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  1. Default Need Help-San francisco to New york with lots of stops!!

    Hi, Just after some advice really.
    My boyfriend and i are arriving in San Francsico on the 12th Oct and leave out of New york on the 23rd Nov.
    We are looking at all the different possibilities of getting round thw uS but would like to do a mixture of flying and driving,

    Ideally these are the places we would like to go:

    San Francisco
    Rocky Mountains-where is best place thats not all the way up to Alberta?
    Las vegas (optional)
    El Paso
    New Orleans
    Possibly Florida with a view to going into Cuba
    Niagara Falls
    New York

    Could you give any advice on time frames between each place to drive (how many driving miles /km, fuel costs, and driving times.)

    Also any places you think we should definately see during our trip?

    Any help would be great

    Which parts would you recommend getting a flight for ( that would save time and not miss too much scenery?)

    Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated as this is our first road trip attempt so are completely out of depth so far!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    Quote Originally Posted by bexren View Post
    My boyfriend and i are arriving in San Francsico on the 12th Oct and leave out of New york on the 23rd Nov.

    Which parts would you recommend getting a flight for ( that would save time and not miss too much scenery?)
    You have a lot on your plate here, so hopefully your budget will allow for this kind of trip. Anyway, other than the desired hop into Cuba, there really isn't any part of this trip that I see absolutely requiring a flight to anywhere. With a month and a half in the time bank, you could get to everyone of those places mentioned. Now, if you wanted to spend significant amounts of time in any one location, that may change the logistics of the trip, but that would be only if you wanted to spend, say, a week in each particular location.

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

    Default more than a plane

    Even though Key West is only 90 miles from Cuba, With the embargo that's been in place for nearly 50 years, its basically impossible to go from Florida to Cuba. Pretty much your only option is to go to Mexico or Canada and catch a flight from there.

    With more than a month, I also don't see any place where you'd need to catch a plane, and I don't think its possible to catch a plane and skip over sections of the US without missing scenery. There are interesting landscapes all over the country.

  4. #4


    I can´t see any reason to fly some stages for doin this trip.

    You have plenty of time for travelling, and a very rough schedule for you can be something like this:

    First: San Francisco for 3 days (get the jetlag out of the brains)

    - Yosemite National Park, stay there for 2 nights.
    - Death Valley National Park, 1 night
    - Las Vegas, 3 nights
    - Grand Canyon, 2 nights
    - Phoenix, 1 night
    - El Paso, 2 nights
    - Del Rio, 1 night
    - Houston, 1 night
    - New Orleans, 3 nights
    - Tallahassee, 1 night
    - Miami, 2 nights
    - Key West, 2 nights
    - Jacksonville Beach, 1 night
    - Atlanta, 1 night
    - Nashville, 2 nights
    - St Louis, 1 night
    - Chicago, 3 nights
    - Toledo, 1 night
    - Niagara Falls, 3 nights
    - Philadelphia, 3 nights

    Finally: New York for some days before you get back.

    Maybe there is an idea to fly from Florida to Chicago. But, you will have a big oneway fee to the car rental company for leaving in Florida when start renting i California, and there will be another big fee when rent from Chicago to New York.

    The trip is around 6500 miles, add 1500 miles for some extra driving.

    With a rental car who makes 20 miles per gallon, you will need 400 gallons of gas. It costs around $4/gallon at the moment, but say $5 to be more safe, and that will be $2000. If you´re from Europe, you will find that extremely cheap.

    I suggest you get a map, and use Google, and starts to find out what´s your interest in a trip like this. There is probably more than one million different sights close to the roads you will go on your trip.

  5. Default

    Thank you evry much for your suggestions,
    Do you know if it would be best to hire a car in Sab fran and drop off in Mew York or would you advise looking at buying a car for the duration of the trip and then possibly selling it before we leave?

    Would it be more advisable to rent for breakdowns etc?

    I will check out what is going to be the best route for us,

    Thanks again

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Rent

    I would go the renting route for this trip. You really won't be on the road long enough to pay for the other costs associated with a buying a car, not to mention buying and selling a car would take up several days of your trip.

    If you buy a car, you'll need to plan at least a few days to find a car, have it inspected, take car of the license, taxes, and insurance, and then find someone to sell it to at the end of your trip. And of course, you'd be responsible for any breakdowns or other problems with the car while you're on the road.

    Renting will get you the car you need quickly, and you'll get a nearly new car that you won't have to worry about fixing.

  7. Default Concerns about driving beginning of winter

    HI again,

    Thanks so much for the advice once again.

    I thought i would point out that whilst there are 2 of us going, there will only be one driver-is this recommended for one person to do all of this?

    Also what will the road conditions for the trip be like Oct-Nov?
    I have read on other threads about the use of snow chains?
    Would this be necessary this time of year or mainly later?

    Also what do you think would be a reasonable price for hiring a car for a 6 week period to pick up in San Fran and drop off in New York?

    The ones i have looked at so far are around $2000.

    The route that has been suggested would fit in evry well with our plans, although we may miss out Florida as this was mainly just to act as a doorway into Cuba, however since this is not accessible from here we may leave this out.

    Also we would like to see the Rocky Mountains at some point-do you think it is worth going up as far as Alberta to take in the Ten Points or do you think there is somewhere as scenic but more along our route-say around Sat Lake City area.

    Thanks in adance for any suggestions, this site is brilliant!


  8. #8


    There is no problem with being one driver. Take a short stop every hour, five minutes is enough, for streching the legs, drink some water, visit a restroom and just breathe. I´ll always do like that when I´m driving long distances, and it works very good.

    The big roads will probably be good. Take a look on the weather channel every day at the motel, and if there is really bad weather coming, try to avoid it. It can be some snow in the north, at the end of your trip, or it might be sunny and 20 degrees Celsius.

    Rent a car will cost something around USD2200 - USD2500 depending on what car you prefer, and what kind of deal you can find including insurances and one way fee.

  9. Default Best scenery West coast or east??

    I have posted an earlier thread for advice on our possible drive form San Francisco to new York.

    Having looked again at our time constraints we now think we would like to drive for the most part but catch some internal flights for the last couple of weeks.

    What i want to ask advice is how far should we try to drive in 4 and half weeks ( we have 6 in total but think if we try to drive the whole way we may not get to see everywhere we want properly)
    Is the best option and more scenic to drive from San Fran through Yosemite, Death Valley, Vegas, down to El paso, Texas, New Orleans,

    Then fly from there to Chicago, then on to toronto, then to New York?

    Basically just want advice on how we should split our time up,

    Is 1 and half weeks long enough for Chicago, Toronto (ant to see Niagara falls) and New York??
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 07-31-2008 at 07:00 AM. Reason: Merged Thread - This is really just a continuation of your previous questions. Please keep them within the same thread.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Plenty of time

    Thirty-one days to go around the country - and if you hop on a plane somewhere in there, you definitely have enough time to get a good feel for the places you are planning on seeing.

    A week and a half for the Chicago-Niagara-New York City section is good, too, though I suspect that no matter how much time you had, you'd want to spend more time in those areas.

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