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Road Tripping in the USA!

Discussion in 'Motors' started by [TW]Fox, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. Joe T

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 1, 2003

    Posts: 11,332

    Location: Northampton

    Has anyone drive PCH north of San Francisco up to Seattle? It's supposed to have great scenery and good roads so I was wondering if it might be fun to do in a Mustang or Camaro.

    Might have to do the Interstate over 2 days, then spend 4 days coming back via PCD at an easier pace. With Seattle and San Francisco at each it could be a good trip.
     
  2. The Craig

    Soldato

    Joined: May 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,491

    Location: Warwickshire

    Thanks, mustang now down to £658 for 16 days from us car hire (via enterprise)... I'll have a look next week and then probably just buy it.

    Alternative is something like a rav4 for £413

    I imagine the rates aren't as cheap as previous due to poor exchange rate.

    I also tried looking at paying in $ via my clarity card but wouldn't make it prices better.
     
  3. Peerzy

    Soldato

    Joined: Nov 9, 2008

    Posts: 6,691

    It's not quite the same, with Alamo and National you can pick any car on the lot that is in your class (so you get a choice of Mustang or Camaro and colour). At LAX this usually means there are 10-20 cars to pick from. Hertz assign you a car and if you want to swap (car is tatty, high miles, missing something etc....) you have to go in and queue.


    I don't think paying in USD is a good idea - it'll likely mean you are booking via a US website which won't include any of the insurance extras you'll want and need. Booking via a UK website in GBP is actually almost always a much better deal than US citizens get from their websites in USD.
     
  4. mohawk

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Oct 2, 2007

    Posts: 1,340

    Location: Winchester

    I got the best price when i phoned avis, and basically asked for a better deal and they managed to get it about £75 cheaper than the website!
     
  5. Joe T

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 1, 2003

    Posts: 11,332

    Location: Northampton

    Dont forget if you book direct with a rental company (UK site, obvs) you can often claim cashback via the likes of quidco in the region of 10%. :)
     
  6. VincentHanna

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 30, 2013

    Posts: 18,257

    Anyone know when Disney will open Star Wars Land? It's all very vague considering it's supposed to be this year.
     
  7. b0rn2sk8

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 9, 2003

    Posts: 4,281

    I heard on a podcast it was just after spring break whenever that it. I guess May/June.

    Starwars land will be horrendously busy when it opens, probably a good time to visit the rest of the park! Expect hour +++ lines for all the attractions as it’s brand new.

    Aparantly the wizarding world at universal was crazy busy for the first couple of years.
     
  8. vila

    Hitman

    Joined: Aug 10, 2004

    Posts: 717

    If you've never had a Mustang or a Camero before and like the idea of convertible.... go for it - you'll have fun and you'll be fine. Ive managed to fit 2 suitcases in mustangs camero's and challengers - the Camero has the smallest boot and the challenger the biggest.

    Check out Alamo's uk website for US car rental as they often have very good prices on cars and let you pick the car within the class. If you're feeling a little braver you could even look on Turo

    No, they don't drive like a BMW or a Cadillac but you won't get a BMW or a Cadillac for that money and frankly one of the convertibles is a lot more fun on a holiday than a Nissan Altima / Toyota Camry / Ford Fusion which is all your likely to get at a cheaper price.
     
  9. [TW]Fox

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 154,583

    This isn't true, I moved to renting Luxury class cars and it was always cheaper than a Mustang and Cadillac was the most common car I ended up with.
     
  10. vila

    Hitman

    Joined: Aug 10, 2004

    Posts: 717

    That isn't my experience at all in the past 5 years doing regular work and pleasure trips to the states- i certainly have had Cadillacs and BMW's but only when work was paying (or more recently using Turo)

    Perhaps its depends where you flying to - but a check on alamo, avis and enterprise from Lax for 2 weeks from April 2nd shows the Mustang as cheaper than Luxury cars -

    mustang at £575 (alamo)
    £606 (avis)
    and £650 (enterprise)

    Luxury Class (Cadillacs shown) start at £895, (alamo)
    Large (no luxury or Cadillacs shown with Avis) gets you a Lincoln MKZ for £746
    Luxury Class (cadillac shown) listed at £1004 (enterprise)

    Even premium class is more expensive with Alamo and Enterprise.

    For someone on holiday who's not driven a convertible pony car before i don't see what is cheaper and better.
     
  11. Ant84

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 20, 2007

    Posts: 1,068

    Looks like I'm the only one to find the car hire with Virgin more expensive than others. Not sure if they're recommended but Rhino Car Hire are over £50 cheaper for two weeks in April.

    £480 with Hertz booked through Rhino.

    Only paid £315pp with United for flights on the 787 Dreamliner too. Outgoing direct from LHR and the return has an hour stopover in Denver. Cheaper than I thought it would be.

    Hard to argue with just over £1k for two of us - flights and car for two weeks.
     
  12. The Craig

    Soldato

    Joined: May 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,491

    Location: Warwickshire

    Cheers, had a look on rhino but more expensive than virgin for me. Think I'll try book this weekend. I'll phone avis and if they're no good go for virgin at £680 for 16 nights. We both drive crap cars and not really bothered about "luxury" but a mustang appeals.

    Rest of money will be taken out via Halifax clarity so this slightly splits risk on exchange rates going down/up.

    I got my. Flights direct to LAX from Heathrow for £380 per person, seemed cheap at the time to me also! (not sure what plane it is)

    I initially had some at circa £400 from Manchester but they got cancelled
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2019
  13. Ant84

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 20, 2007

    Posts: 1,068

    Just in addition - what's the deal with Yosemite in April? I'm assuming Tioga Pass will be closed, but is there an alternative route we can take advantage of amazing scenery?

    Glacier Point will be closed but I'd like to revisit Tunnel View. Are snow chains required to drive through in early April?

    Ideally want to do Las Vegas > Badwater Basin > Sequoia National Park > Tunnel View > San Francisco

    Would that route miss out too much of Yosemite? I'm taking my missus for her birthday and she's always wanted to see it.

    Appreciate any advice from any of you seasoned road trippers. :)
     
  14. b0rn2sk8

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 9, 2003

    Posts: 4,281

    We had to do Las Vegas to Fresno via Death Valley in a day, it was rather a long leg. It was at least 8 hours driving plus stops in the park so we were still going well into the evening, still a great day though!

    If you are doing sequoia rather than heading to Yosemite it’s not as long but it’s still pretty long.
     
  15. Peerzy

    Soldato

    Joined: Nov 9, 2008

    Posts: 6,691

    I think if Tioga Pass is closed you are pretty much locked out of the park by roads. When I looked there didn't seem to be a way into it by car that got you close to any of the good stuff without adding days onto the trip.

    Even when it is closed it adds a big detour round the bottom.
     
  16. The Craig

    Soldato

    Joined: May 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,491

    Location: Warwickshire

    Ordered mustang for rent via avis. I'm guessing I dont need extra policies for bursting tyres etc? Seems theres a lot of upselling, but generally all is insured/covered?

    Are there any good wifi/sim deals for the US?

    Thanks @mohawk for the tip regarding phoning, got it for £650 for 16 nights when phoning up Avis.


    Current plan/timeline is below (all her plans/orders!). Anywhere particularly good for hotels etc? I'm also open to doing it Ad-hoc. The only Q I have on is wether to stay in LA as many days (going to universal one day)

    Day 1 Arrive LA
    Day 2 LA
    Day 3 LA- San Luis Opisbo
    Day 4 San Luis Opisbo-San Francisco
    Day 5 San Francisco
    Day 6 San Francisco
    Day 7 San Francisco
    Day 8 San Francisco-Monterey
    Day 9 Monterey
    Day 10 Monterey/Big Sur
    Day 11 Monterey/Big Sur- Santa Barbara
    Day 12 Santa Barbara- San Diego
    Day 13 San Diego
    Day 14 San Diego
    Day 15 San Diego
    Day 16 San Diego- LA
    Day 17 Leave LA
     
  17. [TW]Fox

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 154,583

    The whole route seems to duplicate quite a lot and you spend ages in San Fran. You've enough time to go quite a different way from LA to SF than via San Luis?
     
  18. Peerzy

    Soldato

    Joined: Nov 9, 2008

    Posts: 6,691

    Could do this;

    Day 1 Arrive LA
    Day 2 LA
    Day 3 LA
    Day 4 San Diego
    Day 5 San Diego
    Day 6 San Diego
    Day 7 Vegas
    Day 8 Vegas
    Day 9 Vegas
    Day 10 Mammoth Lakes
    Day 11 Yosemite
    Day 12 San Fran
    Day 13 San Fran
    Day 14 San Fran
    Day 15 Monterey
    Day 16 Santa Barbaba
    Day 17 Leave LA

    If you don't want to do Vegas you could even skip that completely, go from San Diego to Mammoth Lakes, extra nights in Yosemite, an extra stop on the PCH and then add a night in either San Fran, LA or San Diego;

    Day 1 Arrive LA
    Day 2 LA
    Day 3 LA
    Day 4 San Diego
    Day 5 San Diego
    Day 6 San Diego
    Day 7 Mammoth Lakes
    Day 8 Yosemite
    Day 9 Yosemite
    Day 10 San Fran
    Day 11 San Fran
    Day 12 San Fran
    Day 13 San Fran
    Day 14 Monterey
    Day 15 San Luis Obispo
    Day 16 Santa Barbaba
    Day 17 Leave LA

    FWIW I'd add the extra day in to San Diego as it's the best place on your route.
     
  19. Ant84

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 20, 2007

    Posts: 1,068

    Anyone used Avis before? Phoned them up today as per the advice on this thread and they quoted me £456 which is the cheapest I’ve had so far.

    They did say a Mustang wasn’t 100% guaranteed and that it may be a Camaro or similar. What other convertibles do they have at Avis? And can you select your own car from the parking lot or are you assigned whatever you’re given at the desk?

    I’m really hoping for a 5.0 V8 too. I read that most Mustang rentals in the US now are indeed the V8, or is that a load of rubbish?
     
  20. b0rn2sk8

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 9, 2003

    Posts: 4,281

    Most rental mustangs are V6 or 2.0L Ecoboosts. You only get a 5L V8 if you pay specifically for it and boy to you pay for it.

    They are normally Mustangs or Camaros IIRC