Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. Default Route 66 Help

    Hi my girlfriend and I are looking to travel Route 66 this summer. We are going to take a month and drive from Buffalo to LA on route 66, then take a tour of the norther states on the way home, hitting up Yellowstone National Park and Mount Rushmore. I have never done a big road trip like this before and I am looking for some budgeting help. So far here is what I have.

    Subaru Impreza TS
    16 gal
    29 mpg
    300 miles per tank
    22 tanks for entire trip @ $4.00 per gallon
    $1408 fuel for trip

    Food: Assuming I will be taking my charcoal grill with us, which means we will plan on cooking a majority of the time, we are planning on budgeting about $800 on food.

    Lodging: This is where the biggest question comes in. We are looking at probably camping. We are really tight for money on the trip, so we hope this is where we can make up some of the cost. I have been looking into camp sites and they are around $20 per night. I was almost considering just staying in cheap motels along the way, figuring maybe $50 per night. Does that sound about right? Or am i really undershooting the price. I figured for lodging about $1,500

    This would bring our total budge for the trip to around $4,000. What do you think about this. Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2

    Default Just my thoughts

    Assuming you take the whole 30 days, your estimate for both gas and lodging should be sufficient. The trip will be between 6000-7000 miles. Let's hope that gas is below $4.00 per gallon and that is open to debate.

    So far as lodging, to stay under 50 a night, do not stay in either Chicago or LA. Their prices are much higher. If you check a guide book such as "EZ66 Guide for Travelers" by Jerry McClanahan you will find period motels that will be more in the range of 35-45 a night.

    I do question your estimate for food. That works out to $13.00 a day per person. I am positive you can eat at the diners for 6-8 each but that is only one meal a day. And that does not count snacks. Grilling out can be a nuscience especially if it is raining. Another thought is to take a one-burner hotplate and a pot or two. Then you can cook and cleanup in the motel room. Be sure to buy supplies at grocery stores and not at convenience stores.

    You have not included any incidentals such as entrance fees to national parks, suviniors(sp.), and such. Personally, I think you need to have say $5,000 to make the trip an enjoyable one.

    Remember the journey is more important than the destination

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

    Default Low estimates

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    I agree that you are being just a little too optimistic on your estimates.

    For example, you've figured about 6600 miles, but I think you'll be looking at close to 6000 miles just covering the point to point distance. When you factor in driving in towns, parks, etc I'd bet you end up driving at least 7000+ miles.

    Your food budget is probably farther off. 2 people at $25 a day really isn't much. If you were religiously sticking to eating all of your meals off of a grill, you could make do, but I'm thinking you'll stop at a few restaurants/diners/cares along the way - I mean that's part of the fun of RT-66! Eating out even a couple times a week would start to burn a hole in your food budget pretty quick.

    And as was mentioned, you really haven't factored in any extra money for other expenses. Odds are, you'll find at least a few things that you'll want or need to spend money on along the way.

    I think your budget is close. If you went the camping route, at least for much of the trip, it would be a lot more feasable to stick to that $4000 figure. If you do everything as you've laid out, however, I think your actual expenses will end up creeping over your budget amount.

  4. Default

    do you really recommend $5000 savings for the entries etc?

    We're doing a month in the USA, driving 66 from LA to chicago, then going to NY for a few days and disneyworld in Orlando for a week. We have budgeted $10,000 spending money which should cover food/attractions etc. Lodging and transport is not included in this.

    Do you think we have budgetted enough?


  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default I think so

    We're recommending $5000 total for all expenses for two people over the course of a month, that includes gas, lodging, food, and extras.

    If you've got $10k for food and extras, I think you'll be fine.

  6. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by scotishbob View Post

    You have not included any incidentals such as entrance fees to national parks, suviniors(sp.), and such. Personally, I think you need to have say $5,000 to make the trip an enjoyable one.


    Do you know anything about camping along the way? Is that something to look into?

    As far as motels go. Do you recommend making reservations in advance, or can you pretty much drive up to one and have a place to sleep? What are conditions like in the motels along the way?

  7. #7

    Default Can't comment on camping

    Unfortunately, I am being a bit old of camping on a road trip. I prefer the comfort of a bed at night (acutally, my back has seen better days--i used to camp extensively).

    I recommend not making motel reservations in advance. When you do, you are pinning yourself down to being in a specific location on a specific day. There are too many variables for that on an extended trip.

    I stay in period motels along 66 (particularly in small towns) and have found all to be comfortable and clean and cheap with most in decent parts of town.


  8. Default Camping links

    You can find great links on budget lodging on this thread.

    I bookmarked it for my trip planning.
    Last edited by AZBuck; 04-13-2008 at 07:58 PM. Reason: Preferred link format

  9. Default Route 66 Chicago to LA

    Hi, I am planning a trip from Buffalo, NY to LA. The trip will last 3 weeks. I want to take Route 66 on the way there, but on the way back go through the north to see Yellowstone and Mount Rushmore. Here is a copy of my tentative itinerary. I say tentative because we have no reservations to stay anywhere.

    Missouri St. Louis
    Springfield Jun 16, 2008
    Oklahoma Tulsa
    Oaklahoma, City
    Texas Amarillo Jun 17, 2008
    New Mexico Albuquerque
    Arizona Flagstaff Jun 18, 2008
    North Rim Grand Canyon June 19 - June 20
    Utah Zion National Park Jun 21, 2008
    Bryce Canyon
    Arizona Flagstaff/Phoenix Jun 22, 2008
    California Los Angeles Jun 23 - June 24
    Sequoia National Park
    Kings Canyon Jun 25, 2008
    Yosemite National Park Jun 26, 2008
    San Francisco June 27 - June 29
    Redwood Forest Jun 30, 2008
    Redding Jul 1, 2008
    Idaho Twin Falls Jul 2, 2008
    Wyoming Yellowstone National Park Jul 3, 2008
    South Dakota Rapid City/Souix City Jul 4, 2008
    Illinois Chicago Jul 5, 2008

    Now I am getting really concerned with the time nearing that we have not made reservations. Is this a bad idea? We have been told that we should have no trouble finding places to stay but I am just really nervous about it. Any words of advice? I am especially nervous when we get to the national parks. Will there be places to Stay there is we do not get a camping site? Any help to put my mind at ease would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 06-12-2008 at 04:53 AM. Reason: Merged with Original Thread

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Cardiff, Wales, UK


    I did the length of Route 66 last year and only booked 4 stops in advance from a 3 week trip - Blue Swallow Motel, Big Texan Steak Ranch, Vegas, and Grand Canyon. Finding a motel to stop at was never a problem as they are so frequent.

    I'd recommend a night at the Big Texan if you can. We stayed there on a friday night and it was packed and bouncing - good beer, good food and good entertainment.

    At worst and you can't find an obvious motel just ask someone and they'll point you in the right direction.

    Also, as has been mentioned before regarding your budget, I too didn't factor in just how much I'd end up having to spend on admission fees or tickets to small museums or attractions.

    Enjoy the trip,

Similar Threads

  1. Phoenix to Chicago route advice needed
    By mikeh002 in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 08-01-2010, 03:33 PM
  2. Chicago to LA (Route 66)
    By stanthecaddy in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 27
    Last Post: 09-22-2008, 01:40 AM
  3. Chicago to Los Angeles on the north route
    By Steve Fitz in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-14-2008, 10:31 AM
  4. Quickest/Best Route L.A. to Chicago
    By grant34 in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 09-18-2007, 11:48 AM
  5. NYC to Chicago to Route 66
    By MustangMatt in forum Spring RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-05-2007, 09:11 AM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts