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  1. Default Help! San Fran - Yosemite - Vegas

    I would first like to say how impressed with this website I am and how insightful each persons post are. Okay, so here is the dilemma. For my fourth anniversary for my girlfriend I booked a trip that she doesn't know about. I am an outdoors man whom always wanted to see Yosemite, and she is more of a pool/beach girl. So, I tried thinking of a way to kill two birds with one stone. I booked a flight from pit to San Francisco on June 16th so we can see Yosemite, and I booked a flight leaving Las Vegas so she can stay at Mandalay bay(best pool in vegas) on June 23rd.

    Issue # 1 = The one way car rental is outrageously expensive. Any
    suggestions on cutting transportation costs?

    #2 = I would love to hear feedback from people who are familiar with the trip as to how I should plan this trip out or what they would do on what days if they were me. Our flight doesn't come into SFO until late on the 16th (so the 16th is a wasted "day").


    Thanks!! Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default Check again

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I think you either need to spend some more time looking for car rentals or you just don't have a very realistic view of how much it costs to rent a car. While a drop off fee is fairly standard, its usually quite small or even non-existent for trips between SF, Vegas, and/or LA. In fact, I just did a quick look at one company (budget) and doing a one way trip to Vegas during your time line costs only $30 more total than a round trip from SFO.

    What are you finding for rates and what were you expecting to find?

  3. Default Car Rental

    Thanks for the quick response Michael. Part of me thinking that is expensive is I booked a car through Enterprise last year in Phoenix (at Phoenix International Airport). I rented it for 6 days and it was just over 200.00, because of the free weekend coupon I had. I guess I was looking for an easy answer to avoid paying 400-500 dollars for a rent-a-car. Maybe just little suggestions like stay at a certain place and take a bus to Yosemite or a train. Any suggestion would be helpful. If there is no easy way, I will have to suck it up and pay for the car, and thanks for the post though Michael.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,749

    Default An option.

    Hi,

    Issue # 1 = The one way car rental is outrageously expensive. Any
    suggestions on cutting transportation costs?
    If you want to spend a couple of days in SF you can certainly get around the city and piers without a rental car so you could pick the car up on the 18th [possibly] saving a couple of days rental. The Bart system is good and will get you from the airport to downtown. While there you could visit Union Square, China town and have a nice evening on Pier '39. The trip to Alcatraz is a good tour and can be booked in advance if you wanted to go [recommended].

    You could save further costs by dropping it of as you arrive in Vegas, you won't need it if you are staying in the Strip area, so you could be looking at a 3 or 4 day rental depending on how you divide your time.

    #2 = I would love to hear feedback from people who are familiar with the trip as to how I should plan this trip out or what they would do on what days if they were me.
    Personally I would do it something like this;

    If you left SF on the 18th you could hit Yosemite by early afternoon and explore the Valley floor and stay the night and 19th explore the high ground. Take a drive up to Glacier point and then head across the Sierra's on the scenic Tioga pass [hwy120] and South on the 395 and stopping overnight on route somewhere depending on time[and your final itinerary].
    On the 20th you can drive across Death valley on the 190 and 160 from Pahrump to Vegas using the locals route. Death valley junction to Pahrump on the State line/Ash Meadows rd]. It's an amazing landscape and you could spend a night here or head for the bright lights and have a couple of full days in Vegas before your flight home.

    That's certainly the route I would take but how you want to divide your time to fit your needs is up to you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default reverse

    Well, one other option to think about looking at would be to see how much rental rates from Las Vegas to San Francisco. Since car rental rates can vary so much, its entirely possible that you could find a better price going the other direction. Also, keep checking rates even after you make a reservation, it could become cheaper as you get closer to your trip dates. However, considering you are looking at a rental in peak season, I wouldn't expect to be able to find a deal quite as good as you found in Phoenix.

    There really aren't any good train or bus options that would work to save you any money, at least not that I'm aware of.

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