Q&A: Best US Road Trip?

Question by Oliver: Best US Road Trip?
Hey, me and a friend (we are both Australian males) will have finished school by the end of this year and we’re planning 2 have a gap year next year (a year off) so we want 2 go the US for a bit of it. We were planning on having a bit of a road trip (which would be a month long at the absolute maximum, preferably a bit less) but we are not sure where to begin and where to end. Could you please explain where we should begin and end our trip (and stops to make in between).

p.s. We aern’t sure what time of the year the we’re going so it would help if you explained that as well. Also, how much would it be expected to cost?

Best answer:

Answer by Edg1
L.A. up 99 through the gold country west on I-80 to I-5 to northern Ca. Right to Mt Lassen then through to Susanville, down 395 to Reno-down to Hwy 50-rt up the hill to Lake Tahoe and back down to Carson City and go left back up to Reno-then go right on I-80 to I-15 up to Montana. After you stay there a couple of days continue back down I-15 and cross over to Yellowstone Natl park-after 2 days there go down to Arizpnd to see the Grand Canyon and petrified forest. After that go east on I-10 to Texas and see the Alamo at San Antonio.Continue east to Murfreesborough Arkansas to Crater of diamonds park to dig for REAL diamonds.Then you could go to Florida to Miami Beach.After that head north to Washington D.C. to see the Smithsonian Museum and the capitol.Then up to New york city. If you are still alive go to see Niagra falls. Long before this you will be exhausted and broke and be hitch hiking back home-have fun!

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2 thoughts on “Q&A: Best US Road Trip?”

  1. Note that rental car agencies in the USA normally require the primary driver to be at least age 25. You may have to search for agencies if you are between 21 and 25 (probably can’t rent a car if under age 21).

    Also note that age 21 is required in all of the USA to purchase alcoholic beverages, including beer and wine. If that is important to you (and you are not yet 21) then wait until you are 21 to visit the USA.

    Like Australia, the USA is geographically huge. You may want to tour the US using a combination of travel modes to avoid spending lots of days just driving (assuming you can rent a car).

    The international airline you will use to fly to the USA almost certainly belongs to one of the three airline alliances, and all three of them offer “America passes” that provide reasonably priced air travel in the USA. The three alliances are:


    Discount airlines like http://www.southwest.com and http://www.jetblue.com don’t penalize you for buying a one-way ticket.

    AmTrak (www.amtrak.com) offers passes for train travel in the USA, and Greyhound does the same for bus travel (www.greyhound.com). It is practical & economical to take the train along the east coast and between some other places (ex. between New Orleans & Chicago). Bus travel is not very practical for long distances but can get you from a big city to somewhere nearby.

    A possible overview itinerary would be to fly from Australia to New York, make your way down the east coast to Washington DC, then to Florida, west to New Orleans, north to Chicago, west to the Rocky Mountains (ex. Denver), then to California, and fly home from LA or San Francisco. You could also do the trip in reverse.

    Don’t just visit big cities. At least visit an attraction like Yellowstone Park, the Grand Canyon, or Mount Rushmore that is well away from a big city.

    When to go depends on what you want. The southern USA has hot weather from May to September (as does some of the North), and the northern USA is very cold during winter.

    When you do travel to the USA make sure you have proof of medical insurance with you. If your home insurance does not cover you in the USA then buy “trip insurance”, which is cheap and sold by travel agencies.

    Consider joining SERVAS, which is a global network of travelers & hosts who have passed a background check: http://www.servas.org

    Some of your costs are fixed and you can calculate them in advance (airfare, rental car + fuel, train tickets, etc.). You need to plan on having at least US$ 50 per day EACH for meals + incidental expenses. The big question is how much you will spend on accommodations. You can save by joining SERVAS, staying in hostels when available (ex. http://www.indiahousehostel.com), and using budget hotels/motels. However, accommodations in large cities and around attractions tend to be expensive. Just do all the research you can via the Internet so you know what to expect.

    Travel guides for backpackers have many suggestions for saving money, even if you don’t plan to backpack.

    Good luck!

  2. Try http://cheap-fun-family-travel.com
    they have many different types of roads trips that involve 1,2,or 3 types of transportation sometimes in just 1 vacation (car, planes, train,bus). Great saving if you use the KOA camping cabins
    Start in California in the late summer and end at the East coast in early fall. that way you can see the seasons change and it will be less crowded

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