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  1. Default Only a week to go!

    So I thought I would just start a thread about our trip that we are about to start.

    We are from the UK and have been planning this trip for the last few months. I'm 23 and my brother 21 and have had a lot of experience of Florida, due to a family holiday home, but not much more of the rest of the states. My brother worked in Nashville for 9 months last summer so he has plenty of contacts around that area. The guy he lived with has now moved to West Orange NJ so we are flying into Newark next Tuesday.

    Initially we had planned to have his friend buy us a car in his name and him to register it for us but after much research on this site and others we didn't see this to be viable. After reading some posts on this site we finally managed to get a reasonable car hire quote. So for three months we have a Chevy Uplander.

    We could have hired something more iconic like a mustang or charger for less money but realistically the space is worth more to us. One of the other reasons for hiring a car is that we can get a more reliable, newer car for the money that is hopefully going to give us less problems.

    We are planning a mixture of camping, hostels and motels as well as get in touch with some people who have done similar routes.

    Our initial plans are to drive from NYC to Nashville where we will stay for about a week. In Nashville we are picking up a friend who will be coming with is to San Antonio TX where we will going via Mephis, New Orleans and Houston. Once in San Antonio we will be staying for about a week or so we our friend. We hope that by this time we will be able to assess whether our planning is accurate in terms of time scales of the driving etc. We will then head over to the west coast.

    I will try to keep this thread as updated as much as possible as well as the blog that I will post.

    I have one question that I need advice about. We are planning on taking a laptop to keep in contact with home as well as having the internet. In the UK we have USB sticks that allow an internet connection. Is this something that I will be able to buy once we get to the States? The other option is to take the Iphone 4 and tether the internet. In the States are you able to buy a SIM card without buying a phone like we can in the UK?

    Thanks in advance

    Chris & Nick
    Last edited by AZBuck; 09-13-2010 at 07:31 AM. Reason: Whitespace added; Commercial links removed

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Your least expensive and easiest way to stay connected is with wifi. There is plenty available these days.

    Aircards and cellular accounts generally require contracts and a legitimate billing and service address. Pay as you go cellular phone plans generally don't include data and/or tethering.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default WiFi

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Just to expand a bit on glc's comment. WiFi really is fairly universally available and most laptops come with a built in WiFi card these days. Unless you plan to want/need(?) connectivity while driving paying for a satellite card is probably not worth the expense. Most motels/hotels offer some form of access free with your room, most McDonalds and Starbucks locations offer the service, a few cities are starting to install WiFi throughout their area, and if all else fails nearly all local libraries offer free internet access and even computer terminals.


  4. Default

    Ok guys thanks.
    This does sound like a much better idea and then just get a cheap pre pay phone for emergencies.
    I'll keep you updated.


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


    I'd agree that with free wi-fi available so easily, that's going to be the cheapest option.

    However, if you really want to be able to be connected everywhere, there are starting to be some pre-paid wireless services that are starting to get more reasonable in price. Virgin Mobile, for example, has a $40/month unlimited plan where you can connect via 3G networks. The only downside is the USB hardware is a little expensive at $80. But for temporary internet on the go, that's not bad.

    added: An in an ironic twist, after writing this, I've noticed that one of the banner ads at the top of this page is a Virgin Mobile ad promoting that very service....
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 09-13-2010 at 10:53 AM. Reason: added info

  6. Default


    All is going well. We are currently about 1500 miles in and staying with friends in Nashville TN.

    Have managed to sort out the car from which went through National and we have a Chrysler Town & Country touring which is great for our needs. The camping is going great as well, only problem is sometime trying to find if they take tents and not just RV's.

    Here are a few pictures so far.

    This map shows the route we have taken to Nashville, via the Great Smokey Mountains, and then onto our next stop in San Antonio TX.

    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 10-05-2010 at 03:44 PM. Reason: Added map.

  7. Default

    Again we have put some miles under our belt. In San Antonio we had to swap the car as it needed the oil changing but that was no problem.
    We have done lots of the west coast and im currently sitting in my hotel room at the MGM Grand in Vegas. This is our only hotel stop of the trip. We are half way through and have covered just short of 6k miles. If anybody has any questions about any of the locations we have visited then fire away.
    here is an up to date google map.


    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 11-03-2010 at 02:03 AM. Reason: Map display

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Nice pics.

    Glad you guy's are having a great trip, thanks for the updates !

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