trip planning

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1. Posted by jamey p (Budding Member 3 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

I have never really been anywhere north of N.C. I am from Walterboro S.C. about 60 miles from Charleston.
I am going to "Bernardsville" New Jersey. What do I need to be on the lookout for? I have heard things about toll booths,turnpikes etc.
When I travel it's mostly to Florida, so I am familiar to that area. But it sounds like it can really get congested up where I am heading. It looks like lots of six lane highways.

thanks for any comments:)

2. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1212 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

I am familiar with Walterboro - my son lives in Summerville. Walterboro is quite close to I-95. Although I-95 only has 4 lanes near you the 6 lane roads aren't that different from the four lane ones.

Are you driving up?

Some of the interstates do have tolls. If your car doesn't have an EZ Pass you will have to pay the tolls in cash and you will need to do it quickly.

The shortest way to go is straight up I-95 but this road has a lot of traffic and congestion as it goes through Richmond, Washington DC, Baltimore and Philadelphia.

If you wanted less congestion, I would go along the mountains rather than the coast - I-95 N to I-26 W, to I-77 N, to I-81 N and I-78 E. This will take about a hour and a half longer. This goes through Charlotte, Roanoke, Harrisonburg, Harrisburg, PA, Hershey and Allentown.

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Aug-2019, 02:33 GMT by greatgrandmaR ]

3. Posted by littlesam1 (Budding Member 62 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

I completely agree with taking I-81N and I-78E if you are concerned about traffic. I-95 is a direct route but driving around Washington DC is always difficult due to the volume of traffic. Also if available I would get an EZ Pass. The tolls are less expensive. You will save time not driving through the cash lanes at the toll both.

Larry

4. Posted by road to roam (Travel Guru 334 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

Quoting greatgrandmaR

If your car doesn't have an EZ Pass you will have to pay the tolls in cash and you will need to do it quickly.

Technically not true. Increasingly, in the northern half of the eastern seaboard of the US paying tolls with cash is becoming no longer an option. When paying cash is not an option, if you don't have an ez pass a snap is taken of your vehicle plate as you drive through the toll plaza and then a bill from that state transport or turnpike authority is sent to the address in the state where the vehicle passing through is registered. Or you can pay the toll online at some point after travel.

You don't need to be registered in the state issuing the toll - regular motorists from anywhere in the US and even Canada without an ez pass will be sent a bill.

These cashless tolls (also called electronic tolls) are found on some turnpikes, toll roads, tunnels and bridges. Toll plazas that used to have attendants are simply now empty where a cashless toll is in place.

Many drivers may be accustomed to throwing coins into the basket or paying an attendant in the toll booth, but that is becoming less and less the way on at least the northern part the eastern seaboard. Not anticipating these cashless tolls and then having to deal with them can be very frustrating at first.

New Jersey does have cashless tolls, however not all tolls are cashless - be aware.

Here is a link for the the NY State Thruway explaining this....

https://www.thruway.ny.gov/travelers/tolls/cashless-tolls.html

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Aug-2019, 15:32 GMT by road to roam ]

5. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1212 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

When I drive up I-95 to NYC, I don't find cashless tolls. Most of the places that I find where cash is not accepted at all are in Florida or Texas

There are places in southern NJ where the tolls are 25 cents but there's no toll taking person so you have to have the correct change.

There are tolls on I-95, but as far as I can tell the route I suggested - I-95 N to I-26 W, to I-77 N, to I-81 N and I-78 E doesn't have tolls.

6. Posted by road to roam (Travel Guru 334 posts) 5w 1 Star this if you like it!

Quoting greatgrandmaR

There are tolls on I-95, but as far as I can tell the route I suggested - I-95 N to I-26 W, to I-77 N, to I-81 N and I-78 E doesn't have tolls.

We don't know yet which route the OP will take - your suggested route or another one. In the case of the latter I just want them to be aware of this practice, as they seem to be questioning tolls and turnpikes, which exist along other routes.

It's just something for them to be aware of because cashless tolls can really catch one off guard. Just a simple heads up to them if they travel elsewhere in the area, too.

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Aug-2019, 16:40 GMT by road to roam ]

7. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1212 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

Quoting road to roam

Quoting greatgrandmaR

There are tolls on I-95, but as far as I can tell the route I suggested - I-95 N to I-26 W, to I-77 N, to I-81 N and I-78 E doesn't have tolls.

We don't know yet which route the OP will take - your suggested route or another one. In the case of the latter I just want them to be aware of this practice, as they seem to be questioning tolls and turnpikes, which exist along other routes.

It's just something for them to be aware of because cashless tolls can really catch one off guard. Just a simple heads up to them if they travel elsewhere in the area, too.

Yes I-95 does have some places with cashless tolls, but in the area between SC and NJ, most of the time there are lanes which take cash. The real problem with just taking I-95 is that is is madly congested with horrible traffic even outside the cities and it is easy to get confused, what with left exits and bad drivers. Washington DC traffic for instance is awful - I avoid it whenever I can, and I feel the same about Philadelphia and NYC.

Post 8 was removed by a moderator
9. Posted by jamey p (Budding Member 3 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

If I were in Charlotte N.C. what highway leads to the alternate route?
Thanks to for the replies so far,

10. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1212 posts) 5w Star this if you like it!

From Charlotte, NC you take I-77 north to exit 32 the intersection with I-81N towards Roanoke. Then you stay on I-81 through Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland and into Pennsylvania. In Pennsylvania you transition and follow I-78E toward Allentown into New Jersey Just before you get to Bernardsville you take I-287N and that takes you to Bernardsville