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Independance Day - US

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1. Posted by pazz5 (Budding Member 60 posts) 7y

Good day all!

Just a quick question regarding the 4th July in the US. Basically, a friend and I are heading to Toronto for a fortnight between 26th June and 11th July. We have decided to drive south on the 3rd July to either Detroit/Chicago, or a surprise visit to see my family in Binghampton for Independance day.

What generally happens city wide during Independance day? I can only imagine it is similar to a public holiday in the UK where most people have the day off work etc. Therefore are all the shops/bars/clubs operating on shorter hours or even open for the day at all?

Silly question I know but I would like to be in the USA for Independance day but dont want to be stuck for things to do!



2. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 875 posts) 7y

Pretty much most places will be open as usual. With possibly early closing for some The celebrations usually start at night with fireworks, and depending on state regulations these maybe in back yards or at parks, usually every town has one main fireworks display going. You might want to hedge some questions to your relatives to make sure they are going to be home. The 4th falls on a Saturday and a lot of people will probably be heading off somewhere for the weekend.

3. Posted by pazz5 (Budding Member 60 posts) 7y

Hey Dodger,

Thanks for the info. We still need to decide 100% on where to go but if my family are going away I think we'll opt for Chicago, even though it's a bit further afield. Hope to see some good fireworks displays wherever we end up!

Cheers again

4. Posted by Daawgon (Travel Guru 1997 posts) 7y

Give yourself plenty of time - traffic will be especially bad that weekend. Lately very few stores honor national holidays in the USA - in fact, some of the biggest retail sales happen on holidays. Remember that our borders are not as open as before (this is the first year that passports are required to cross the CA/USA border) - could be quite a line of cars backed up on the holiday.

[ Edit: Edited on 06-Jun-2009, at 23:48 by Daawgon ]

5. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

The place to avoid is Washington DC, unless you have somehere to park up the night before. The place is always heaving with tourists and onlookers. Otherwise, you'll be fine.

Post 6 was removed by a moderator
7. Posted by pazz5 (Budding Member 60 posts) 7y

Thanks guys, yeah I guessed the roads might be bad. We will be setting off early on the 3rd so should be ok.

Still yet to decide where to head but I'm sure we'll have a blast getting there.

Thanks again.

8. Posted by Ham Radio (Respected Member 284 posts) 7y

The Chicago Independence Day fireworks display is at the Navy Pier.
Always a great show.

9. Posted by pazz5 (Budding Member 60 posts) 7y

Looks like we are heading to Chicago now so Im sure we will be on Navy Pier that night, thanks Ham. Found out my family are away for the weeked which is a shame.

Also as an afterthought, would we need to register online/gain a visa if we were just planning on visiting for 2-3 days (3rd to 5th/6th)?

10. Posted by pazz5 (Budding Member 60 posts) 7y

Sorry scrap that last question. Looks like I don't.

From US embassy website

'ESTA applies only to those VWP travelers entering the United States by air or sea. Travelers entering by land either from Canada or Mexico are not required to register before traveling.'

Thanks again guys, looks like we're set to go.