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  1. Default From New York to Los Angeles

    Hi everyone,
    I planned to go to the US for Christmas 2011. Firstly, I wanted to spend one week in NYC (from Dec.18st to Dec.25th) and the last week in LA until January 1st. I would have taken a plane to go from NYC to LA. But yesterday, the idea of having a road trip across the country went to my mind.

    . Do you think I could reach LA in 4 days?
    . Would it be a good road trip, not too fast, would I have the time to eat in restaurants along the road or the time to stop to admire the landscape?
    . Also, are the roads safe at this time of the year from NYC to LA? And last question, would this trip be expensive? (cheaper or expensiver than a flight between the two cities).

    I thank you very much for your help and I hope my english is enough understandable.
    I wish you a great day,

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default not for you

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Sorry, but I don't think a roadtrip will be a good choice based on what you've laid out.

    4 days really isn't enough time to do this trip safely even as a speed run, much less a trip where you'd have time to enjoy anything along the way. You'd really need 6 days to do this as a quick trip, and still have time to stop and see a few things along the way.

    While people travel across the country every day of the year, it is quite possible that you'd run into some weather that would delay your trip by a day or two as well.

    As far as costs, if you are traveling solo or even as a pair, flying will be much cheaper. You'll likely spend as much in a one way drop fee alone as you would for airline tickets, and that doesn't include the actual car rental rate, gas, or food and lodging along the way.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Too much.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    It really is a minimum of 5 days to drive from NY to LA and even then you will be on the road for 9-10 hours a day for everyone of those 5 day's. It would allow you a little time to take short breaks to stretch your legs, eat and go to the bathroom and have a little time in the place you stop at for the night, but not much else.

    I am not sure what flights cost, but by the time you have the costs of gas, eating in those restaurants, plus Motel costs, I would think flying will be the cheaper option. If you need to rent a car and drop it off on the other side of the country, that will be another considerable expense.

    The Interstate system is a priority to keep open and traffic moving across the country, however at this time of year you need to consider weather disruption that could see you have to pull off the road for a few hours. Road trips are always fun in my book but, if you haven't got a minimum of 5 days, and 6 would be a whole lot better, flying is the only real option.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    There is one option that only takes 4 days and lets you see some of the country - Amtrak (the train). Advance purchase fares start at about $200, and you will be changing trains once in Chicago. One way airfares start at about $300. Just to rent a car in NY for dropoff in LA is going to cost you at least $1000, maybe closer to $2000. Gasoline for this trip will probably be at least $400.

    To keep things in perspective, it's 3000 miles (5000 kilometers) from NY to LA. Perhaps you have underestimated the size of this country?

    You could also take a bus (Greyhound) - that's also 4 days, advance purchase fares are as low as $150 - but I think I would go crazy being cooped up in a bus that long. At least you can get up and walk around in a train. Buses are also subject to weather delays a lot more than trains are.

  5. Default

    Thanks for your advices.

    I will spend one week in NYC and the other one in LA, with a flight between the two cities. I'll keep in mind the roadtrip for another time...

    Thank you again.

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