My friend and I are from the UK and are planning a trip accross the US, starting from New York and ending in LA. We plan to go for 28 days in total, and hope to spend 5 days at NY and 5 days in LA. In the remaining 18 days, do you think it would be possible to get accross in that time, leaving us enough time to enjoy the cities in between??
At the moment we are seriously considering using the Greyhound bus service, would you reccomend this service for our trip?
The Greyhound is probably the cheapest and best option. Renting a car in the States is a hassle plus they charge you out of the ass for milage. It wouldn't be such a problem except for the fact that the sheer size of the US is guaranteed to rack up milage. Honestly, it'd take months to "do" the all of the US but it's definitely possible to go cross-country in 28 days I would probably start in NY and drive down the east coast to Florida then through Texas and Arizona to LA. I would be more specific as to which cities to visit but it's late and I'm kinda tired
I have done the drive cross country from NY to Washington State in 5 days but that was pretty straight driving, jsut trying to get from Point a to Point b as fast as possible...
It depends what you want to see, also the time of year can be important in your planning as weather can be a factor.
The previous answer to your post stressed the warm weather and desert climates (Florida, Arizona, etc). I would personally, being a mountains and ocean lover more than deserts, choose to go north of that- Colorado, Idaho, Wyoming, Washington State, then down the coast of Washington, Oregon and California. The drive down the california coast is particularly beautiful. New England is also beautiful in the summer...
And I would spend less time in LA, but it depends what you like...
Greyhound is cheap, but doesnt go everywhere and often takes FOREVER to do it. If it was me, I would rent a car when I left NY, OR contact a "driveaway" company to see if you could drive a car one way from NY to California. Driveaway companies are services that drive people's cars from point a to point b. If you have a good driving record that might be a possibility...
Also, there are often rental options that have unlimited mileage if you check around a bit, particularly the smaller companies...
Dont hesitate to contact me if i can answer any questions...
I actually just did this trip last May. I took the Greyhound everywhere, always trying to buy my tickets at least two weeks ahead of time to get a better price. (18 days is enough time depending on how many stops you are going to take. I found out later that SOME flights between some American cities were relatively close to the cost of a Greyhound ticket, so depending on where you want to stop you might want to check that out (http://www.aa.com).
I started in New York and spent way too much money there because hostels, food, anything touristy, is expensive in New York. Keep that in mind. I then went to Memphis, Austin and Los Angeles as well as Las Vegas (it's so close to L.A.). It might have been nice to stop in Washington and maybe spent more time in Memphis or another southern city. I loved Memphis so much though. The Human Rights Museum there and the music, the history, everything about it was amazing. Plus we got a hotel room right off Beale St. for only 50 bucks a night. Memphis is not ultra-glamourous by any means, apart form Graceland and stuff, but it rocks anyways.
The Greyhound is always almost full in the states and you will meet some INTERESTING characters. I kinda like that. Bring one of those neck pillows (the U shaped ones). It will SAVE YOUR NECK, literally.
The scenery you catch on the bus (if you can put up with the crazies and the long bus rides) is awesome.
I hope this helps a bit. Feel free to contact me for more info.
Unless you are very young, very energetic, very patient, and very open minded I say NOOOOOO to the Greyhound.
I took the Greyhound a short hop from one state to another and it took FOREVER!!!! Also, you spend a LOT of time at seedy, smelly stations, often in the middle of the night. You will see the poorest, most desperate people in the U.S., and the bus stops are almost always in the ugliest most dangerous parts of the cities.
I enjoyed things about the Greyhound- the sense of adventure and maybe "slumming it," if that isn't too horribly arrogant thing to say. But it is HARD.
Renting a car is fun. Driving down the highways stopping at truck stops and cheap motels and pulling off the road to get Grandma's fudge or visit the largest paperclip or whatever at your whim is wonderful.
I've been across the country in 4 days, but as was already said, that was focusing on getting there rather than enjoying the trip.
Also... I live in Los Angeles and am full of advice when you get around to planning that part of the trip...
Hah, that last post is so true. The station are always in the worst parts of the city and full of creepy, sketchy people. It's definitely an experience but yeah, feeling the road as you move along is nice and stopping in weird little towns. But people can either handle it, or they can't.