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Old 09-16-2017, 11:02 AM
6,387 posts, read 5,430,396 times
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If your friend is using miles for one leg of your flight, why are you giving him $250? Is he also booking your remaining one-way flight?

As everyone said, if you only have a debit card, you need to find out how much the car rental and hotel will freeze on your account. The bank will take a few days to release these funds so you won't have access to that money when you get home.

Have you considered just taking a bus to Cape May from Philadelphia?
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Old 09-16-2017, 11:07 AM
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As for the camera, I think once you get on board you'll see how tight the space is, and how leaning away to get your shot won't be feasible. Since your friend is getting you an awards ticket you won't be able to garuntee a window seat anyway.
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Old 09-16-2017, 12:39 PM
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Cape May is beautiful. I've been there many times. Atlantic City airport is convenient, if run-down. Spirit flies there, and charges for carry ons. Some secret information: if you have time, stop by the Cape May County Zoo. It was free the last time I went, and has lots of interesting animals.
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Old 09-16-2017, 04:02 PM
Location: Pennsylvania & New Jersey
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Contact a travel agent and see what can be done to fly you directly into Atlantic City International. It's not in Atlantic City but on the mainland in an easily accessible suburban setting. It is SO much closer and convenient to the Coast Guard base — maybe 35 miles.

Worth an inquiry: Maybe the Coast Guard helps with transportation from Atlantic City International? Shuttle? Carpool?

Heads-up FYI: Ocean City would normally be a "don't miss" place to visit but the annual MS City to Shore Bikeathon is that weekend. Stay out of Ocean City!
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Old 09-16-2017, 04:38 PM
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Fly into Philly. It's much closer than Newark. Cape May is closer to 60 minutes from Philly than 90 minutes.

You can try flying into Atlantic City, but it's usually more expensive, and you probably won't be able to get a rental car.

Tons of car rental options at PHL. I am partial to the Enterprise location there. Just always had good luck and service with them. Try booking through the Enterprise website - it seems to be cheaper than sites like Expedia. Also check out RetailMeNot or similar sites for discount codes.

Southwest would be my choice too, but they are not always the cheapest. Again, I've found that going to the actual airline websites is now less expensive to Kayak and other such sites. They seem to have wised-up to those and are now less expensive. You can fly different airlines there and back. May be cheaper.
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Old 09-16-2017, 05:38 PM
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I agree with the other posters. Make your reservations for the hotel and rental car asap. Rental car companies will raise their rates sometimes, close to your rental date, like airlines. If you can get your friend's points for free, by all means do so and don't be picky about airport or seat choices.

As for the camera. Your DSL camera will give you much better pictures than any point and shoot under 40 dollars. You have a much better zoom on your camera. Just don't take a lot of pictures of the interior of the plane because that will raise suspicion. Taking pictures of the view from the window is fine. I wish all people who sat next to me on a plane was as considerate as you. If you want to be considerate, just take out the camera (in its case) from that bag before take off and put it next to the bag under the seat. I assure you, you will have room for it, even if you are in a middle seat.

And as someone else said, don't be afraid to ask questions or explain your newness at flying. It's when people do stuff without explaining, that people think you are being rude. Airline personnel hear plenty of stories all the time and they often help people who don't even speak English.
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Old 09-16-2017, 10:58 PM
Location: Miami-Jax
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Originally Posted by CarnivalGal View Post
Fly into Philly. It's much closer than Newark. Cape May is closer to 60 minutes from Philly than 90 minutes.

You can try flying into Atlantic City, but it's usually more expensive, and you probably won't be able to get a rental car.
You're giving good advice in general but not in this situation. For his necessary flight time, PHL is $814 to get him in when needed and $921 to get him in on a decent flight when needed. No bueno. Atlantic City has zero options for his flight dates/times.
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Old 09-17-2017, 06:33 PM
91 posts, read 68,531 times
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Hey, y'all. Sorry for not replying sooner. As I mentioned, I work nights, and I also have a long commute, and with the stress I've been dealing with lately, I'm seriously tired and can't seem to think clearly much of the time, due to having so many things to thin/worry about.

As for an update on my situation, I'll try to answer a few questions/respond to some of the things I've seen posted: As of today, I have my flight booked out there to the East Coast and back to Arizona. This is largely/almost entirely due to a generous friend who used his points to book both of my flights (which I am genuinely grateful for)! He could not cover both flights with his points, so I needed to pay the difference/remainder, which ended up being $250. I also should have a rental car situation taken care of, so that's great to have out of the way. And I have a hotel room booked for the Cape May area on Thursday night; however, as I think I may have mentioned, there was a possibility of me staying out there for 4 days, instead of 1 day, and that is what I am going to end up doing. So, I now need to try to find a hotel/motel to stay in near the area of Point Judith, Rhode Island, for 3 nights (Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 22nd-24th), as I will be driving with my son up to Rhode Island immediately after the boot camp graduation ends on Friday afternoon (right around noon, actually, I believe).

If anyone has any suggestions about what I might want to try to do to try to find a decent/affordable hotel/motel in or even near Point Judith, Rhode Island, please do let me know. Obviously, I don't know the Point Judith area, but I'm assuming there are several other cities with hotels near there, so if I can find a decent, affordable hotel to stay at that's at least relatively close to Point Judith (within 20-30 minutes driving), that should be fine. I'm hoping to be able to find a room for around $50-$60 per night, so I hope that's going to be realistically possible.

My son had originally planned on/wanted to come home for a few days after boot camp, but it would be really expensive, and inconvenient, so we are going to try to get him up to the Point Judith, Rhode Island, area on Friday night, so that we can spend the weekend looking for apartments and a vehicle. So, that's why I will be staying over on the East Coast for 4 days, and why I am going to be looking for a hotel room in/near Point Judith next Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.

Also, before I forget (and sorry for writing yet another lengthy post), I wanted to ask if anyone knows anything about airport parking? I looked online, but saw several different prices, so I don't know what is current and accurate. I will be flying out of Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona, and I was thinking about driving my car there and leaving it at the airport for 5 days (leaving it Thursday morning and picking it up on Monday evening), but I have no idea how much this might cost.

Is typical airport parking like $5 per day? $10? $20? More? If someone has a helpful answer to this, that would be something I would really like to try to find out. And if anyone has left a vehicle at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport recently and could let me know how much parking was, I would really appreciate a response!

As for taking pictures with my digital camera, I don't have much interest in taking pictures of the inside of the airplane. Especially, since it might be perceived as being suspicious by airline employees; and also because it might **** off other passengers, if they were to think I was tying to take pictures of them, which I would be embarrassed to even try to do. So, my purpose for wanting to take pictures is specifically because I would like to try to grab some cool photos of stuff while flying, as I really like aerial photographs. Specifically, I would like to try to photograph some skylines, freeway systems, mountains, bodies of water, views of major cities as I'm flying over them, things like those. Assuming that I will be able to see stuff like that while flying, obviously.

If I'm not mistaken, I will have a layover in Minneapolis/St. Paul one way and a layover in Detroit in the other (not sure which layover is for which flight, though), and both cities have really cool skylines, if I'm not mistaken. So, I would really like to try to get some good pictures of both of these skylines (dozens of photos, if possible). And the same goes for Philadelphia, as far as having a nice skyline, so I am hoping to be able to get some good photos of the buildings there, as well.

Also, is anyone familiar with what the drive might be like from Cape May, New Jersey, up to Point Judith, Rhode Island? It looks like the drive will be directly along the coast, but I'm curious if might get to drive by any major East Coast cities along that route? Again, this is because I would really like to try to take some cool photos while being over and traveling across some of the East Coast. I will also be driving back to Philadelphia from Point Judith, RI, which takes me on a different route than I will be taking up there form Cape May, and I think I might actually be driving somewhat close to New York City (but I don't recall for sure), so if it does, I would really like to be able to see, and photograph, some of the spectacular skyline in NYC.

As usual, sorry for writing so much. And, as always, if anyone would like to reply and try to help answer any of my questions, I would really appreciate it!
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Old 09-17-2017, 06:52 PM
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Time to take a look at a map.
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:52 PM
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Yeah, I hadn't thought of that. And being that that's the only thing I have to think about, no problem.

FYI, I was simply trying to ask questions and get some answers to thoughts as they were coming to me while I was typing, from people who may be familiar with or knowledgeable about what I want to ask about.
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