byroads, is it? With a motor home, are there places that you are not allowed to drive them? Are they ok to be parked in cities, if one is lucky enough to find a space that big?
    For the most part, RVs can go anywhere a regular automobile can go, with the exceptions of low clearance bridges and the like. Parking in the larger, busier cities can be quite difficult to find for a regular car, and chances are the areas with parking will be in a parking garage, unlikely to fit an RV.

    My boyfriend would also like to catch an ice hockey game. We'd probably do that in LA, so can we go online to get tickets?
    Yes, you should be able to do that, though looking at some of last year's schedules, your leaving the country before the season starts.

    Sorry to ask so many questions.
    No need to apologize. That's what this forum is for!

    As an aside, the general date format in the US is mm/dd, whereas you have posted in dd/mm. I've updated accordingly to make it easier for others to follow. Also, you've listed Seattle as being from September 26 to October 28, but I think that was a typo?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,749

    Default Lifestyle choice.

    Hi Natasha and welcome.

    The R.V. is my favorite way to travel but it is for the lifestyle and definitely not a budget friendly choice. With three of you travelling it is almost certainly going to work out cheaper overall hiring a car and using Motels. As Tim has said you will have to pay some campsite fees and by the time you have added extra charges to your R.V. rental such as bedding and kitchen kits, extra mileage charges and probably the largest single factor on such a road trip, fuel costs it tips the balance as you can only expect 10mpg return.

    Do not take to much notice of estimated drive times on mapping programs they do not allow for stops for food, gas bio breaks etc never mind sight seeing. Generally we recommend no more than 550 miles per day [less in an R.V.] that will put you on the road for 9-10 hours.

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