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Thread: Pa to Atlanta

  1. Default Pa to Atlanta

    Driving one way from West Chester, Pa (outside Philadelphia) to Atlanta on Sat, July 23, 2016 with NO over night stay. I need advice on:
    1) What time should I leave on Saturday to avoid the most traffic
    2) The best route (s) to take to get their the fastest while avoiding to most traffic

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Safely more important than quick.

    Hello and welcome to RTA !

    That's a lot further than we would recommend travelling in a single day, that's probably a 14 hour day with minimal stops and you can't avoid fatigue setting in. Could you not leave early Friday evening and get a couple of hundred miles under your belt, or better still arrive Sunday morning ? I will let others with first hand knowledge suggest posiible routes although I-85 looks to be quickest.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Traffic really shouldn't be much of a factor - as long as you don't go through Baltimore/Washington. I-76/I-81/I-77/I-85 is the logical route, and it doesn't go through any large cities except Charlotte.

    However, as Dave notes, this is an 800 mile drive which will take a solid 14+ hours in real world conditions. It's also significantly farther than professional drivers are allowed to drive in a single day, because of safety laws. If you could get out of work a little early Friday, and get 3-4 hours of driving in - making it to Maryland or Northern Virginia, it would go a long way toward helping you have a safe trip, and help you not be an exhausted mess when you do arrive at your destination.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Charlotte is not an issue, just take I-485 around the NW side of the city to get from I-77 to I-85. This doesn't go anywhere near downtown, it takes you out by the airport.

    Please heed the safety advice and don't try to do this in one day.

  5. Default

    Thanks All!
    There will be 2 drivers during the trip... But I like the ideas of leaving Friday early PM and getting several hours in..

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Beware the Common Fallacy

    Having two drivers does nothing for either one's mental acuity during a long drive. Both will be sitting motionless in a small box for the same hour-after-hour, mind-numbing drive down the Interstates. And no, a quick cat nap sitting up in a car is not the same thing as a solid eight hours in a dark, quiet, comfortable bed.

    Similarly, if one of the 'drivers' is asleep, then you lose the greatest advantage of having a second pair of eyes, namely to keep tabs on the alertness of the person actually behind the wheel at any given point. If you both start nodding off around mile 650, the second 'driver' is absolutely useless.

    If you can leave Friday evening, especially if you can avoid rush hours in Baltimore and Washington by heading over to I-81 via the PA Tpk, or US-30, then somewhere in the Harrisonburg VA area would make a good target for that first night, putting Atlanta within reasonable reach for Saturday's effort, even if you were to sleep in a bit and start the second day's drive truly rested.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 05-25-2016 at 11:38 AM.

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