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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    12

    Default Another Aussie seeking US adventure!

    We are also a middle aged fit Australian couple hoping to drive across America in late 2011.
    We are taking a cruise from Vancouver at the beginning and hope to take the train across the top of America back from New York at the end.
    We have been down the east and west coasts so we want to see more of the middle. How long would it take us to have a leisurely trip from say Seattle down to the Grand Canyon then more or less wind our way East? Finishing in New York for a week at the end. We do not need C&W music /cowboy stuff. We do like museums and just want to experience the scenery which we see in the movies!!! ( but not hot dry desert we have enough of that here) I want to see the autumn colours and mountains without having to drive over too many! And basically see the countryside/ rural areas.
    Hope that is not too garbled - would four weeks be enough?
    Thanks !

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Timing Is More Important Than Time

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Four weeks is sufficient for the drive you describe, even if the week in New York at the end has to come out of it. What is more critical is when you make the journey. You'll want to be ahead of the snows in the northern Rockies, behind the summer heat and monsoons of the desert southwest, and just in time for the fall foliage as you work your way northeast to New York. The narrowest of those windows is the foliage season in the southern Appalachians. If you can time your trip to be coming north from, say, Knoxville to Washington around the third week of October, that would probably be ideal. That should also mean that you'll be early enough to beat the snows at Yellowstone and late enough to have very pleasant weather in Arizona and New Mexico.

    As for "see[ing] more of the middle", and countryside and scenery, get out your map of the U.S. and find these places: Yellowstone National Park, Grand Tetons National Park, Great Salt Lake, Zion National Park, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Mesa Verde, Hot Springs National Park, Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park, and Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, and that will give you a pretty good idea of what you can see on one possible (~4,200 mi.) route across the country.

    AZBuck

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

    Default Wonderful time to travel.

    Just to add to Buck's great suggestions I would recommend taking a look at the possibility of seeing some more of Utah such as Bryce and Arches NP and heading through Colorado. September into Oct is a great time to travel and the Aspens in Colorado will be ablaze.

    Have a look around the forums and as you build a clearer picture and new questions arise, ask away !

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    12

    Default What a reply!

    Thanks very, very much! That was exactly what I wanted and I will take careful note of what you said!
    Thanks for both replies.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    12

    Default Safety security etc

    Hi my husband and I (Australians) are arriving in US mid September and are travelling for ten weeks seeing as much as we can. We have bought a classic car. My query is this - are we safe to stay in motels along the highways or will the car be stolen on our first night?!! The usual advice to tourists is don't draw attention to yourself. Well, with this car it will be difficult to remain anonymous.This is a lifelong dream of my husband's to drive across America, in what Australians call a "yank tank"! I am very anxious about the safety of doing this while my husband thinks I am being ridiculous. We also hope to stay at caravan park cabins. We have been to the US before, this holiday is to see the country side.We are having a week in NY then down through the eastern states up the Mississippi, across to Yellowstone down through Utah etc to Grand Canyon etc etc then home from LA. We are also intending to fly from somewhere back to New England for a week there, during the autumn colour times. Do you think we will be targetted because of the car? Thankyou

    Moderator Note: Please keep all questions about this trip in the same thread.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 08-07-2011 at 08:31 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Roadtripping in a 'yank tank'.

    Hi, and Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum.

    First you will both have to agree on this. But if it were me, I think I would choose to stay at places which can offer secure parking, or are close to a secure parking facility. It may cost a bit more, but then, what price do you put on the car? Most places you go are quite secure, and I have never had a problem, but then I have only driven very ordinary vehicles. As you said, with a 'yank tank' you are not exactly inconspicuous.

    Much more to the point, would you care to share with us how you went about purchasing the vehicle, which channels did you use and where is it registered and insured?

    Lifey in Melbourne

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Yank Tanks

    I assume that what you've got is a 1950's vintage auto, what (when I had mine in the 70's) I referred to as my "Ike and Mamie showboat". The good news on these is that you are far more likely to garner the interest of other classic car enthusiasts than that of thieves. Remember that professional thieves, the kind who can pick a lock and be gone in under 30 seconds, are interested in resale value, either of the car or its parts. They typically cruise in search of specific late model, high volume cars such as Hondas, Toyotas and the like. There is little incentive to steal a unique, easily recognizable, and hard to sell vehicle. You should be fine just parking your car in well-lit highly visible areas such as around the lobby entry of your motel, etc.

    Otherwise, I share Lifey's curiosity as to how you managed the details of the purchase, licensing and insuring of the car. This is one of the thorniest questions we get here - how can foreign nationals buy a car - and any light you can shed on the subject will be greatly appreciated.

    AZBuck

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    12

    Default Buying classic car for road trip

    Thanks for replies
    we have bought the car and it is being warehoused for us until we arrive. Then we will buy insurance etc when we arrive. We have been assured that the whole procedure will only take an hour. We are spending a few days in the car's home town to check out the car and add some bits and pieces which my husband thinks necessary. We certainly have had trouble getting insurance so are leaving car with seller until we can insure under our name for the trip and the shipping home( we are taking the car back to Oz).Are there any issues which we have overlooked?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,064

    Default

    You mentioned Insurance, which frankly I don't know how you are going to do without a US drivers license (since they are all going to base their rates on your US driving record), but that's just one of the hurdles. The idea that you can do it in an hour is very very suspect, unless you've got someone lined up in advance who regularly deals with providing insurance for non-residents.

    Just as important, is title and registration. That is another thing where you almost always have to have a US drivers license to do. Without registration, you can't legally drive it, and without a title, I seriously doubt you would be able to ship it overseas (selling it would certainly be impossible). You also might not be able to get insurance without the title in your name.

    If you were planning to ship the car immediately, you could probably get by with just a title that's been signed over to you, but that's not going to be good enough to get license plates/registration, which you will need in your name to legally drive the car.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Maybe not overlooked, but the devil is in the detail.

    Quote Originally Posted by SusannaP View Post
    Are there any issues which we have overlooked?
    Susanna, I think there are a lot of issues you appear not to be aware of. My specific questions are:

    1) Did you buy the car privately?
    2) In which State is it located?
    3) In which State will it be registered?
    4) Who gave the assurance that the whole procedure will only take an hour?
    5) To which address will the registration be mailed?
    6) How long will it be after application, before you get this paperwork in the mail?
    7) How long will it be before you get new plates (if applicable)?
    8) Do you know which insurance companies insure vehicles for non-residents?

    May I suggest that you get the answers to these questions before you leave. You would hate to find yourself for the complete four weeks sitting waiting by the car, and still be without. Depending on answers to the above questions, I may have some suggestions for you.

    Anyone can come here and purchase a vehicle, register it and insure it. But in the US they do not treat visitors to their country the same way. I get the feeling that you do not have the slightest idea of just how many hurdles you still need to clear, nor just how high these hurdles may be.

    I am sure that you will not have any problems insuring the car for shipment home, but that will not cover you to travel cross country.

    Lifey
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 08-08-2011 at 05:20 AM.

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