Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 45
  1. #1

    Default Which car to rent?

    Newbie here!

    I'm trying to decide which car to hire for our upcoming road trip. It's a 5 weeks trip starting late September (taking in places like Las Vegas, Yellowstone, Badlands, Rocky Mountains, Grand Canyon, ...).

    We've always thought of getting an SUV for the comfort while driving, but now we're having to decide what size.

    The intermediate SUV states it's a Ford Escape or similar. I'm worried that the trunk size may be too small (we're talking 1 medium suitcase and probably 2 duffel bags and some bits here and there like a back pack, 2 folding chair, ...).
    It's just the two of us travelling.

    The standard SUV is a Jeep Grand Cherokee or similar. The trunk is a bit big bigger, 35 cubic feet vs 31 cubic feet according to the info I can find online on the latest models. But I can't quite imagine how much difference that really makes. However, it costs about $300 more for the 5 weeks and obviously the MPG is worse.

    The info on the car rental website says that for the intermediate it would fit 2 suitcases, the standard would fit 4.

    I think the bigger one might be more comfortable, being able to leave things in the boot and not on the back seat and all... Also, if you want to take a quick nap along the way, you can actually put your seats down completely.
    And I would on the one hand like the big car

    But would it really make a big difference, worth the price difference (bearing in mind this is a very expensive vacation already and $300 plus the higher fuel cost is still a considerable amount of money)?
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 05-06-2011 at 07:35 AM. Reason: Removed color

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default plenty plus

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I'll tell you that I've basically got an Escape and it has plenty of room for 3-4 adults and a weeks worth of camping gear. If you are arriving by plane, I simply can't imagine that you could bring enough luggage with you to fill up the trunk area of any SUV!

    If cost is an issue, any medium to standard sized sedan will also work just fine, typically cost significantly less than an SUV, and will frankly have a better, smoother ride than an SUV.

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks for the quick reply Michael!

    I think you'd be surprised at how much stuff I can take along... ;-) Although I will seriously try to restrict myself. Our camera bag alone tends to weight a ton!

    I did consider the standard size sedan, especially as I know that in US they tend to have bigger trunks than over here in the UK. But the husband likes the high position you're in when driving an SUV and he finds the position more comfortable for his back (and trust me, that is worth a lot in his case).

    I did also notice that the intermediate doesn't mention cruise control on any of the websites, whereas the standard does. What are the chances of getting a car without cruise control really? Usually when we come over for shorter trips, we just tend to hire the cheapest car and 75% of the time even those tend to have cruise control.
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 05-06-2011 at 08:46 AM. Reason: removed colour.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,747

    Default 'Needs' and 'wants'.

    I think you'd be surprised at how much stuff I can take along... ;-) Although I will seriously try to restrict myself
    It will be costly at the airport if you don't ! ;-)

    But would it really make a big difference, worth the price difference (bearing in mind this is a very expensive vacation already and $300 plus the higher fuel cost is still a considerable amount of money)?
    I did consider the standard size sedan, especially as I know that in US they tend to have bigger trunks than over here in the UK. But the husband likes the high position you're in when driving an SUV and he finds the position more comfortable for his back (and trust me, that is worth a lot in his case).
    No you won't need an SUV to get around or to fit all your gear in, but if it's what you want then only you can make the final decision based on budget and pros and cons, including Hubbies bad back !]

    If you are planning on going in late Sept I would make getting to Yellowstone a priority as winter can [and usually does] come early. Arriving by Mid September could be a better time to start if possible, as come October you can start to see a higher risk of weather disruption in RMNP as well.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Southwest Dave View Post
    It will be costly at the airport if you don't ! ;-)


    No you won't need an SUV to get around or to fit all your gear in, but if it's what you want then only you can make the final decision based on budget and pros and cons, including Hubbies bad back !]

    If you are planning on going in late Sept I would make getting to Yellowstone a priority as winter can [and usually does] come early. Arriving by Mid September could be a better time to start if possible, as come October you can start to see a higher risk of weather disruption in RMNP as well.
    Due to work, we can't start the trip any earlier. I wish we could have, as it's a trip to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary which is actually on the 1st of September, but hey, something has got to pay for it all, hence the late start. We'll be in Yellowstone early October, we'll actually be staying at the Old Faithful Inn the last 2 nights that it is open. I'm fully aware of the possibility of snow around that time! The Old Faithful Inn was one of the one places we definitely wanted to stay at so booked that as soon as I knew the dates. We'll be going for one of the Old House bedrooms, I love the look of those.
    RMNP is at the moment on the "optional" list. We will be passing through Denver (work commitment), but not sure yet if we'll actually do RMNP. Currently, the schedule has us in Denver for 16 October, which I read is about the time of the first snowfall in that area.

    As for the airport, the 5 week road trip isn't the only part of the vacation. We already know we'll have 3 bags to check in, which means we have to pay for 1 extra one, which is only about $30 and it's only for 1 flight. We're ok with that. We have a friend in Las Vegas, where we'll start the road trip and we can leave a bunch of things behind there that we won't need on the road trip.

  6. #6

    Default

    PS: thank you for the friendly welcome!
    Been looking at this site since we started planning the trip and it has already been invaluable. I guess now that things are actually starting to come together I'll be posting more often!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,747

    Default

    I guess now that things are actually starting to come together I'll be posting more often!
    The planning is part of the fun! If you can make it into RMNP, it sure is a great place ! Even if the Trail Ridge Road across the high ground of the park were to close, there is still quite a bit to explore around Estes park such as along Bear lake road and the various trail heads and lakes. October can be lovely around these parts. There is much to do and see between Denver and Vegas, if it is a round trip back to Vegas that is. Just some of the National parks are Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce, Zion as well as the Grand canyon, then you have places like the Colorado National monument and Monument valley.

    When you have new questions just ask them in this thread, enjoy the planning !

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Southwest Dave View Post
    The planning is part of the fun! If you can make it into RMNP, it sure is a great place ! Even if the Trail Ridge Road across the high ground of the park were to close, there is still quite a bit to explore around Estes park such as along Bear lake road and the various trail heads and lakes. October can be lovely around these parts. There is much to do and see between Denver and Vegas, if it is a round trip back to Vegas that is. Just some of the National parks are Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce, Zion as well as the Grand canyon, then you have places like the Colorado National monument and Monument valley.

    When you have new questions just ask them in this thread, enjoy the planning !
    All of these are on the list and schedule!!!

    The schedule at the moment has a day and a half in RMNP, but not set in stone just yet, it will depend on how meeting up with other people further down works out. I will try to keep it in for sure!

    I'm stupidly excited about this. Doing a road trip through the USA has been our dream vacation since we got together. We originally wanted to do all states in 1 go, but the amount of time you'd have to take off from work and the cost, meant this isn't a realistic option, at least not until we retire.
    Started planning this trip last year. Doing a lot of reading and research. We had quite a different route planned first, but decided it would be too many miles, too much see and do and only 6 weeks. Did a bit of reworking and now we're pretty much set. I love planning vacations, so planning one like this, I'm over the moon!
    The trip will end in LA, although getting there will probably just be straight from Las Vegas, with little or no detour. It was a bit of an afterthought to add it to the trip, but it saved us a ton of money on the flight back home to England (rather than going from Vegas), so was worth it. And on the plus side, we have a bunch of friends there so it will be great to meet up with them.

  9. #9

    Default Standard or Fullsize

    Hi.Some good ideas on the site.
    Im doing two one-way trips in mid-late June with wife & 10yr old. Wondering which vehicle type is the best in terms of viewing out. Both have room for us & gear, and very close in price (National)
    8days LA - SanFran via KingsCanyon/Yosemite and 6days Jackson to Spokane, via Yellowstone.

    So longish trips and the first will be in the hills a lot. Is the larger engine in fullsize going to be an advantage against the possibly harder parking?

    Would consider a small SUV (+$80/trip) if others thought it to be noticably better viewing, particularly from the back seat. some sedans sit very low at the back. What chance of a good deal on an upgrade at LAX ?

    Thanks

  10. #10

    Default To RV or not to RV?

    When we first start planning our road trip we looked into getting an RV for the trip, but quickly noticed it would be quite a bit more expensive than hiring a car and sleeping in hotels along the way.

    Yesterday I was browsing this website again and read some of the articles on RV road trips and followed the link to the cruiseamerica.com website and noticed they have a special offer on. Now with this special offer, the RV becomes a lot more interesting again. All in all, it levels the playing fields financially. So now we're wondering if we'd want to do the trip by RV. We've read all the pros and cons on the website here and I think we'd want to do this way but we have a few concerns.

    The road trip will start late September in Las Vegas and goes up via Zion NP, Bryce Canyon, ... to Grand Teton NP and Yellowstone NP by early October. We've got 2 nights booked at the Old Faithful Inn for 7 and 8 October. Afterwards, we head to Mount Rushmore and Badlands before heading south again to Denver and Rocky Mountain NP around mid October. Then we go to Arches NP, Canyonlands, Monument Valley and the Grand Canyon. We arrive back in Las Vegas after 29 or 30 days of road tripping.

    The concerns:
    Will an RV be ok in Yellowstone, RMNP, ... that time of year?
    Are RV's a more likely target for theft (I mean, not the whole RV, but being broken into)? If you park somewhere and go out for a hike or whatever...
    We're newbies, never driven an RV (biggest thing the husband has driven is a removal van). I've never even been on a campsite. When you rent these, do they come with an instruction manual, do you get a little induction course, ...? Basically, are we overthinking this and is actually really simple and straightforward?

    Moderator Note: Please keep all of the questions about the same trip in the same thread. I also moved this to the "Fall" section as it seems to fit better here.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 06-18-2011 at 06:25 AM. Reason: Merged/Moved Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name

    Loading...



  • MORE STORIES