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USA Travel thread #19

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#1 GeraniumQueen

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:13 PM

New thread time!
late again! Apologies, am in Europe atm, too much to see and do to mod wink.gif , please feel free to start a new thread when one gets too long and ask for it to be closed by another mod (best to pop in Messages to mods forum)

link to last thread

Edited by GeraniumQueen, 12 April 2012 - 08:23 PM.
changed to #19 LOL

#2 Jo_P

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:15 PM

Thanks GQ, Where abouts in Europe are you visiting??
Oh and this is thread #19 tongue.gif

jumpingbeans, welcome to the thread.
We normally book most things in the USA ourselves these days as travel agents wholesalers charge high fees to make changes or cancellations etc, whereas most hotels in the US have great cancellation policies where you don't et charged anything if you cancel up until 24-48hrs before your check in date.
In saying that, we have booked our cruise through our travel agent as they offered an onboard credit which Disney wasn't offering.
You can take you Aus-USA airfare prices to Flight Centre and they will beat them by a few dollars, but they won't match prices for domestic flights within the US only ones that originate in Aus.
Your dollar estimate for 12 days is pretty spot on, if you can get good airfare prices like there have been this March.

Updated list below original.gif

Edited by Jo_P, 12 April 2012 - 08:18 PM.

#3 Jo_P

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:19 PM


Becca81 - 28th March - 30th May 2012, LA, Miami, Quito, Miami, Orlando, New York, LA

kee/sicily - 3rd April 2012, Las Vegas, Miami, Cruise Bahamas, New York, Hawaii

Coffeegirl - 14th-28th April 2012, LA, NYC, Orlando, LA

Isadora - 21st April 2012 - 14th May 2012, Anaheim, New York, San Diego, Las Vegas

Whipmix - 7th May - 14th June, Hawaii, Las Vegas, San Diego, San Fran, New York, LA, Hawaii

~mony - 11th May - 2nd June 2012 â€" LA, Orlando, Disney Caribbean Cruise, San Francisco

Jupiter123 - 24th - 29th May - Honolulu, Hawaii

Jorgo - 26th - 31st May Maui, 31st-4th June Honolulu

Satay chicken - 13th June - 2nd July 2012, LA, Vegas, Pismo Beach

2girlzandhoney - 16th June - 25th June 2012, LA, Anaheim

Cushla - June/July - Anaheim (Disneyland), Santa Monica, San Simeon, San Francisco, Portland

MY 3 SONS X – 5th-27th July, Anaheim, Santa Monica, NYC, Hawaii

DamiansMama - 16th August - 1st September

CTCT, 29th August 2012, Las Vegas, San Fran, Yosimite, San Fran, Monterey, Santa Barbara, LA, Anaheim

SleepyJean August 2012, Hawaii

Potato - 6th - 25th Sep 2012. Honolulu, LA, central coast California, Anaheim

kee/sicily - 8th September - 14th September 2012, Hawaii

*Marti* - 12th September 2012, New York

mum2kichisao - 13th September - 14th October, San Francisco, San Simeon, Anaheim, Las Vegas, San Diego, Orlando, New York, Cruise from Boston to Quebec

barrington - 14th September - 8th October 2012, US/Canada

KNL909 - 15th September - 3rd October 2012, Anaheim, Disney Cruise to Mexico

cassi8 - 18th September - 3rd October 2012, Anaheim, Las Vegas, Hawaii

snugglybug - 22nd September/October 2012, Anaheim, Yosemite, Las Vegas, LA

Jo_P - 22nd September - 12th October 2012, LA, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Disney Wonder Pacific Coast Cruise, Anaheim

rob6712col 25th September 2012, LA, Orlando, DC, Gettysburg, Philly, Boston, Niagara Falls, Albany, NY, LA

FionaM - September 2012, Hawaii

potato - September 2012 - Honolulu, LA, central coast California, Disneyland

Read-y - September 2012 - Hawaii (Maui, Big Island, Oahu)

Mum2KCIandS - September/October 2012 - Hawaii - Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Orlando, New York and then a cruise to Canada/New England

chobbs3 - September/October 2012, LA Grand Canyon, NY

Rowena - September 2012 - Washington DC, New York, Toronto, Banff, Vancouver, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Honolulu

Peanut - September/October 2012, New York

Reader: September/October 2012 - LA, NY, LA, San Fran, Yosemite

thebarnwellb4 - 26th October, ?

Jaxxie - 30th October 2012 - 15th November

carls888 - October 2012, La, Vegas, San Francisco, Berkeley, Pebble Beach, San Diego, Seattle

maxmum - October 2012, Hawaii

baf65 - 1st November 2012, LA, Orlando

Fabulous - late November 2012 to early January 2013 - Atlanta - Charleston - Savannah - Orlando - New Orleans

Brownie22 - December 2012, Hawaii

Blonde: December 2012/January 2013 - LA, Disney

jumpingbeans – March 2013, LA

Kee - 8th April 2013-5th May 2013, South Pacific cruise, Hawaii

Nanaimo Girl: July/August 2013 - LA - Vegas - San Francisco - Portland - Seattle - Vancouver Island - Alberta

minime3: September 2013 - Anaheim, San Fran, Vegas, NY

Madlock - Sept/Oct 2013 - Disney, Disney Cruise, Texas, Hawaii - Final plans TBA

IVL - 2013, Canada, LA, Hawaii

CarnivalKid, June/July 2014 USA

Lena, Nov/Dec 2016 - San Diego, Anaheim, San Fran, Yosemite, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, New York, Niagara, Hawaii

Kabailz - Dec 2017…it’s never too early to start planning!

If there's anyone who needs to be added or anything that needs to be updated, let me know original.gif

Anaheim dates:

Park Vue
15th-23rd Sept
30th Sept - 3rd Oct

16th-20th Sep
Portifino Inn

Disneyland Hotel
18th-22nd Sep

Howard Johnson (HOJO)
20th-23rd Sep

Park Vue 22-27 Sep
HoJo 9-14 Oct

Del Sol Inn
7th – 13th Oct

Edited by Jo_P, 28 April 2012 - 10:10 AM.

#4 GeraniumQueen

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:25 PM

Germany with family, and some skiing in Austria as well as a sidetrip to London for work which got extended with a girls weekend with some friends, Jo biggrin.gif

#5 Peanut

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:30 PM

GQ, enjoy your holiday!

Reader, I've done a fair bit of accommodation research along the New England coastline and prices aren't too bad for the Fall season.  For instance, I'm considering an overnight in Sandwich at a well rated motel (on Trip Advisor) and the price is pretty decent for that time of year.  I think that you could possibly pay more where the Fall colours are more evident inland, but along the coastline it doesn't seem too high.

#6 Jupiter123

Posted 12 April 2012 - 08:47 PM

Add me please biggrin.gif

Jupiter123 - 24th May to 29th May - Honolulu, Hawaii

This is a very unexpected trip for me and my first overseas.  DH is going to be working over in Hawaii for 2 months so I am meeting up with him for a few days.

#7 Jo_P

Posted 12 April 2012 - 09:03 PM

Ahh GQ that sounds fabulous!!!

jupiter123, you're added to the list original.gif You're only going for a few days?? I'd be going for the whole 2 months lol!!!

#8 Jupiter123

Posted 12 April 2012 - 09:12 PM

QUOTE (Jo_P @ 12/04/2012, 09:03 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
jupiter123, you're added to the list original.gif You're only going for a few days?? I'd be going for the whole 2 months lol!!!

Thank you for adding me.

I would love to go for the whole 2 months, unfortunately my boss would not be pleased. It was hard enough getting a week off as big stuff is happening at work right now and I kinda dropped it on him at the last minute.

#9 Coffeegirl

Posted 12 April 2012 - 09:50 PM

36 hours to go  eexcite.gif

Jo_P. can you please change my undecided after NY to Orlando. original.gif.

We got a deal on a hotel at Universal and we're going to surprise the kids original.gif. Haven't told them what we're doing after NY.  

Can't hang around. Need to go pack  ffear.gif

#10 cassi8

Posted 12 April 2012 - 09:55 PM

I'm in Anaheim 18th to the 22nd shall try to add ducky of some sort biggrin.gif We are staying Disneyland Hotel

Have a great trip Coffeegirl! looking forward to hearing all about it when you get beck biggrin.gif

#11 Princess Leila

Posted 12 April 2012 - 10:35 PM

I am in Anaheim 14th to 21st Sept... have not decided where we are staying yet...

#12 *Lena*

Posted 12 April 2012 - 10:39 PM

I have disappeared off the list.

#13 traceybrown

Posted 12 April 2012 - 10:54 PM

Pnut, I am in Montreal for 8-12 months.  It is beautiful.  Did you want some ideas on what to do here?

#14 hunter4

Posted 12 April 2012 - 11:33 PM

Just wanted to add for Reader and Peanut and anyone else who might be thinking about new england area in September/october you do have to be careful with accomodation.  during the fall season they do jack the prices up (i know of one hotel that costs $95 off season and $155 during peak).  Also weekends always cost more than during the week and just to add some fun at lot of places add a 2 or 3 night minimum stay over weekends.

That being said it is still possible to travel without booked accomodation, we've done it about three times now up into Vermont New Hampshire and Maine in the September/October period.  

If you are planning on doing it on the fly you may want to look at http://www.hotelcoupons.com.  These coupons can not be used to book in advance but if you are willing to just go with the flow you can get some really good deals.  Not great for accomodation in the big cities but if you're just looking for a nights accomodation passing through it's really worth it's weight in gold.

If anyone has any questions about this part of the world I'm happy to try and help (I'm currently living just outside Boston).

Peanut - hope you enjoy Sandwich it's a beautiful place.  I think that beause it's technically on Cape Cod a lot of people think of it as more of a summer vacation place but it does still get the beautiful colours in Autumn.

#15 kabailz13

Posted 12 April 2012 - 11:59 PM

Jo_P - I'd love your hotel list!! original.gif

I found some awesome and well priced villas in Orlando so I've started bookmarking options. Will be starting to save for this as soon as we have finished paying for Bali!!

For anyone who has done longish holidays to the US and stayed in mostly self-contained accommodation, what sort of price should I be looking at for accommodation and food per week? (wondering if I'll need to be working 3 jobs to pay for it all hehe)

I'm so excited and it's 5.5yrs away! When we go, our kids will be aged 16, 11 (will turn 12 while there), 9 and 6yr old twins (who will turn 7 while there). They are going to have such fun!!

#16 jorgo

Posted 13 April 2012 - 12:03 AM

QUOTE (Jo_P @ 12/04/2012, 08:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

[color="#696969"]mjaler - 22nd March - April 2012 19th

Whipmix - 7th May - 14th June, Hawaii, Las Vegas, San Diego, San Fran, New York, LA, Hawaii

Jupiter123 - 24th - 29th May - Honolulu, Hawaii

ooooh i have hawaii buddies lol
i'm maui- 26th - 31st may then honolulu 31st-4th june

#17 Reader

Posted 13 April 2012 - 07:01 AM

hunter4, thanks for that link, and the info. original.gif

#18 snugglybug

Posted 13 April 2012 - 07:43 AM

Who has been before and did a fair bit of driving? We are hiring are car for 16 days and I'm wondering how much to budget for fuel? Is there some website I can work this out? surely there is! laughing2.gif

Coffeegirl!!!!! even less by now, how exciting! have a blast!

#19 hunter4

Posted 13 April 2012 - 08:22 AM

snugglybug - try http://gasbuddy.com/ just choose the state your going to and then any of the other places it'll give you a good idea.  You're looking at about $3.80 - $4.10 per gallon at the moment depending on where you'll be driving.  theres 3.78 liters to a gallon so about $1 to $1.10 / liter.

#20 Peanut

Posted 13 April 2012 - 08:37 AM

Traceybrown, most definitely, I would appreciate any tips you can give!  I really enjoyed reading your blog and all I had to do was show my DH the photo of the view you had out your window at the Falls for him to agree to stay there!   biggrin.gif  

Places of interest to 5 and 7 year olds are top priority and can I ask, is Montreal city centre best avoided driving in or is it relatively okay?  I've been warned off driving in some places like Boston city due to the traffic.  

Hunter4, thanks for your advice.  I'm probably going to prebook at most places we intend to stop at, I'm not very good at "on the fly" travelling!  The coupon link is excellent however, so thanks for posting it too.  As above, I've been warned that driving in Boston is a bit of a nightmare, is that true?  I was thinking of making our way up the coast through Plymouth and Boston to Salem.  I just can't decide if Boston itself is worth trying to find parking to stop in.   unsure.gif

Snugglybug, GOOD QUESTION!  Hunter4, thanks again!

#21 hunter4

Posted 13 April 2012 - 09:35 AM

Peanut - I'm originally from Sydney so used to driving in traffic but personally I've never had any problems driving in Boston, certainly no more than any other city.  Parking is limited but theres usually a couple of good parking garages that aren't toooooo expensive that I use and have never had a problem getting a park there.  Generally I make sure I know which parking garage I want to go to and can just go striahgt there, in fact since the big dig went in I think it makes it easier in that you can get right into the city on the freeway and just jump off at the correct exit and you're right where you need to be.  The only real issue would be if you didn't know which exit you wanted.  If you can plan in advance where you want to go I don't see any problems.  I certainly wouldn't write off Boston due to traffic, though do try and avoid driving in in peak hour, but that generally goes for any city!

#22 traceybrown

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:09 AM

Peanut, we have a 3,5 and 6 year old!  They love going on the metro, it's so well set up.  The bio dome is our favourite.  We ended up getting season passes, there is a room downstairs where you can explore the exhibits etc.  every school holidays they run free program's.  They have three day museum and public transport passes.  Old Montreal is beautiful, the science centre is there, great for kids, then you walk back and have lunch....the parks are amazing we are near Westmount.  Squirrels everywhere.  Foods great.  Every weekend we try and pick a new place to explore.  Kids love it, just a shame the eldest HATES school here.   Driving is okay, they are a bit horn happy.  I have a really good kids book, how many days are you here for?  Have you booked a place to stay?  We stayed at the Residence Inn Westmount, right near Atwater metro, shopping, movies, etc.  Markets are fantastic, Atwater and Jean Talon.  You'll put kilos on just walking through them.  Oh and a few basic words of French will be fine, everyone is bilingual and if you make an effort, most are happy to speak English.

#23 traceybrown

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:15 AM

What would you recommend for a weekend in Boston?

#24 hunter4

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:52 AM

TraceyBrown - My Boston list of things to would include:

"duck tour" the kids love them and it gives you a really good overview of the whole city.  Can also do the prudential tower for a good view but not sure if it's necessary.

Read make way for ducklings by Robert Mclowsky with the kids then you can check out all the places in the book.  There are statues of the ducklings in the public gardens and depending on the time of year you can take a swan boat ride there too.  

Check out Boston Common.  The duck pond - you can swim there in summer and ice skate in winter (also a cute little playground for the kids).  

Walk the freedom trail.  Probably too much to do all at once, split it up into sections.

Section 1 Boston common - faneuil hall.    Includes Granery burial ground, old soulth meeting house, old state house and Boston Massacre site.   Behind faneuil hall is quincy market a great place for lunch - like a food hall, though places to sit down can be hard to find.  clam chowder is a local delicacy.

Section 2 The north end - another good place to eat if you like italian.  check out paul revere house and the old north end church, Cops Hill burying ground.  Can walk back around the waterfront some nice parks etc along the waterfront.

Section 3- Charlestown.  You can walk here from the north end or my preference is to go from fanuil hall, head east to the waterfront and jump on a ferry across the harbour to the USS constitution.  You can either do a tour or just wander around it but either way you will have to go througha full security checkpoint.  You can then walk up to the bunker hill monument if you want.

Check out the state house.  
A walk through the Beacon Hill area is beautiful.
Also the back bay area.  the shopping area is in the back bay area along newbury st.

If you feel you have time head out to Harvard (can use the subway - very easy to navigate).  there is a free tour of the university that is great I'll try and find the link again.  

If you want other "things" to do the Aquarium is meant to be great as is the childrens museum (although still haven't been so can't say from experience).  we have been to the science museum and it's good but I find that all these things are very similar to ones in other cities.

#25 Jupiter123

Posted 13 April 2012 - 12:17 PM

So what hotels are every staying in whilst in Hawaii?

I am yet to book the hotel (doing it this weekend) and I am looking at the Aqua Waikiki Pearl. I don't need to be right on the beach and I don't need anything fancy. I don't want to spend a huge amount either as I only intend on being there to sleep. Just something that is clean, tidy and with no bed bugs/cockroaches etc.

I am going to hire a car or moped whilst I am there if I need one, however I am not overly comfortable with the idea of driving on the wrong side of the road.

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