keeping the costs low
I am planning a 2 or 3 month roadtrip in the summer of 2002, from florida to new england, via california! I will possibly be travelling alone. I live in The Netherlands but will have a friend's car at my disposal in the US for the summer. So no probs for transport, but where do i sleep at night? Options are: motels, hostels, campsites etc. Hotels are just too expensive, I have no experience with hostels (sharing rooms with 10 other people?), and I have never been camping either. Nevertheless hostels and campsites will definitely be more within my budget, and i don't really mind roughing it. I don't even mind sleeping in the car occasionally, but is it safe? Is it, for example, a good idea to park your car on a campsite and just sleep in the car? Is that even allowed? Are there other safe places to sleep in the car, but that are free? I hope someone has some good advice.
Don't sleep in your car. You are not from America, you may choose the wrong area, if your car were to be robbed while you are in it, it could very well ruin your trip.
Try the hostel and camping route. Hostels not only offer dorms where you share rooms with 10 others, alot of them offer private rooms, a good place to find hostels is at http://www.hostels.com check your joining the Hostel program in the Netherlands at http://www.njhc.org - as you look at hostels, you'll see they cost between $8 and $20 a day depending on private room or dorm, you'll also find some great locations of hostels, such as Chloride, Arizona an old mining town between Flagstaff and Las Vegas. Do your research, you'll have lot's of fun.
The cool thing about hostels for single travelers, is that most people in U.S. hostels are Europeans, you'll relax easier, hostels typically have clothes washing facilities - very important after being on the road for about 7 days.
Alot of campsites in summer are sold out early in the day, especially on weekends, you can arrange to stay at hostels across America in advance online. If you'd like to add camping to some of your stops, check at http://www.reserveusa.com for online camping reservations - I highly recommend having your reservations before hand as you may have a real difficulty finding a campsite late in the day for a good distance in some places in the west.
Finally, if you are going to travelling for at least 60 days, only drive between 100 and 150 miles a day (160 km to 240 km), if possible, stop, look, listen and take a moment to talk with people here, most Americans know someone who was or is in the Army or Air Force in Germany, Germany being in Europe, and you being from Europe all equals a certain 'cool' factor, take advantage of it....on second thought talk with elderly women primarily, single men are kinda weird.
Take care and safe road-tripping,