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Old 09-22-2014, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Gorgeous Scotland
4,123 posts, read 4,750,060 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beachmouse View Post
The problem with the car rental idea is that most reputable car hire agencies charge a huge premium for under-25 drivers, even if we're talking cheapest possible subcompacts.
I didn't think there were any car companies who would rent to under 25's. Some hotels won't rent to under 25's either. I was checking into a condo rental company once and a couple was turned away as they were too young. They had booked but apparently it didn't ask their age. They were furious!
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Old 09-22-2014, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Ohio
1,395 posts, read 1,141,852 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
It's variable enough most of the time it wouldn't be that far from what he's used to. And much sunnier, too.
That's true as well. Just a lot more roll of the dice. Could very well be sunny and 50F (10C) as well.
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Old 09-22-2014, 10:32 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,990 posts, read 41,998,698 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ameriscot View Post
I didn't think there were any car companies who would rent to under 25's. Some hotels won't rent to under 25's either. I was checking into a condo rental company once and a couple was turned away as they were too young. They had booked but apparently it didn't ask their age. They were furious!
They will, but you need to have your own car insurance for most. Someone who doesn't already own a car (in the US) is out of luck. Under 21, however, I don't think is possible. Looks like it is but it will be expensive:

http://www.budget.com/budgetWeb/html...for%20renting?
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Old 09-22-2014, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Northern Ireland
3,402 posts, read 2,596,818 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ameriscot View Post
I didn't think there were any car companies who would rent to under 25's. Some hotels won't rent to under 25's either. I was checking into a condo rental company once and a couple was turned away as they were too young. They had booked but apparently it didn't ask their age. They were furious!
Yes this summer I had to prove I was 18 to buy a scratchcard.
They don't give 18 year olds the independence that we would get here.
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Old 09-22-2014, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Gorgeous Scotland
4,123 posts, read 4,750,060 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Summerwhale View Post
Yes this summer I had to prove I was 18 to buy a scratchcard.
They don't give 18 year olds the independence that we would get here.
You have to be 21 in the US to buy alcohol, etc. You are not an adult at 18.
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Old 09-22-2014, 11:27 AM
 
Location: Northern Ireland
3,402 posts, read 2,596,818 times
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I know.
America is more different than it appears.
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Old 09-22-2014, 12:59 PM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
3,910 posts, read 4,653,076 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beachmouse View Post
The problem with the car rental idea is that most reputable car hire agencies charge a huge premium for under-25 drivers, even if we're talking cheapest possible subcompacts.
My bad. Missed the part about the OP being under 25.
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Old 09-22-2014, 02:27 PM
 
Location: NoVa
2,126 posts, read 2,912,462 times
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The cheapest scenario I can think of is like this:
- Fly to NYC (EWR airport) and stay near that airport for your NYC trip. You can hop on the NJ Transit train daily for your NYC fix, it's not far, only 1 stop away from Penn Station in NYC, and you save significant money by staying on the other side of the river. Just make sure you don't wander around in Newark at night. Some parts of Newark are only suitable for someone with a death wish. Don't insist on 4* hotels. Book 3* airport hotels that cater to business customers, they will be cheaper, cleaner, and generally offer more free perks (free breakfast, free airport shuttle, free shuttle to the train station, free internet - all of which you need to pay extra if you stay in 4* hotels). Get yourself acquainted with Priceline.com - The Best Deals on Hotels, Flights and Rental Cars. for your hotel booking, the name your price / bidding type. You still need to shell out $70-$90 for airport hotels, but it's cheaper than paying $200-$300 in NYC.

Transport From NYC to DC (when in US, don't say you're going to Washington, you'll be asked "Which one?". Say DC = District of Columbia, which is what we call it around here). Take one of the-NYC-to-DC busses. Google "NYC to DC bus" and you'll find tons of choices. Avoid anything that leaves from Chinatown since the drivers are usually iffy at best. Bolts bus is good, megabus is good. The trip is roughly 4 hours one way, and you pay $25 AT MOST. Sometimes if you show up on the day of departure, you may even get on with only $5. It's a local secret that most foreigners don't know. I live roughly 25 miles from DC and never fly or take the train to NYC. The bus is clean, has AC, has WiFi, they give you water, and they're on-time.

While in DC: this is the tricky part, especially if you don't drive or can't get a rental car. This means your option is only to stay in proper DC. Be prepared to pay close to $200 even for 3* in DC. Again, get yourself acquainted with Priceline and check out BiddingForTravel.com - The informed Priceline Travel Bidding Forum while you do that to get an idea of how much you should bid. Not sure if they'll accept foreign credit cards though.

For the 3rd city, why not check out Boston, also in the East Coast? They're relatively cheaper to get to, you can buy a one-way ticket from DC to Boston (jetblue is cheap airline you can check out), then once you're done with Boston you can take the bus from Boston to NYC (same bus that serves DC-NYC line, they go to Boston too, same cheap price, and it's about the same distance from NYC to Boston as it is from NYC to DC, except one goes north, the other goes south). Plus Boston is walkable compared to anywhere in Florida.

If you just want to relax on a white sandy beach, then nothing compares to Florida's gulf coast (you do know Florida has the Atlantic cost and Gulf Coast, right?). My personal favorite beach is Siesta Key, about 50 miles from Tampa, literally sugar white sand that stays as cool as talcum powder even in peak summer weather. Word of advise, the tourist season in Florida varies depending on where you go. South Florida gets really expensive in Spring, Fall, and Winter, because that's the only place in the lower US that's warm enough for us to wear shorts during that time. In Northern Florida (my recommendation is Destin or Pensacola), their high tourist season is summer, because they get cold in winter (generally 50 degrees F in winter, and nobody wants to go to the beach in that temperature). Hotels will be roughly $100 - $150. If you stay long term, I would even rent a vacation rental / condo. It's cheaper, better amenities and you can make small meals at home for breakfast and lunch, then splurge for dinner.
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Old 09-22-2014, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Southern California
1,026 posts, read 1,116,640 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Summerwhale View Post
Ugh I just spent 5 weeks in Orlando i've seen enough of it. I like America and i'm not sure where to visit... I've already been twice and I keep seeing NYC so I think its about time I visit.
Five weeks in Orlando and you lived to tell the tale? I hope you at least got to see some other parts of Florida while you were there. I love the coastal areas.
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Old 09-22-2014, 05:12 PM
 
556 posts, read 762,074 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graceC View Post
While in DC: this is the tricky part, especially if you don't drive or can't get a rental car. This means your option is only to stay in proper DC. Be prepared to pay close to $200 even for 3* in DC. Again, get yourself acquainted with Priceline and check out BiddingForTravel.com - The informed Priceline Travel Bidding Forum while you do that to get an idea of how much you should bid. Not sure if they'll accept foreign credit cards though.
There are usually some pretty good deals on business hotels near Metro stops in Arlington/Alexandria. I've stayed in very nice hotels in the Crystal City area for weekend trips. I imagine there are similar deals near other mid-distance Metro stops outside of the District proper.

Summerwhale - I know you say you don't want to do hostels, but it really is a great way to experience cities when you're young, especially if you are traveling alone. I've stayed in the DC and Boston Hostelling International locations - both are clean, safe, and very comfortable. Most offer private rooms for a fraction of the cost of a traditional hotel since the amenities are still limited (no TV in room, no daily housekeeping service). Common areas at hostels are a great place to meet other travelers and make new friends. Most hostels have organized activities and tours available for free or very low cost.
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