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Old 04-12-2018, 10:32 PM
 
6 posts, read 3,261 times
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My boyfriend and I are moving to Atlanta from the Bay Area next month. Our plan is to pack whatever we can in his car and turn it into a road trip. My question is, what is the safest route for a young interracial couple? He's Mexican, I'm African-American, and we're both aware that some places aren't welcoming towards people who look like us. With that in mind, we'd like some pointers on what towns to avoid stopping in for gas, sleep, food, etc. Also, which towns are best for those things + sight-seeing? Thanks! xx
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Old 04-12-2018, 11:54 PM
 
6,180 posts, read 5,511,116 times
Reputation: 4197
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbijordan27 View Post
My boyfriend and I are moving to Atlanta from the Bay Area next month. Our plan is to pack whatever we can in his car and turn it into a road trip. My question is, what is the safest route for a young interracial couple? He's Mexican, I'm African-American, and we're both aware that some places aren't welcoming towards people who look like us. With that in mind, we'd like some pointers on what towns to avoid stopping in for gas, sleep, food, etc. Also, which towns are best for those things + sight-seeing? Thanks! xx
At nearly 2,500 miles in distance, the route from the Bay Area to Atlanta is an extraordinarily long route to describe in any great detail. It is a very long route/distance that many people outside of professional drivers often choose to fly when and if possible.

(From San Francisco and the East Bay) Google Maps recommends I-580 Eastbound to I-5 Southbound to California State Route 223 Eastbound to California State Route 58 Eastbound to I-40 Eastbound (at/near Barstow, California) all the way across the North American continent through the states of Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas to I-55 Southbound (at West Memphis, Arkansas) to I-240 Eastbound (on the south side of Memphis) to US Highway 78 Eastbound (towards Birmingham) into Mississippi where it will become I-22 Eastbound after crossing the Mississippi state line.

Stay on I-22 Eastbound through Mississippi and into Alabama until it ends at I-65 on the north side of Birmingham where you will merge onto I-65 Southbound until you get to the I-20/I-59 junction.

When you get to the I-20/I-59 junction, exit and merge onto I-20 Eastbound/I-59 Northbound towards Atlanta and Gadsden. Take I-20 Eastbound/I-59 Northbound for about 5 miles until the roadway splits. Take the I-20 Eastbound lanes towards Atlanta and stay on I-20 Eastbound through eastern Alabama and into Georgia until you get to Atlanta.

Just generally stick to major truck stops and major exits/junctions with lots of services immediately on the route (and definitely not obscure small roadside establishments off of the beaten path) and you should be okay.

Despite the reputation of many areas across the Sunbelt (outside of urban California) and through the Southern U.S. and despite the hyped-up negativity in the current political climate during the Trump administration, you really most likely will not have any problems.

Though, you probably would be well-advised not to have any bumper stickers on your car that might attract unwanted negative attention in some parts of Red-state America and the Deep South (...bumper stickers that some might consider to be too liberal, anti-American, anti-Trump or anti-gun/anti-2nd Amendment, etc).

Also, if the cops pull you over, be very courteous (yes officer, no officer, etc) and very cooperative (with a very polite, very courteous and very cooperative tone) and don't be argumentative. Have all of your driver's licenses, state-issued personal identification, vehicle registration and automobile insurance valid and up to date.

Also obey all traffic laws (including posted speed limits, posted "No U-Turn" signs, etc), keep up with the speed of traffic and make sure that all of your headlights, turn signals, and tail lights (down to the light over your license plate) are in working order (and use those headlights, turn signals and headlights when mandated by law).

If people give you strange stares or make comments that make you uncomfortable, ignore them and leave the area fast.

Also, always keep your gas tank topped off. Watch your gas gage/gas tank level closely and don't let the level of gas in your tank drop below 2/3rds (roughly 70%) full (and 50% full at the absolute lowest) so that you won't find yourself in a situation either where you are searching for gas while you running close to empty, or where you have run out of gas in the middle of nowhere with the nearest services dozens-of-miles away in an extremely sparsely populated rural area.

Otherwise, I wish you the best on your travels eastward. Have a safe trip and welcome to Georgia.

Last edited by Born 2 Roll; 04-13-2018 at 01:06 AM..
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Old 04-13-2018, 12:17 AM
 
8,269 posts, read 10,202,202 times
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So to sum up the above post: have common sense.
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Old 04-13-2018, 06:43 AM
 
2,073 posts, read 1,810,897 times
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Born 2 Roll did an excellent job. I'd add be absolutely sure you don't have any marijuana or paraphernalia in the car. Leave everything in California. I drive from Colorado to Atlanta a few times a year and I've had the police check out my car at gas stations with a drug dog.
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:25 PM
 
1,883 posts, read 767,042 times
Reputation: 1552
I should note I recently drove to the Bay area, very beautiful place but very expensive..



Here is the route I took...
  • I-580 East to I-205 East
  • I-205 East to I-5 North, STAY IN RIGHT LANE
  • I-5 North to SR120 East (Freeway)
  • SR120 to CA-99 South (Freeway)
  • **The reason I recommend CA-99 is because there are ALOT more places to stop, get food, gas, restrooms ect than there are on I-5 and the difference in time between the routes is at best 10 minutes.)**
  • Take CA-99 South to Bakersfield CA where you will meet CA-58 (Mostly Freeway) just outside of Downtown. Take CA-58 East.
  • **Note that CA-58 meets CA-99 twice, so make sure you take exit #24 from CA-99 to CA-58 East*
  • Now you're going to begin your mountain climbing adventure....
  • Make sure you have ATLEAST a half a tank of gas, there arent many fuel stops on CA-58.
  • CA-58 will end at I-15 just south of Barstow CA, take the exit for I-15 North and STAY IN THE RIGHT LANE.
  • Not even 2 miles later, I-40 East will exit from I-15 North, merge onto I-40 East...
  • I HIGHLY RECOMMEND FILLING UP IN BARSTOW, AND FROM THIS POINT FORWARD KEEP AN EYE ON YOUR GAS, ITS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED YOU GET FUEL EVEN IF YOU DON'T NEED IT AS FROM HERE UNTIL ARKANSAS YOU WILL BE TRAVELING THROUGH VERY LONG DESOLATE AREAS OF WHICH YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO GET GAS. -- There's an exit between I-15 and I-40 that should have a gas station.
  • Eastern California is flat, boring and deserted, however; once you cross into Arizona you MAY be faced with a Checkpoint, actually I'm about 90% sure that there IS a checkpoint on I-40 at the Arizona stateline. They will request identification and may ask where you are going but generally if you seem legit they won't bother you.
  • I-40 through western and central Arizona is going to be Mountaneous. Through eastern AZ it gets flat and very boring.
  • New Mexico gets slightly hilly but mostly flat and empty until you pass Albuquerque, then you have mountains, and more flatness, but you have a very slim chance of running into dust storms.
  • Eastern Arizona and All of New Mexico, have safety corridors, they will be indicated by signs of which demand that you turn your headlights on, even if its day time and the sun is broad out. If you go by a cop without your headlights on inside a safety corridor, you can be ticketed.
  • I-40 through Texas is shortlived and sweet. Has a high speed limit...but...shortlived experience.
  • Arkansas is where the higher speed limits of the western states end and you begin to enter hill country...
  • Finally..You reach West Memphis, Merge off I-40 to I-55 South, Cross the Mississippi River and IMMEDIATELY after the bridge ends you will enter an interchange, exit RIGHT to STAY on I-55 South.
  • Follow I-55 South until I-240 begins, you wont need to exit, I-55 will exit but I-240 continues straight, stay on I-240.
  • Take exit 21 on I-240 to merge onto U.S. 78 East, follow U.S. 78 East into Mississippi. U.S. 78 becomes co-signed with I-22 East.
  • I-22 / U.S. 78 is mostly complete and is a freeway all the way from Memphis TN to Birmingham AL.
  • Somewhere just outside of Birmingham, U.S. 78 is going to exit I-22, DO NOT FOLLOW IT, continue on I-22 East.
  • I-22 East ends at I-65 (for now)... Follow I-65 South until you reach Downtown Birmingham AL STAY LEFT AND FOLLOW SIGNS FOR I-20 EAST / I-59 NORTH...
  • I-20 East and I-59 North will divert someplace outside of Downtown Birmingham, Follow I-20 East.
  • Continue onto I-20 East to Atlanta.

Last edited by Need4Camaro; 04-13-2018 at 10:38 PM..
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:57 PM
 
Location: Georgia
2,543 posts, read 6,229,979 times
Reputation: 718
I'm sure these are excellent pointers.....

but.... After reading this....

I felt like I walked into AAA in year 2000 and asked for trip tik.
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Old 04-14-2018, 07:12 AM
 
Location: Brookhaven
369 posts, read 432,320 times
Reputation: 387
I would just fly...
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:17 AM
 
15,320 posts, read 27,461,888 times
Reputation: 18787
Ship your personal stuff, sell your car and items. Buy what you need here and buy one way tickets to get here. (The ridiculous Ad Valorem Tax for cars makes it worthwhile to just get a car here)

Southwest is a great option.

Welcome to Atlanta!
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Formerly Pleasanton Ca, now in Marietta Ga
5,278 posts, read 4,023,521 times
Reputation: 7034
I've done the trip 4 times in the last few years. I am a minority also.
The first time was when I moved from the Bay Area to Atlanta I drove a big pu truck towing a probably overloaded 20 ft trailer. I took the route that Born 2 Roll listed.
I also flew back late that year to drive my Lexus back to Atlanta.
The next year I drove my truck round trip to pick up a piece of equipment that couldn't be shipped.
Pretty much no issues at all except in Ok I got pulled over by Drug enforcement in the Lexus because I had Ca plates. Apparently there's a lot of drug running from Ca. They searched the car and it made me a bit nervous because I was by myself and 2 of them-my word against theirs if they plant anything, but they were courteous as was I and after about 30 minutes I was on my way. Point is don't carry drugs on you.
I even stopped in small towns with no issues.
Don't do stupid things and don't break the law and you will have no issues.
There is plenty of Gas along the way so I'm not sure why Need 4 Camaro said what he did. I was very aware of gas as the truck could go as low as 5mpg over the mountains. Maybe get the gas buddy app if you are worried.
Have a good trip!
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Formerly Pleasanton Ca, now in Marietta Ga
5,278 posts, read 4,023,521 times
Reputation: 7034
Quote:
Originally Posted by Need4Camaro View Post
I should note I recently drove to the Bay area, very beautiful place but very expensive..



Here is the route I took...
  • I-580 East to I-205 East
  • I-205 East to I-5 North, STAY IN RIGHT LANE
  • I-5 North to SR120 East (Freeway)
  • SR120 to CA-99 South (Freeway)
  • **The reason I recommend CA-99 is because there are ALOT more places to stop, get food, gas, restrooms ect than there are on I-5 and the difference in time between the routes is at best 10 minutes.)**
  • Take CA-99 South to Bakersfield CA where you will meet CA-58 (Mostly Freeway) just outside of Downtown. Take CA-58 East.
  • **Note that CA-58 meets CA-99 twice, so make sure you take exit #24 from CA-99 to CA-58 East*
  • Now you're going to begin your mountain climbing adventure....
  • Make sure you have ATLEAST a half a tank of gas, there arent many fuel stops on CA-58.
  • CA-58 will end at I-15 just south of Barstow CA, take the exit for I-15 North and STAY IN THE RIGHT LANE.
  • Not even 2 miles later, I-40 East will exit from I-15 North, merge onto I-40 East...
  • I HIGHLY RECOMMEND FILLING UP IN BARSTOW, AND FROM THIS POINT FORWARD KEEP AN EYE ON YOUR GAS, ITS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED YOU GET FUEL EVEN IF YOU DON'T NEED IT AS FROM HERE UNTIL ARKANSAS YOU WILL BE TRAVELING THROUGH VERY LONG DESOLATE AREAS OF WHICH YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO GET GAS. -- There's an exit between I-15 and I-40 that should have a gas station.
  • Eastern California is flat, boring and deserted, however; once you cross into Arizona you MAY be faced with a Checkpoint, actually I'm about 90% sure that there IS a checkpoint on I-40 at the Arizona stateline. They will request identification and may ask where you are going but generally if you seem legit they won't bother you.
  • I-40 through western and central Arizona is going to be Mountaneous. Through eastern AZ it gets flat and very boring.
  • New Mexico gets slightly hilly but mostly flat and empty until you pass Albuquerque, then you have mountains, and more flatness, but you have a very slim chance of running into dust storms.
  • Eastern Arizona and All of New Mexico, have safety corridors, they will be indicated by signs of which demand that you turn your headlights on, even if its day time and the sun is broad out. If you go by a cop without your headlights on inside a safety corridor, you can be ticketed.
  • I-40 through Texas is shortlived and sweet. Has a high speed limit...but...shortlived experience.
  • Arkansas is where the higher speed limits of the western states end and you begin to enter hill country...
  • Finally..You reach West Memphis, Merge off I-40 to I-55 South, Cross the Mississippi River and IMMEDIATELY after the bridge ends you will enter an interchange, exit RIGHT to STAY on I-55 South.
  • Follow I-55 South until I-240 begins, you wont need to exit, I-55 will exit but I-240 continues straight, stay on I-240.
  • Take exit 21 on I-240 to merge onto U.S. 78 East, follow U.S. 78 East into Mississippi. U.S. 78 becomes co-signed with I-22 East.
  • I-22 / U.S. 78 is mostly complete and is a freeway all the way from Memphis TN to Birmingham AL.
  • Somewhere just outside of Birmingham, U.S. 78 is going to exit I-22, DO NOT FOLLOW IT, continue on I-22 East.
  • I-22 East ends at I-65 (for now)... Follow I-65 South until you reach Downtown Birmingham AL STAY LEFT AND FOLLOW SIGNS FOR I-20 EAST / I-59 NORTH...
  • I-20 East and I-59 North will divert someplace outside of Downtown Birmingham, Follow I-20 East.
  • Continue onto I-20 East to Atlanta.
Nice picture! Makes me miss my old home!
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