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Old 07-24-2014, 07:15 PM
 
Location: Beacon Falls, CT
368 posts, read 308,244 times
Reputation: 641

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My younger sister (21) will be starting work at Disney World on Monday, August 4th. We're leaving from CT in separate cars on the 1st. Long story short, it's a six month gig and she wants to have her car, so while flying would be considerably cheaper, that's not an option. I would have driven her in her car and then grabbed a flight back, but she wants me to follow just as a precaution.

Now, make no mistake, I'm excited about the road trip overall. Once we get to Florida and my sister and I part, I'll have a bit of time to burn on the way back (I had vacation time coming anyway) and already have a few places in mind to see. However, it's the getting there that's stressing me out a bit. I'm sure quite a few people here have made the trip from the northeast to Florida and back so I come to you for any advice I can get.

This is our plan as it stands right now. We're leaving at about 1 or 2 A.M. on the 1st in order to get through New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and D.C. before morning traffic. We'll stop for a motel in South Carolina. Although I'd like to make Georgia, this being myself and my sister's first road trip, I have a feeling fatigue will set in before that. I figure if we get there in the afternoon (after about 14 hours of driving), we'll have more shut-eye time. Then we'd leave early on the 2nd and hopefully get to Orlando by lunch.

Here's where my questions come in.

1. Assuming we did leave that early in the morning, would it be fine to stay on 95 all the way through D.C.?

2. Any recommendations on motels you've stayed at in South Carolina? Ones to avoid?

3. Any advice in general for first-time road trippers? Do's and don'ts?

Thanks in advance.

Just to add - both cars have already been fully serviced in preparation for the trip. That's one thing my mind is at ease about.
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:45 PM
 
Location: home state of Myrtle Beach!
6,269 posts, read 18,908,287 times
Reputation: 3497
14 hours of straight driving is too long for one person. Does your sister understand you will be in her car with her, if you take one car and fly back? If you decide to take only 1 car, switch drivers every 4 hours or so to avoid fatigue setting in. It will, believe me!
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Old 07-24-2014, 11:18 PM
 
Location: NC
720 posts, read 1,485,881 times
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I agree with the above poster. 14 hours is way too long for one person, and driving alone IMHO, contributes to the monotony..As to the route,your timing sounds good to avoid the worst traffic. I95 is the most direct route to take. Stop every 2-3 hours for bathroom and stretching your legs.Our credit card number was stolen at a NJ gas station, we pay cash in NJ now.According to our bank, happens a lot there.
Bring drinks/snacks in the car, try to eat regularly and healthy, you'll feel better.Rest stops below DC are pretty nice and clean.Can't help with motels, we travel with our camper.
Please be careful and don't drive so long that you endanger yourselves.
On your way back, stop in Savannah! Good luck!
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Old 07-25-2014, 06:13 AM
 
2,601 posts, read 5,296,825 times
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> she wants me to follow just as a precaution.

?????

Can you get a neighbor to follow you in a third car? Would that be better?
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Old 07-25-2014, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Beacon Falls, CT
368 posts, read 308,244 times
Reputation: 641
Quote:
Originally Posted by myrc60 View Post
14 hours of straight driving is too long for one person. Does your sister understand you will be in her car with her, if you take one car and fly back? If you decide to take only 1 car, switch drivers every 4 hours or so to avoid fatigue setting in. It will, believe me!
I made that quite clear to her. I don't think she fully understands what lies ahead of us. She's very stubborn and I have already tried to convince her it would save time and money if we took one car, but she had none of it. We will probably plan on stopping and stretching our legs every couple hours or so.
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Old 07-25-2014, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Beacon Falls, CT
368 posts, read 308,244 times
Reputation: 641
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodlecamper View Post
I agree with the above poster. 14 hours is way too long for one person, and driving alone IMHO, contributes to the monotony..As to the route,your timing sounds good to avoid the worst traffic. I95 is the most direct route to take. Stop every 2-3 hours for bathroom and stretching your legs.Our credit card number was stolen at a NJ gas station, we pay cash in NJ now.According to our bank, happens a lot there.
Bring drinks/snacks in the car, try to eat regularly and healthy, you'll feel better.Rest stops below DC are pretty nice and clean.Can't help with motels, we travel with our camper.
Please be careful and don't drive so long that you endanger yourselves.
On your way back, stop in Savannah! Good luck!
Thanks for the tips! I've been trying to cut back on sweets anyway. I plan on bringing some apples and bananas for the trip and water too. I don't think we will need gas until after New Jersey going down, but I'll make sure to have cash handy in case I have to stop on the way back!

I do want to see Savannah at some point but I'm saving that trip for another time, possibly in winter when it gets cold here. I want to be able to get at least 2 days there and another 2 in Charleston. On the return trip, I do plan on driving through the outer banks and seeing the Wright Brothers Memorial.
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Old 07-25-2014, 11:08 AM
 
1,325 posts, read 2,844,272 times
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We drive from NEPA to South Carolina which for us is about 10.5 hours with 1 or 2 stops and it is a tiring trip. I agree with the above people who say 14 hours of driving is unrealistic and unsafe. The time you think you will save by covering more miles will be lost in your recoup time - not to mention summer traffic is very unpredictable. I am not sure what having you follow her would accomplish. It makes more sense to drive in one car. If the car is the issue, it would pay to make sure it is in good trip condition before you start out.

I would suggest setting a destination and then looking up hotels in that area, making sure to look up on travel adviser and other sites to read the reviews. You can't believe everything on them but it will give you a good idea of the area so you aren't driving around looking for any place to stay.
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Old 07-26-2014, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Florida
490 posts, read 896,233 times
Reputation: 655
I have driven from MA to Ft Myers to visit my sister several times so I know what's what. I'm a retired guy who has done lots of distance driving.

Here's my advice to you and your sister. Go in her car, take turns driving, and fly back. Get a Garmin GPS. On a long trip it will be worth it's weight in gold....

Oh, and your idea of leaving at say 1AM is a great idea. You want to get thru NYC and DC with as little traffic as possible.

PS Take ONE car
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Old 07-27-2014, 10:43 PM
 
Location: home state of Myrtle Beach!
6,269 posts, read 18,908,287 times
Reputation: 3497
Quote:
Originally Posted by UconnHuskies630 View Post
she wants me to follow just as a precaution.
Who's going to follow you back home "just as a precaution"? Or are you her male sibling? That might make more sense but I still think her idea is not well thought out. She's younger than you, take control of the situation!
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:40 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,359 posts, read 10,914,853 times
Reputation: 3843
Fredericksburg, Va just south of DC is a nice stop. So are Fayetteville, NC and Santee, SC.
Take your own music with you or better yet get satellite radio. You'll need it. Plug your phone into your car.
There are very nice state rest areas with maps and hotel coupons at most state borders or just inside the state. Most of them have picnic areas where you can walk around in pleasant surroundings.
Eat clean food, nothing greasy or spicy or unfamiliar.
Be prepared to talk to yourself a lot.
Have a safe trip!
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