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  1. Default The best road trip I can offer HER!

    Me and my girlfriend plan on going to Los Angeles not this summer but the next. We plan on making it very special, something that we both will enjoy. We live in Kansas City. We want to explore, not go and came back the same way. We are choosing Los Angeles as our destination because we both want to see how it is there to see if we like it because we plan on living there after college. I hope it works out. But back to the road trip. We plan on taking 1 month + so we were wondering how much money it would cost. Not including car rental. Just food, entertainment, gas, and hotel. We want to stay in a not run down hotel. With good quality. We want to visit parks. EXPLORE on our way too and from there. What route is the best way to go. Not to isolated or with bad areas. Is $5000 sufficient? I was thinking up north to San Francisco and then coming down to Los Angeles. I need Ideas. I don't know much about road trips since I have never been on one. Thanks to everyone who has any suggestions.

    ~Javier Carmona

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    8,845

    Default

    To live right, budget at least $100 a day per person, more if you want to eat all your meals in good restaurants, you should be able to guess costs from what it costs you to eat out now (and what you pay for entertainment now). A good quality hotel is going to average $100 a night right there. Figure 15 cents a mile for gasoline, add 20% to the miles on your planned out route for side trips. A national parks pass is $80.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    12,475

    Default estimates

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I'd say a $5000 budget for a month should put you in excellent shape to have a nice time, and splurge here and there. However, its not going to be enough to stay in top of the line hotels and top of the line restaurants on a nightly basis. If you are staying mostly in mid-range hotels and eating mostly at reasonably priced restaurants, I think you'd be in the ballpark.

    As far as best routes, there's just no such thing. As you'll see repeated many times on this forum, roadtrips are special because every one is different. They aren't one sized fits all events that can be neatly tucked into a perfect for everyone itinerary. You simply need to look around (including this forum), get a feel for what the two of you would like to do, and start building an outline of your trip from there. Once you've got the basics down, then you can start asking for ideas to fill in the details.

  4. Default

    In camp grounds are there a lot of people. I'm just paranoid of being alone in a campground... And by the best route I mean. Most enjoyable.. We want to have fun explore. Good sites to visit and a route that takes us back to the start..

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    8,845

    Default

    Campgrounds are going to be pretty crowded in the summer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,195

    Default NP's and camping.

    The National parks website will give you a great insight to all the parks you could visit on this trip as there are to many outstanding places to mention.
    You won't have to worry about camping alone, quite the opposite in fact. If you wish to camp in the parks you will have to book up to ensure you get a spot or gamble on getting there early and getting a "walk in" site.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    12,475

    Default different word, same meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by jcarmona View Post
    And by the best route I mean. Most enjoyable..
    I'm not really sure how "most enjoyable" would be any different than "best" in this case. The point remains the same what is "best" or "most enjoyable" to one person may not be the same for everyone else. Roadtrips just aren't one sized fits all things and you can't approach them like they are. This is where you have to do the work to figure out what is best for you.

    As far as campgrounds go, I tend to be thrilled when I find one where there's no one else around. However, the times when I find one like that in the summer are very few and far between. If you are staying in National Parks campgrounds, or even state parks or private facilities, places being filled up will likely be a much more likely issue.

  8. Default

    How can I reserve spots ahead? Just by calling in?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default Campground reservations

    The national park website that Dave gave you the link for has information on how to rent at the specific parks you plan on visiting.

    Or you can go with ReserveAmerica which allows for reservations at most national parks and other government-run campgrounds through agencies like the Corps of Army Engineers, Bureau of Land Management, etc. You will also often find state and county parks on it as well, but not all states/counties participate. In those cases, you might want to go the state parks website for that particular state to see what you can find. Just google "__name of state__ parks" and it will usually be one of the first links listed.

    Be forewarned that ReserveAmerica charges a booking fee.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,195

    Default Go direct.

    The booking for NPS can be done directly through recreation.gov with no fees. The NPS link I gave you in my previous post has all the info on the parks and location maps etc. to help find where you want to stay. When you have found a campground you want, click to book it and it leads you to the above link or if you have enough info click on the link direct.

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