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nevets88

Tips for Driving from NE to Florida

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It's been awhile since I've done one of these, figured I'd hit the forum up for some advice. I'm thinking of driving down to Ft Lauderdale/Miami or Jacksonville if the weather report gets better, from New York around the end of the month. Any tips? Thinking of breaking it up into two legs. Get to Savannah, sleep, then early morning to whatever city in Florida. I mean, it's just your typical long haul US drive right? 

 

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You may want to think about stopping in Virginia and grab the Amtrak auto-train.   Put your car on the train and go down to Florida that way.  

Good Luck

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9 minutes ago, nevets88 said:

it's just your typical long haul US drive right? 

Pretty much.

If you're taking I95 there are plenty of rest areas and gas stations up until about South Carolina, then they tend to be more spread apart. I start my drive in the evening so I don't hit rush hour traffic in the Baltimore-DC area. Keep an eye on your speedometer.

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Get on I-95 and head south.  Yep, 2 days with a nice dinner, a few drinks, and a good nights sleep is the way to go.  

Savannah is great If you’re going all the way to Ft Lauderdale or Miami.  It’s only about 2 more hours from there to Jacksonville though so it kind of defeats the purpose of the stop if that’s where you’re headed.  Florence is probably better for Jacksonville...

The auto train is a special kind of hell if you’re really intent on beating yourself up.  

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You are just in time, Nevets. Weather is lovely. Winter prices just started.  Try out Plantation Preserve, Deer Creek, and Osprey Point.  Some of my favorites.

Stay in Georgia if you can on the trip down. Hotels on the Florida side of the border are a bit more expensive due to taxes.

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This is good info folks. Thanks!

12 minutes ago, billchao said:

Pretty much.

If you're taking I95 there are plenty of rest areas and gas stations up until about South Carolina, then they tend to be more spread apart. I start my drive in the evening so I don't hit rush hour traffic in the Baltimore-DC area. Keep an eye on your speedometer.

You do the overnight drive? How long does it typically take?

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2 minutes ago, David in FL said:

The auto train is a special kind of hell if you’re really intent on beating yourself up.

My mother took the train down to FL once and says she'd never do it again. On the way down, she said the A/C was too cold and they ran out of blankets. At one point something happened to the dining car and they didn't have food, so they had to stop somewhere and wait for KFC. On the way back the engine broke down at 5AM and nobody could use the bathrooms.

Horror stories aside, the train actually takes longer to get to FL than it would take to drive there, and you're stuck on a train.

7 minutes ago, nevets88 said:

This is good info folks. Thanks!

Are you going by yourself? If so, have you considered flying? The only reason I drive to FL is due to the cost of four plane tickets plus a rental car. If I was going down by myself there's no way in hell I'd spend almost 20 hours on the road, pay for gas, food, and a motel stay both ways. And that's before you factor in how I value my time, how much I dislike driving, and how dangerous it is.

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1 hour ago, nevets88 said:

It's been awhile since I've done one of these, figured I'd hit the forum up for some advice. I'm thinking of driving down to Ft Lauderdale/Miami or Jacksonville if the weather report gets better, from New York around the end of the month. Any tips? Thinking of breaking it up into two legs. Get to Savannah, sleep, then early morning to whatever city in Florida. I mean, it's just your typical long haul US drive right? 

 

This won't help you but you brought back memories.  As a 19 year old I drove from St. Louis (first time on my own) to Miami Beach.  To live there and play golf every day.  It was winter.  Motel stops in Tennessee and in Valdosta, Georgia.  Stopped along the way to play my first ever Florida golf course in Orlando.  The moment I stepped onto the course I realized why Florida golfers are better than Missouri golfers... Tom Watson not withstanding.

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53 minutes ago, nevets88 said:

You do the overnight drive? How long does it typically take?

Depends how often I stop and for how long, but it usually takes me a little over 17 hours to drive straight to Orlando.

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14 minutes ago, billchao said:

Depends how often I stop and for how long, but it usually takes me a little over 17 hours to drive straight to Orlando.

I should probably stop fretting the 9 hour drive to Bandon Dunes.

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I checked Google Maps, and it is almost 1300 miles from NYC to Miami... with the cost of gas and lodging and meals, it could come up to well over $250 one way.   If you fly into Sarasota, it is $207 roundtrip from NYC, and there are probably even better deals to Orlando or Ft Lauderdale, ...   You can use the $200 plus in savings to rent a car and you are about even with costs,  but a lot less wear and tear on your body.

Whatever you choose, I hope you have a fantastic trip and an equally fantastic visit to the Sunshine State.

 

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13 hours ago, JuanTheGolfer said:

I checked Google Maps, and it is almost 1300 miles from NYC to Miami... with the cost of gas and lodging and meals, it could come up to well over $250 one way.   If you fly into Sarasota, it is $207 roundtrip from NYC, and there are probably even better deals to Orlando or Ft Lauderdale, ...   You can use the $200 plus in savings to rent a car and you are about even with costs,  but a lot less wear and tear on your body.

Whatever you choose, I hope you have a fantastic trip and an equally fantastic visit to the Sunshine State.

 

Thanks for the info, @JuanTheGolfer. If I were doing this solo, I would do this, but going with family and a pet, so car is easier. 

17 hours ago, billchao said:

Depends how often I stop and for how long, but it usually takes me a little over 17 hours to drive straight to Orlando.

That is making good time. 

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16 hours ago, JuanTheGolfer said:

I checked Google Maps, and it is almost 1300 miles from NYC to Miami... with the cost of gas and lodging and meals, it could come up to well over $250 one way.

Gas would be about $100. You can do lodging and meals for well < $150.

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Just make sure its well worth it.

Recently drove to Chicago and back (yes traffic was awful) that resulted in no payoff to me other than getting my brother to a bleeding doctor's appointment he couldn't otherwise get to. 

Important for him, but that really sucked. He owes me big time.

 

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22 hours ago, billchao said:

Depends how often I stop and for how long, but it usually takes me a little over 17 hours to drive straight to Orlando.

Florida is a stupid, long, monotonous slog.  It takes about 4 hours from the Georgia border to Orlando, and another 3 to Ft. Lauderdale.  Most of that is through emptiness.  Flat, tree-lined scrubland.  Living here, you really do not leave the state unless you plan to be gone for more than a few days because it is so remote.  And that is usually by air anyway. I know roughly as many people from Latin America and the Caribbean as I do from other states.

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5 hours ago, nevets88 said:

That is making good time. 

Traffic is pretty smooth at night for the most part and the speed limit is 70 most of the way.

41 minutes ago, Cantankerish said:

Florida is a stupid, long, monotonous slog.

Most of I95 is a stupid, long, monotonous slog, especially in the middle of the night.

43 minutes ago, Cantankerish said:

I know roughly as many people from Latin America and the Caribbean as I do from other states.

Me, too, but I live in a state people generally retire and move out of.

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46 minutes ago, Cantankerish said:

Florida is a stupid, long, monotonous slog.  It takes about 4 hours from the Georgia border to Orlando, and another 3 to Ft. Lauderdale.  Most of that is through emptiness.  Flat, tree-lined scrubland. 

You’ve obviously never driven I-10 across Texas!

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56 minutes ago, Cantankerish said:

Florida is a stupid, long, monotonous slog.  It takes about 4 hours from the Georgia border to Orlando, and another 3 to Ft. Lauderdale.  Most of that is through emptiness.  Flat, tree-lined scrubland.  Living here, you really do not leave the state unless you plan to be gone for more than a few days because it is so remote.  And that is usually by air anyway. I know roughly as many people from Latin America and the Caribbean as I do from other states.

But that long, tedious drive feels shorter when there's a round of golf waiting at the end of it.

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