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Old 08-19-2013, 05:33 PM
 
3 posts, read 5,748 times
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Thank you all so much. I visited Beckley for like a day and a half about 3 weeks ago... I knew it would be different than CA, but I was hoping it would be like Nashville, which is kind of a hip city, and the only city in that region I've been to. Well, nope, nothing like Nashville! And nothing like CA. But its alright; their mountains have good freeways with wide lanes.

I DO have AAA thankfully, and I am praying I can take my car to get an oil change and looked at in the next couple days. I like the suggestions about large rest stops and truck stops, I didn't realize they would have areas I could walk the dog and stuff. I am trying to figure out how many days/nights it will take me--If I could do it in 2-3 nights I can just sleep in the car and be a good soldier. More than that and I will NEED a real night of sleep, so good to know about the motel 6.

I am thinking I am definitely not going the southern route. It would be too miserable. But, and this might sound ridiculous, do I need to watch out for tornados on the northern route? If there is one, can I pull over in time to not die? (I am obviously NOT from the midwest)
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:04 PM
 
79,457 posts, read 33,670,997 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phonelady61 View Post
I was not referring to Beckley . I was referring to WV in general . please read post carefully .
In general you still have no clue what you are saying.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:08 PM
 
79,457 posts, read 33,670,997 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yoshimi! View Post
Thank you all so much. I visited Beckley for like a day and a half about 3 weeks ago... I knew it would be different than CA, but I was hoping it would be like Nashville, which is kind of a hip city, and the only city in that region I've been to. Well, nope, nothing like Nashville! And nothing like CA. But its alright; their mountains have good freeways with wide lanes.

I DO have AAA thankfully, and I am praying I can take my car to get an oil change and looked at in the next couple days. I like the suggestions about large rest stops and truck stops, I didn't realize they would have areas I could walk the dog and stuff. I am trying to figure out how many days/nights it will take me--If I could do it in 2-3 nights I can just sleep in the car and be a good soldier. More than that and I will NEED a real night of sleep, so good to know about the motel 6.

I am thinking I am definitely not going the southern route. It would be too miserable. But, and this might sound ridiculous, do I need to watch out for tornados on the northern route? If there is one, can I pull over in time to not die? (I am obviously NOT from the midwest)
The odds of running into a tornado is only slightly higher than hitting big foot while driving after dark.

All the same, do you have a cell phone with internet service or a laptop that will pick up wi-fi? If so, just check the weather before leaving off in the morning. Most rest stops offer it and so will places like McDonalds.
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Old 08-19-2013, 07:10 PM
 
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Whew...you need to seriously upgrade the intensity level, IMHO.

Are we talking really poor here?

What sort of job are we talking about? You are so laid back about it I am figuring this is not a professional position, but more likely a low level blue collar position? I mean no disrespect.

To do a good job, you need to get the car into the VW dealer and have it gone through from stem to stern. Figure $1,000 if it hasn't even had an oil change in 20,000 miles. Figure oil service, complete tune up, maybe tires, brakes (?), brake fluid change, cooling system change, and miscellaneous things like wipers, cabin filter, etc.

You need to be in Beckly at least a week before your job begins. Where are you going to live? IT takes time if you don't already have a place, at least to locate stores, get groceries, get telephone, electric, cable , water, gas, etc. You need to locate a vet with the pets. You need to set up a bank account, locate medical facilities, figure out how to get back and forth to work.

The trip.....seriously, go online and find hotels which will be pet friendly. Unless you are destitute, don't sleep in your car. YOU can probably run about 700 miles (ten hours) in a day if you don't dawdle. Weather is not an issue unless you run into freak snow, tornados, thunder storms, sand storms, or howling winds. This time of year you should be fine. Get maps. Paper maps. Look at them and know where you going. They are free at AAA. They will also plan a route/routes out for you. Use the GPS on your phone to ensure that you are where you think you are, and for planning rest stops/meals/breaks/gas and walking time for the pets.

Keep snacks, pet nibbles, leashes, cages, and water in your car. Pay attention to where you are, what lies ahead, where you are planning to stop, and when you are likely to arrive in a destination. Later afternoon, call ahead and make a hotel reservation so you don't get stuck in some freaky local festival where all the room for miles around are taken.

Plan well. Stay with your plan. Pay attention. It is a LONG, serious trip that people do all the time with no problems. The more you prepare, the easier the trip.

Good luck. W Va is beautiful.
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:04 PM
 
11,278 posts, read 8,446,041 times
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1. Go to Auto Zone or NAPA and pretend you're a dumb female. Say something like: "My check engine light just came on and I'm scared to drive it. Am I supposed to change the spark plugs or something? How much is that anyway?" It helps if you have a southern accent. (works for me!) Normally they'll climb under your dash with their little tester and tell you exactly (or nearly so) what the problem is. What if it's the PCV? Get one and slap that puppy on there! That's a $5 fix. At least you'll know.

2. I love those instant oil change places when you have good people working there. They will check all your fluids and when you let them know you're driving cross country they'll take a look at your tire wear and undercarriage, etc. Some places will do free brake inspections but chances are you're not going to need breaks, right? Have you kept up your car's maintenance?

3. Truck stops don't care if you sleep in your car and they have showers, too. Just park in a well-lit area out of the way of the big rigs (in a car parking lot)

4. Clean your car well (inside) before you begin your packing. This always makes me feel better. Try to keep your car organized along the trip. Put trash in a bag as you go and dispose of frequently. In the morning, roll up your "bedding" and stow neatly. Keep snacks small and minimal - nothing worse than overeating as you travel. So don't bring a whole package of chips ahoy's or oreos unless you don't mind eating it all in one sitting. Crunchy stuff is good. Not too much caffiene of you'll have to stop every 20 minutes when you're tired.

5. Audio books are the BEST. It should take you about 3 good novels to make it across.

6. Keep the kitty in the carrier where she can potty if she needs to. My cat is doing pretty well on a leash with a harness. Gallon jug of water and put food in serving size baggies. It's illegal in some states to drive with pets on your lap. FYI. Be sure your pets are up on shots.

Good luck, Godspeed and HAVE FUN!! (Don't pick up hitchikers)
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Old 08-19-2013, 08:46 PM
 
1,012 posts, read 1,061,582 times
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Default Done this trip 2x

We've moved from SoCal to NC with 2 big dogs. La Quinta hotels are also usually dog-friendly, and some are budget-friendly.
Being a single traveler, I'd find the money to stay in hotels, if at all possible. You could probably do the drive in a 5 day/4 night stretch...maybe $300 in hotels. Worth it for the safety. (Just check the rooms for bed bugs!! Even the nicest hotels can have them.)
Since you have AAA, go to a AAA-approved mechanic and have your oil changed. Explain to them that you are about to take a road trip (you don't have to tell them you're moving) and ask them to give your car a basic inspection.
Since you're driving alone, don't try to push yourself too hard. Google maps can give you a good idea of driving times. Generally, we don't push for more than 10 hours at a stretch.
Good luck and stay safe.
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Old 08-19-2013, 11:35 PM
 
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10 hrs is about max for safety reasons. I've driven longer and started hallucinating which scared the puddin' out of me.
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Old 08-20-2013, 01:18 AM
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna. (birthplace)
12,351 posts, read 7,519,549 times
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I'll bet you're going to have the experience of a lifetime, and you might want to keep a short journal of the trip, if only to make the memories last.

85,000 miles isn't that much on a car these days; I've gotten 120,000 out of three of my last four cars, and change the oil only every 5-6000 miles. When I was in my twenties, it was common to check out all the belts and hoses before a long trip, but wear on these is harder to detect these days -- quality is better. Can't recall the last time I lost a belt or hose on a long trip.

We second the 10-hour/500-mile maximum in the above post; the guys and gals who drive the big rigs aren't allowed much more under the law. AAA is a necessity; I'm a bit prejudiced since I manned a phone at one of their call centers (in Omaha, no less) some years ago.

I-80 across Nebraska and Wyoming has a number of medium-sized communities dependent largely upon the Interstate (North Platte lives off the Union Pacific (Railroad)). Northern Nevada and Western Utah are a bit less settled, but you're seldom out of sight of a cell-phone tower, or an 18-wheel truck.

East of Omaha, the population density picks up, and you can avoid Chicago by taking I-74 across Illinois between Rock Island/Davenport and Indianapolis. The rest should be a piece of cake.

Hope the journey is a pleasant one you'll long recall, and that you'll share a few impressions with us afterward.

Last edited by 2nd trick op; 08-20-2013 at 01:31 AM..
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:51 AM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
7,437 posts, read 12,962,283 times
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Just googled your route and, on this part of the country, it's the route I thought it would be. Once you kit Kansas City, you'll have I-64 all the way to Beckley. That will take you through St. Louis, Evansville, In., Louisville and Lexington, Ky. Somebody mentioned getting paper maps. Only map we usually get is to print off the route we google. But if you do want one, the best place is the welcome centers in each state. Good place to stretch yours and the pets' legs, give them some water to drink and get a little info. Many places you'll stop will have a big box of those coupon books for hotels along the interstate. Most of the time the hotels know nothing of those coupons and won't honor them but the books are good for telling you the pet friendly hotels/motels.
If you need it, get a hot spot on your cell phone so, if you need it or just want it to check emails, you can get online with your laptop if you have phone service. And most truck stops and a lot of welcome centers have wifi.
Once you get settled and get a free weekend, you'll only be about 300 miles (still on I-64) from Washington, D.C. and about 265 miles from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. You could spend a week in both places and not see everything. Have a fun, and safe, trip.
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Old 08-20-2013, 04:29 AM
 
1,474 posts, read 3,087,358 times
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The 3 most common issues with a vehicle on a long trip are: tires, coolant and giving out of gas. Don't mess around with the tires. Get new ones if they are close to needing changing out and get a good brand. Cannot really predict a hose failure and much depends on your budget for the trip. If I could afford it, I'd likely go ahead and change out the hoses and likely the belts too. But that is just me. I hate being at the mercy of some garage along my route if I can avoid it. Sometimes you can't.

Security is being aware of your surroundings and being careful of "helpful" strangers. I'd keep the pepper spray handy. I gather you are female. In that case, I could not recommend you stay overnight in a rest area unless the location has night security. Spend the money and stay in a decent, well lit, decent location motel. Dog can sleep in the car OR if the rooms have entrances on the outside, just take the dog in after dark as long as it isn't a barker. The worst that can happen is management, minimum wage, says you cannot have the dog in the room so please take it out.

Chances are you will make the trip with no issues but being prepared will make the trip more pleasant.
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