Thinking of travelling to the USA next year for about 4 weeks. Ideally i would love to drive from LA through Texas and on to Memphis. Would this take too long to do and still leave time and how much would it cost to hire a car. Is amtrak a better option. Can i get on and off amtrak or do i have to travel right through. Or should i fly to Memphis. Thanks
Personally, I wouldn't want to travel from LA to Memphis in 4 weeks.I would think that you would need to have a well structured itinerary before leaving, which to me takes out a lot of the spontaneity of your trip. However, it is very possible to do in 4 weeks, especially if you are a planner. If you have more than one driver I would suggest renting a car. It will probablly be around $800 USD for renting one. Some places chrage a flat fee, and some charge you a smaller fee plus a charge per mile the car is driven. That is something you will have to research once you get here, as prices fluctuate in that business. www.budget.com as well as www.enterprise.com are the common car rentals I know of. Hope I was of some help for ya, good luck...
You could take Amtrak's Texas Eagle from Los Angeles to New Orleans then catch the "City of New Orleans" train to Memphis.
Amtrak offers a number of rail passes so you could get off and on along the way. Getting around some of the cities could be problematical without a car depending on what you want to see.
Check out http://www.amtrak.com for more info on all this.
But let me add that if it's a toss up between the train and driving I'd drive. That route has some pretty spectacular stuff such as the Grand Canyon, the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest, Carlsbad Caverns etc. and with four weeks you'll have time to see a lot of it.
[ Edit: Edited at Nov 7, 2006 10:38 PM by MikeW ]
Driving cross country is an awsome expierence. Yeah renting a car for four weeks though would be really expenive, add gas, hostel or campsite fees, food, and all that, probably come out over 3000 bucks.
I have done three good size drives cross country, one from texas to the grand canyon and back, one from virginia to louisiana, and another from texas to maryland. all three i did in less than 4 days so it ment a lot of drivin. drivin through texas is not fun either, take it from me, its my homestate. its a looonnng drive through the state if you go from end to end and there aint really much to see. san antonio is a great place though, got the river walk, alamo, and mexican markets. probably the most colorful city in the state.
Amtrak would cost way more actually and it would be boring so i would not suggest that route. Greyhound might be a cheaper way to go if you wanted to do it by vehicle. they offer a 30 day pass and the busses go everywhere. www.greyhound.com, click on USA.
hope any of this helps.