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  1. #1

    Default Atlanta to San Francisco

    Hi I'm a Norwegian planning a roadtrip with my wife from August 16th to September 12th, landing at Hartsfield-Jackson (booked our plane tickets 10 minutes ago). We have tickets from San Francisco to Boston 12th of Sep, and finally heading back to Norway on 14th of Sep. Grammatical errors should be blamed on my English teacher ore my parents for not making me do my homework, but I appreciate it if you correct obvious and basic errors :)

    We visited USA in early 2009 and went to Washington D.C. (saw the inaguration of Pres. Obama) and New York, driving the distance. Now we are going back, wanting to experience USA and its people, but we need advice!

    So far the only thing we have done is booking the plane tickets, but we have some places that we want to visit. Theese are:

    1. Atlanta (Georgia aquarium is a must)
    2. New Orleans
    3. Houston (My wife is crazy about Houston S.P.C.A that is aired on Discovery Channel :) )
    4. Grand Canyon
    5. Las Vegas
    6. Los Angeles
    7. San Francisco

    The route is set by theese stops, but I am very open to ideas about where to stop in between and what to see and experience. So we have a total of 27 days of travel, and want to make the most of it. We have no problem driving 12 hour stretches in a day, so it can be quite far between stops.

    I am 25, my wife is 24 at the time of our trip. I will be the main driver, but both of us will drive. Will the fee for under 25 driver be the same for an additional driver as it would have been for me as the main driver?

    Also the plan/hope is to rent a convertible (preferably Ford Mustang), but I cant seem to get an offer for it through the large rental firms like Avis, Hertz and Budget. Anyone know of any good way to get such a rental deal, and how much more it will cost than renting a normal standard size car?

    As far as accomodation is concerned I am planning on prebook hotels Atlanta, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and San Francisco to get a good price. Will I save alot on prebooking the rest, ore will I be just as well off booking as we go? I prefer to not prebook everything as we want some freedom in where and when to go.

    I love everything related to science, cars, planes, space, (everything with an engine), and my wife loves animals as well as the things mentioned above (I also like animals, but her passion is in another league :) ), as well as beautiful nature and great historical sites and museums, so we have a quite broad field of interests.

    As you can see I have a lot of questions and would love your feedback and input on where to go and what to see. Really looking forward to this roadtrip, and hope you can help me make it great!

  2. #2

    Default A few words concerning cars.......

    Hello Rearden86,

    Your English is very, very good, by the way.

    It seems as though you and your wife are planning a long and enjoyable trip. I hope it goes well for you.

    Concerning renting a convertible: Don't get me wrong--I love convertibles and I am the proud owner of a 1966 Chevy Impala convertible. The time of year (late summer) and your general route (across the Gulf Coast, all of Texas, NM, AZ, and NV) may combine to make travel in an open car close to unbearable. My neighbor is from Norway, and he suffers in the North Carolina summers, which aren't nearly as hot as in New Orleans, Houston, etc. Most convertibles have air conditioning, so one could readily choose when to "drop the top", but I wonder just how often that might be. That, in turn, leads to "why bother, and why incur the additional expense?".Aside from being in the direct sunlight, the buffeting from the (very hot) wind while on the open highway can exhaust you very quickly. Simply said, a 400 mile day in an open car during summer can be far more fatiguing than in an enclosed air-conditioned car.

    But, you might consider a plan to turn in a conventional car in LA and rent the convertible for the Pacific Coast Highway. On my one trip down the PCH, it seemed that every 3rd or 4th vehicle was a rental Chrysler Sebring convertible.

    Concerning "things to do" related to cars and glimpses of Americana, you'll be traveling during racing season and you are likely to be within a short drive of a local stock car racetrack or dragstrip on most any Friday or Saturday night. A good national listing on a state-by-state basis can be found at speedwaysonline dot com. I expect there would be quite a number of local rodeos going on during the weekends, too. A dirt-track race on a Friday night followed by a rodeo on Saturday evening would be a fun, if dusty, way to see some sights few Europeans see.

    Have fun with the planning and the RoadTrip!


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

    Default Thousands of options.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    As well as Foy's well made points about car rentals, you will notice that every major rental company uses the term 'or similar' when displaying types of rental. This means that you are not guaranteed an exact make and model, just a car in that class at the very least. [Upgrades are possible].

    I would take a good look around the forums and other Roadtrip planning pages above for ideas that appeal to you and your interests. The Southwest offers some incredible scenery and a relatively large number of National parks within reach. From the Grand canyon you could head North through Page to Utah's Bryce canyon and Zion NP's and then head South to Vegas on I15. From Vegas you could head across Death valley and North to Mono lake and across the Sierra's on Tioga pass [CA120] into Yosemite NP, a true gem of a place ! If you continues to San Fran and then South to LA along the coast around Big Sur, the Ocean would be on your side of the road.

    As you continue with your planning and new questions come up, just ask. Enjoy the planning !

    Edit [Just noticed you have plane tickets from SF booked but if time allows, you could still include Yosemite and possibly Sequoia NP either before LA [as described above] or heading inland from LA.]
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 02-02-2011 at 10:35 AM. Reason: Added comment.

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