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Old 10-12-2014, 05:04 PM
 
17 posts, read 19,301 times
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Greetings all, I didn't put this in a particular city thread because I think it's more generic and, this way, I can get more input. Here's the question:

So I may be relocating from the midwest to someplace west like Nevada or California. It looks like the total driving time would be 30-40 hours so that means several stops along the way. So I would normally just assume that I would pick a hotel every 8 hours along the route and drive, essentially, from hotel to hotel.

But, I recently went on a trip about 5 hours away from my house (for a business training) and I found myself saying "You know what, I don't want to just drive by all this stuff (various attractions and curiousities and such)" and I found myself pulling off the highway to check stuff out.

So, naturally, that got me thinking about my potential longer trip because I know there'll be a lot of things I might like ot see. Now I know that might push me back several hours for my first hotel, which is no big deal, but that would have an "accordian" effect on all my other hotels. Eventually I assume I might end up adding an entire day to my relocation and that would bork up my reservations.

So I was wondering if it's possible to just drive across a big chunk of the country with no hotel/motel reservations? And is this done a lot on journeys liek this? If so, what's the best plan? Just do what I want and when I get tired look for a hotel/motel with availablity for that night?

I'd be driving a Ford Escape with a 5x8 uHaul trailer probably.
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Old 10-12-2014, 05:24 PM
 
Location: City of Angels
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Highway motels don't usually sell out. I've driven across the country a bunch of times and never made reservations, I'll just drive until I am tired.
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Old 10-12-2014, 05:30 PM
 
Location: City of Angels
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I should point out, there was one time when I was driving through colorado in the winter when I ended up shelling out like $200 for one night at a hotel because the storm was getting too bad to drive in and it was peak season. But even then a reservation somewhere else wouldn't have helped much. When you think you're going to stop in a few hours just check out priceline express deals a few hours up the road. Can usually get a decent 2.5 -3* for the same price as a motel 6.
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Old 10-12-2014, 09:29 PM
 
14,253 posts, read 23,969,886 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foadi View Post
I should point out, there was one time when I was driving through colorado in the winter when I ended up shelling out like $200 for one night at a hotel because the storm was getting too bad to drive in and it was peak season. But even then a reservation somewhere else wouldn't have helped much. When you think you're going to stop in a few hours just check out priceline express deals a few hours up the road. Can usually get a decent 2.5 -3* for the same price as a motel 6.

I am on the SIXTH night of a Chicago to Tucson journey through Colorado. All hotels were booked within a few hours of arrival using either the Priceline or Super 8 websites. I rely on my WiFi tablet and book the hotel at either a Starbucks, Panera, or McDonald's as they all have very reliable WiFi.

People who go from one hotel looking for a place to stay usually get the highest rates.

As for "there is always a highway hotel available", not really. This time of year, there are lots of sold out places due to college football, balloon festivals and the like.
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Old 10-12-2014, 09:50 PM
 
Location: Airports all over the world
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Only once have I ever regretted not booking a hotel in advance. I started my road trip in Las Vegas. Since I was only planning on going as far as St George, UT the first day I did not depart Vegas until after noon. Also made several stops to play along the way. Pulled in to St George about 7 pm. Everywhere I looked I saw nothing but "No Vacancy" signs. Finally spotted a run down Travel Lodge that did not have their no vacancy sign lit. The sign in front of the place was advertising rooms for $9.99, which was probably more than the place was worth. When I went to check in the desk clerk rudely told me since all of the other hotels were sold out, their $9.99 room was now $125.00. I told them what they could do with their room and headed on down the highway. Town after town all of the hotels were sold out. Turns out there was going to be a large marathon in St George and all of the runners were there. Ended up driving 200 miles before I found a hotel.
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:31 AM
 
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I think the OP should book his/her next hotel from the hotel s/he is staying at each time. So at least s/he has reservations for his/her next immediate destination.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:40 AM
 
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I book hotels with "Cancel By 6:00 PM" policies in advance and adjust as I go if needed. By 5:00 PM I know approximately where I'll be and can get a room there. If not, then I keep the original room.
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:03 AM
 
1,302 posts, read 1,298,387 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foadi View Post
Highway motels don't usually sell out. I've driven across the country a bunch of times and never made reservations, I'll just drive until I am tired.

Same here,
Never made reservations for a road trip. Do make reservations for your final destination.
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Old 10-13-2014, 08:33 AM
 
Location: Dallas TX
15,023 posts, read 21,719,486 times
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We did that moving across country. It was nice as it allotted you the freedom to drive how far you wanted to. We never had an issue finding a hotel.
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Old 10-13-2014, 08:35 AM
 
17 posts, read 19,301 times
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This is great, thanks for all the replies and info!
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