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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Doral, Florida, United States

    Default help me plan my roadtrip (miami - san francisco)

    Hey guys, i'm planning a roadtrip next year ... i'm finally graduating from college and i want to take a month of to get to know the country and people in the way.

    So far my plan consists in 5 - 7 hour drives from city to city ... couchsurf over night on each city for at least one day ... driving by day - spending the night out - enjoy the next day by getting to know the city - get off next morning.

    this would be the itinerary:

    Miami (Florida) - Gainesville (Florida)
    Gainesville (Florida) - Atlanta (Georgia)
    Atlanta (Georgia)- New Orleans (Louisiana)
    New Orleans (Louisiana)- Houston (Texas)
    Houston (Texas) - Oklahoma City (Oklahoma)
    Oklahoma City (Oklahoma) - Albuquerque (New Mexico)
    Albuquerque (New Mexico)- Phoenix (Arizona)
    Phoenix (Arizona) - Los Angeles (California)
    Los Angeles (California)- San Francisco (California)

    I got to say, i've never been outside florida in my life, so i don't know if these are good cities to visit .. i dont even know what i'm going to do once i get there xD ... i leave that up to destiny

    What do you guys think? suggestions? ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Hi, and Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum.

    What in particular are your interest, that your focus is so strong on cities?

    I suggest that you get a good large map of the US and spend time researching what there is to be seen in the places you plan to visit, and along the routes. (I would start by looking at the A1A and Federal Highway from Miami to Ormond Beach and then 40 to Ocala. A beautiful drive. Was there only a month or two ago.)

    You will find lots of information by reading through the forum, including the roadtrip field reports. If you scroll down the bottom of this page you will see 'similar threads'. Spend some time reading these.... and do this over and over again.

    Are you already a member of Couchsurfing? Have you built up a good list of references. Good references and verification will increase your chances of finding a couch. But you could find that it will get pretty ordinary after a few nights. It would be a good idea to have a reasonable accommodation budget to supplement it. Remember, couchsurfing is not just a free night's accommodation. It is a nice gesture to reward your host / hostess in some way, be it by cooking a meal, bringing a gift or taking the host(s) out to dinner. Or you might prefer to do the washing up or clean the bathroom. Whatever, be sure to reward the generous couchsurfer who offers a bed.

    Enjoy the planning, it is so much part of the trip.

    Last edited by Lifemagician; 10-31-2013 at 04:35 PM. Reason: typo

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

    Default Pre-planning.

    I guess you have already made a start on your budget and your transport mode across the country. A month on the road can be quite expensive and most budgets go over the expected amount, more so if they are tight to begin with. If you are ending your trip on the west coast but not moving there, it would suggest you are renting a vehicle. If this were the case you could be facing 'young driver fees' if you are not 25 years old when you travel and one way drop off fees for the vehicle, when combined they can be significant. If you have your own car and it's a return trip you will need a safety net, funds that will take care of any repairs needed along the way. This can be helped a little by making sure your car is fully serviced and checked over and joining the AAA before hitting the road. If it is a return journey then you should look at planning a different route on the way back and leaving enough time to explore.

    As Lifemagician mentions, it's a case of researching and then researching some more at this point of your planning, but don't worry it's a lot of fun and we are here to answer questions as you go. Open that map and let your imagination run wild for a while, there is so much more than a list of Citys to drive to, check out the small towns, National and State Parks and scenic Byways.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    I have to agree with a lot of what has been said already. This is a trip that certainly can be done, however, there are also some things that stand out.

    First, while all of your drives can be done in a day, several of them are around 500 miles, which is likely to take you more like 8 or 9 hours, rather than 5-7. Still reasonable for a day, but you should keep in mind that online mapping programs assume you never have to stop for food, fuel, or a restroom.

    I would also echo the thoughts that your trip is exclusively focused on cities. There is nothing wrong with that if you love exploring cities, but there is also so much else out there that might make for a more diverse and interesting trip. The Grand Canyon, as one big example, is not far from your route but wouldn't really fit into what you've laid out right now.

    If you do have your heart set on cities and going out partying at night, you might look at spending some nights in more dedicated college towns. For example, instead of staying in Atlanta, you might look at Athens, or instead of Houston, perhaps continue onto Austin or College Station. Just an idea.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Australia


    It looks like you're doing a fairly similar trip to what I am, except in reverse!

    I'll second those above me that say you could use the opportunity to see the grand canyon or other grand places along the way. Considering you're heading from Albuquerque to Phoenix to LA anyway you could go to the south rim on either of those legs, maybe even head through Vegas if it's the Phoenix to LA route. Vegas is definitely a place worth visiting if you are 21!

    I'll be interested to hear where you plan to visit in those cities, sounds we have similar interests in plans for the cities too. Enjoy your trip!

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