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  1. Default Vancouver to L.A.? Traveling Teen

    I'm a teenager (will be 17 at the time of travel) and would like to go from Vancouver and road trip down to L.A. with a friend over our 2 week spring break. I'm struggling to find hostels that let minors check in by themselves, though. Also, any tips for traveling, cost saving, getting there and back, and general suggestions would be great! Not too many criteria, we don't plan on visiting a whole lot of tourist-y stuff, we mostly just want some time to travel down the coast. I'm not exactly sure where to start planning such stuff. Let me know your experiences!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,067

    Default

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    The reality is that it is very difficult to make a trip like this until you are 18. There are very few hotels, hostels, or really any other lodging option that will allow you to rent a room - or even stay with an unrelated adult. It is simply too much of a liability risk for them. Camping might be an option, although even there, not every campground will allow it.

    Of course, there are lots of other potential issues of traveling as a minor. You've got to think about things like curfew laws. If you had even a minor accident, you can't authorize your own care, and really there are a whole bunch of other potential problems because of your age.

    While I'm sure you don't want to hear it, waiting another year for this trip could very well be your best bet. That doesn't mean you should look to make a trip, but a smaller trip, closer to home, really could be much more managable and just as enjoyable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Your passport?

    On top of what Michael has mentioned, my question is, do you actually have your own passport, or are you still - as a minor - on your parents' passport. You might find that lodging etc is not all to worry about. You may not even be allowed to leave Canada or enter the USA until you are 18.

    Lifey

  4. Default

    I actually have an American passport, i was born in the states. If i waited 3 months for my 18th birthday, would it be easier to go, and take my friend with me? if we waited the three months my friend would still only be 17.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    If either of you are not yet 17, medical care is difficult.....I experienced this when I went to college before I turned 18!!!!! You may possibly be fine and not need the care, but if you did, you'd be up a creek. I'd go along with Lifey and say, give it another year. It can wait.


    Donna

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Issues Would Still Remain

    Even if you wait until you are 18 and your friend is still only 17 problems will remain. Let's be blunt. You haven't told us the sex of either you or your friend. Let's assume the worst case scenario, that you are male and your friend is female. In that case you will technically be guilty of violating the Mann Act, an arcane bit of American law that defines what you want to do as statutory rape. Thus the difficulty in finding lodgings. No innkeeper who values staying in business is going to rent you a room. Even if you are both of the same gender, neither you nor your friend will be able to authorize any medical treatment for him/her. And all that's assuming you're even let into the US when transporting a non-relative minor. This is a trip that probably needs to wait.

    AZBuck

  7. Default

    Alright, thanks for the input guys! I think if we did go, we'd be looking for youth hostels. This is starting to look like it needs to wait, but with me being a year ahead, it's not likely we'd get the chance after next year because of university differences. Thanks for your input. do you think it would be easier to stay inside Canada, then?

    (And AZBuck, close, with me being the female. We aren't a couple or anything, just friends who'd both like to travel and get the hell out of our small town for a week)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,067

    Default

    With hostels, it's pretty much a sure thing that you'll have to wait until you are both 18. That's the minimum check-in age at nearly all of them. Remember, with hostels, you're checking in individually.

    Motels will be difficult too, regardless of gender, because many don't want an unrelated minor staying with an 18 year old guest. There may be some that allow you to stay - since there will be someone who is 18 and has a credit card deposit - but it could be hit or miss.

    Staying inside Canada could be helpful, but the bigger thing is really staying closer to home. You could still very well have the same lodging issues to overcome, but at least the other more stuff is much easier to deal with when a parent/guardian is 100 miles away as opposed to 1000.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default See your home country first.

    Sure, stay in Canada. How much have you seen of British Columbia? it is a beautiful Province, as is Alberta. You could spend months travelling there without ever visiting the same place twice.

    Lifey

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,546

    Default

    Have you thought about camping, and staying within British Columbia? There are some gorgeous national parks, nice provincial parks, all with good camping facilities. You could stay within 100 miles from home, and still have a parent by phone if something happened. Most of the time, campgrounds aren't going to scrutinize two teenagers unless you are causing problems.


    Donna

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