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lnh'smom
06-21-2006, 02:31 PM
I have figured out approx. what it would cost us to drive to WDW. I have also found pretty decent airfare. By driving we would save about $400. We have 2 kids, DD4 and DS6 who also has ADHD. $400 is a lot of money to us, but I DREAD the idea of about 19 hrs in the car each way. :scared: If you were in our shoes, what would you honestly do? Please convince me one way or the other. Thanks.

mjbaby
06-21-2006, 02:39 PM
Is the difference of $400 for your whole family or $400 a piece? If for your family, then that's only $25 each way per person for the convenience of flying.

While it's true that flying has its own inherent hassles, my personal threshold is anything over 10 hours = flying. If flying is too expensive, then my mental health is even more so.

BUT, another option for you might be to split the drive into two days if you can. We're doing that on our upcoming Chatanooga trip and again later in the month to go to Wisconsin.

ZipaDeeDooDah
06-21-2006, 02:41 PM
Seriously, even though I hate flying I would rather spend the extra and fly - only because in our case it means more time at Disney as opposed to spending that extra time travelling on the road. 19 hours (each way!) is a looooooong time in a car with 2 young kids.

sandy6879
06-21-2006, 02:42 PM
We've made the drive from CT to FL once.....here's my opinion. When we FINALLY got there, we were too beat the first day to do anything. Last day, we had to leave early to get home. We ended up staying at a hotel over night both on the way there and on the way home. On the way home, because we didn't know EXACTLY where we'd stop, I figured we could just find any old hotel to stay at. WRONG. We ended up at the most awful hotel, to the point that I couldn't even sleep there. Driving home, I ended up with a speeding ticket for going about 10 miles over the limit in VA. All in all, would have been cheaper and less hassle just flying. I don't even consider driving anymore - it's worth it to me to fly, get a rental car, and make my life easier.

PS - I only have one child who whined "Are we there yet?" the entire way....I KNOW I couldn't make it with two doing it :)

Carrie Ellis
06-21-2006, 02:51 PM
Also consider wear and tear on your car. You will need another oil change I am sure when you get home. I consider myself needing a vacation too, not just the kids and hubby. Anything that makes my life easier is worth it otherwise I would rather just stay home!! Such as cooking alot on vacation! I think with your distance that with that amount it would be better to fly.

Mouse House Mama
06-21-2006, 02:55 PM
I drove to FL with my grandparents when I was 4. I am now 32 and hate car trips! :drive: I also have 3 children under 4. It is 24 hours to WDW from my house. That being said I would rather not eat the whole week than drive. $400 is alot of money -I agree with you there, but for me it would have to result in a savings of 4million for me to consider it. princess: JMHO.

lovemygoofy
06-21-2006, 03:02 PM
I don't have children so I can't really relate but I always go back and forth about flying versus driving especially now with gas prices and here are things I factor in to my decision:

1. How far do I have to drive to the airport and how much to leave my car while gone?

2. What kind of shape is the car in to drive on vacation? Do I think it can take the extra 1k miles or whatever and it not blow up or die in the next 6 months?

3. Am I going to stay over night on the way down or back and also include stops for food or other whatknots.

4.. Do I need to rent a car to get from the airport to my destination? Now because of the shuttle service to wdw thats not needed but if you are staying off site or planning off site trips that would need to be included.

5. Is the rest of my vacation paid for or saved up for? Do I know how much I'm planning for tixs, room, food, souvies and incidentals?

LOL can you tell I do alot of calculating but I know myself and I can't do longer than 12 hours at a time in a car before I'm ready to pull my hair out. I just get bored too easily. Hope you have a great trip no matter what.

azgal81
06-21-2006, 03:09 PM
There's no way I would drive that much and can you imagine the drive back after you already have been to WDW.....Ugh! We are considering flying to DL next year and it's only a six hour drive!

tinaluis
06-21-2006, 03:29 PM
I know how you feel - $400 is a lot of $$$. We were planning on driving down in August from Chicago (about 22-26 hours of actual driving time -- we stop overnight on the way there and the way back) and then I got a SWA DING fare for $54 each way -- total for all of us to fly with tax is $628. We've also reserved a car thru Budget near DTD for $169 for most of our trip. Of course, we could drive for about $200-$275 in gas, plus hotel overnight there and back $100, plus meals while driving $80 for a grand total of $380-$455 so it should have been a no-brainer, right? WRONG!!! I agonized over whether to purchase the DING fare because, no matter how you look at it, it still costs more to fly than drive. We did purchase the DING fare, but we will definitely drive down for our next trip in October, no matter how cheap airfares are!!! Good luck with your decision. I know it's a hard one.

Kellydelly
06-21-2006, 03:33 PM
I'd rather drive than waste money on flying. I enjoy seeing the sites between Michigan and Florida! I even have four kids six and under to tote along :) . I always make sure our trips are at least 10 days long to make the drive worth it, though. Next time we go to Florida (this December) we will be going for two weeks. Sure the drive back is usually more tiring than the one down, but we don't mind. Driving saves us over $1,000 when you consider airfare and rental car (we don't stay onsite).

disneyfreakk
06-21-2006, 04:05 PM
When you figured out the cost to drive to WDW, did you check the cost of gas at every place you are planning on filling up? Gas prices vary ALOT! So that is something to think about.

a Really Bad Egg
06-21-2006, 04:10 PM
Getting there in a few hours (or less)....priceless.

Fly.

My2Cinderellas
06-21-2006, 04:13 PM
I'd fly, but I hate long car trips.

$400 total - not even a question - fly!

$400 per person for a total savings of $1600, then I'd drive. that's a whole 'nother vacation sitting there...

MELSMICE
06-21-2006, 04:15 PM
For the additional $400, I'd fly.

Did you factor in a hotel both on the way there & back? I'd would probably be a difficult drive to do in one day. Also the cost of meals there & back. Even if you took snacks in the car you'll want to stop to eat.

Not to mention, minimum 2 entire days from your vacation, most likely 4 - what is that worth to you. I drove with my parents when I wasa younger, the first day is a total waste because you're so tired from the trip.

I'd definitely fly.

disneysnowflake
06-21-2006, 04:30 PM
If it was $400 total in order to fly I'd definately fly.

We live a 24 hour straight drive from WDW.

We left our house at 5:30am to drive 30 minutes to local regional airport. We boarded our commuter plane at 6:45am. We landed in D.C. 30 minutes later. We were on a plane again at 8am and landed at 9:45am. A towncar was waiting for us. We went to Publix, got sandwiches, water, etc. We checked into POFQ and were done eating lunch all before noon. I couldn't believe we were in WDW by noon that same day.

Had we started out on the road to drive at 5:30am, by noon we'd still need to drive 17 more hours to drive just to get there!!!

We would never drive. If we were within 8 hours of being there maybe, but no way would I drive.

daisyduck123
06-21-2006, 06:43 PM
For our trip last month, we considered flying. We have always driven, it's about 14 hours from where we are in Maryland. We considered flying instead because of the price of gas now but decided against it because then we would have needed to rent a car in Disney. We've never taken the WDW buses, we always use our van.

We also needed the van because of all the souvenirs we knew we'd be buying, & they did amount to $1500.00 - - no way was I going to pay to ship all that stuff home.

If saving the $400.00 is a big plus for you, then I'd drive. For me, I would use the money on extra souvenirs!!!

BTW...about the long trip in the car with the kids...I look at it this way...in the 1800's...if the pioneers could spend weeks on end, day after day, in a covered wagon with their kids (with no DVDs or Gameboys to entertain them), then surely I can spend 14 hours with my kids in the car.

runwad
06-21-2006, 06:53 PM
We drive should be 18 hours but can make it in 15 hours non-stop...take snacks & food in the van and only stop to get gas and then potty breaks at the same time. We get breakfast at a gas stop and usually pull in around noon. My husband does all the drivng and we all sleep in the van so we're ready to go when we get there. My kids do fine, they've never flown and know that it's not an option for us and if they want to go on vacation they'll need to be good on the drive and they always are. Kids are 10,8 & 6 but when we first started driving they were 2, 4 & 6...no problems.

PaulaSue
06-21-2006, 06:55 PM
Honestly I would fly. The time there instead of on the road is so much more worth it, IMO.

disneysteve
06-21-2006, 08:12 PM
We live about 17 hours away. We drive every year. Flying is a lot more expensive, especially when you add the cost of the rental car in Florida, which I'm guessing you haven't counted.

And we really don't lose that much Disney time by driving. If we fly, we leave Saturday morning. When we drive, we leave Friday afternoon and arrive Saturday evening. Either way, our first park day is Sunday. Coming home, we fly home Saturday. Driving, we also leave Saturday, so nothing lost on that end either.

pearlieq
06-21-2006, 08:26 PM
If it's $400 for the group I'd pay it in a heartbeat! But then again, I HATE car trips and would honestly probably pass on the vacation if I had to do 19 hours each way.

Which I guess is my roundabout way of saying, how much do you mind the car trip? Is it something you just personally hate, or do you not mind a road trip?

SWVA BGSU Fan
06-21-2006, 08:35 PM
If spending the extra $400 will cause you to regret your decision to fly during the trip I would say that you need to drive.

We've driven 13 hours with children and we've flown there a few times as well. We have been able to take advantage of the Magical Express by staying on site and had free transportation to and from the airport provided by Disney. You will certainly be more refreshed upon arrival if you fly.

Because of our flight schedules, we have been able to add 2 more park days with the same amount of vacation time taken (compared to driving).

java
06-22-2006, 06:25 AM
For me it is the reverse. I can't stand flying- with 4 kids it is a nightmare- all the stuff and then trying to keep the 2 little ones quiet and happy. YIKES that is stress in my book. But when it was just 4 of us total (we had one on one man defense with the kids) we would fly. Quicker and easier. Now for us it is easier to drive. In your situation, I think I would fly. Our trip is 16 hours and actually not that bad. UNLESS we hit traffic. We do stop overnight so add that cost into your planning(you can get a CLEAN decent room for around $70 a night on I95- some cheaper but scary locations- once in off season we had a $31 night rate on a Fairfield Inn :cool1: ) I would say take the $ out of it and which would you all prefer. $400 is a lot of $ but to me not make or break the decision kind of $(that is assuming $400 total)
For us airfare for 6 far outweighs the cost of driving.

disneysteve
06-22-2006, 07:20 AM
Here is the reply I just posted to another thread on this topic:

The "fly vs. drive" equation is not a simple one. We discuss it here often. It depends on a lot of factors like where you live, how many in your family, where you will be staying in Florida, etc.

For us, let's say I could get airfare for $150 RT. That's $450 for the 3 of us, $600 if one of our moms comes with us (like on our next trip in November). Add airport parking of $60 and another $20 for tips at the airport. That comes to $680. A rental minivan would be about $400 for the week. So total is about $1,100 to fly.

Now look at driving. We spend less than $250 on gas (and that includes gas used in Florida which we would have to pay for either way). One nite in a motel each way for about $50 each brings the total to $350. Throw in $30 for an oil change when we get back and you are still under $400.

So for us, it's roughly $400 vs. $1,100. Your results may vary.

lnh'smom
06-22-2006, 08:04 AM
It would be a total of $400 savings for the whole family. We wouldn't stay in a hotel on the way down or back. My husband is a straight through driver. We would leave at 8 or 9 at night so the kids would sleep. I wouldn't mind the drive if I could read or do something like that. I get major motion sickness so basically I would just have to sit there. As for figuring out the cost to drive, my husband's SUV is fairly new and he gets $12 oil changes. He always keeps track of his mileage so I took the lowest miles per gallon he has gotten, looked up the distance and figured $3.00/gal for gas. Then I added an extra $100 for food and whatever. We are staying on site and don't have any side trips planned. We did Sea World and Cape Canaveral last year so we won't do those again. Won't need a rental car. Airport parking is $65. We never get skycaps or anything at the airports so we don't have to tip anyone. I can't think of anything else. Maybe someone could explain this Ding thing that everyone is talking about? :confused3

lnh'smom
06-22-2006, 08:06 AM
I should have added that he gets his oil changes at the dealer and I figured $3 for gas since that is what it is around here. Maybe it is more expensive between Indiana and Florida.

MyZoeJane
06-22-2006, 08:11 AM
No way in H-E-double-hockey-sticks would I drive...

Personally, I couldn't consider 4 days worth of driving as part of ANY vacation unless the specific point is the road trip to see sights along the way (such as Highway 101 in Cali, or something).

Driving to save $400 bucks would ruin my vacation... The stress and exhaustion of spending two days to get there and two days back would negate the fun I'd have while Iw as actually there....

JMHO... ;)

sk!mom
06-22-2006, 08:16 AM
IMO, Only you can make this decision because only you know how much $400 matters in your family/ budget.

Early in our marriage, in the days of paying off DH's student loans, saving for the first home basically getting established, it would have been an easy decision for us because every vacation had to be done as cheaply as possible. In those days, we would have definitly driven.

Now, we would fly. We don't enjoy long car drives with children. Nor would we want to arrive at our destination exhausted from a straight through drive.
Now we are able to put a value on our time and don't want to spend several of our vacation days driving.

Good Luck with your decision.

KristiKelly
06-22-2006, 08:36 AM
When you figured out the cost to drive to WDW, did you check the cost of gas at every place you are planning on filling up? Gas prices vary ALOT! So that is something to think about.

Also, if you decide to stop and spend the night somewhere that's going to cost at lease $80 for something cheap, if you do that each way that's $160.00. You will need to stop and eat along the way and I know everytime we stop for gas our kids always want a snack so go ahead and figure in at least $100 for food & snacks along the way. So for a cheap hotel room and food you're up to $260.00. That's really only about $140.00 savings by not flying, and then the cost of gas can vary from state to state.

We live 10 hours aways and usually drive because 10 hours is not too bad. Last year we flew because we had a new addition, we had DS8, DD5 & DD 3 months. We also got Southwest for $39 each way.

This Sept. if we can get a good price for airfare, we'll fly but right now Southwest is $96.00. We just got back from the beach, a 3-1/2 hour drive and DD almost 1 cried all the way there and all the way back. I'm not looking forward to 10 hours of that. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for Southwest to lower prices.

MrsPete
06-22-2006, 11:02 AM
It would be a total of $400 savings for the whole family. We wouldn't stay in a hotel on the way down or back. My husband is a straight through driver. We would leave at 8 or 9 at night so the kids would sleep. I wouldn't mind the drive if I could read or do something like that. I get major motion sickness so basically I would just have to sit there. As for figuring out the cost to drive, my husband's SUV is fairly new and he gets $12 oil changes. He always keeps track of his mileage so I took the lowest miles per gallon he has gotten, looked up the distance and figured $3.00/gal for gas. Then I added an extra $100 for food and whatever. We are staying on site and don't have any side trips planned. We did Sea World and Cape Canaveral last year so we won't do those again. Won't need a rental car. Airport parking is $65. We never get skycaps or anything at the airports so we don't have to tip anyone. I can't think of anything else. Maybe someone could explain this Ding thing that everyone is talking about? :confused3The one thing I don't see here is the cost of getting from the airport to WDW. That can be expensive.

Pros for flying: Everyone arrives well-rested; more vacation time; no need for hotel, meals on the road

Pros for driving: Saves money; having a car available is nice for a grocery store trip, etc.; good time to have quiet time with the kids; no restrictions on luggage weight

For my family, I'd choose driving. My girls have been doing long-distance driving trips since they were babies, and they are wonderful travelers. It's a learned skill.

lnh'smom
06-22-2006, 11:14 AM
As far as getting from the airport to WDW, I was planning to use WDW's shuttle service. Can't remember the name off hand, Magic Express maybe? I heard that it was free till Dec but then I don't know what they will charge.

S. C.
06-22-2006, 11:32 AM
We drive every year from michigan. But we also like to make little side trips on the way home. To the beach or the mountains, Biltmore house, etc. different place every year.

Carrie Ellis
06-22-2006, 11:42 AM
Yep, only you can decide! The magical express will not cost you anything and my parents said that it went very smoothly for them last year.

Are you renting a car in Florida? If not then all you probably need to factor is airport parking.

I have 4 kids so I have usually chosen to drive every time we go somewhere because the deciding factor was so large. For a difference of $400 I would probably fly. For us it is usually a difference of $1200 to fly and $300 to drive. One time we rented a van to drive from VA to San Antonio to visit my husband's family. Our van had alot of miles on it so we thought it would be better to rent. I paid $400 to rent through hotwire. Picked up the van at the airport so we paid $6/day to park our old van. Plus we had all the gas there and back. We drove straight through both ways. On the way back at about 7am my husband was fighting not falling asleep so I took over. I got on the road and the speed limit was 70. I set my cruise at 70. I was driving fine and not falling asleep but kind of in a zombie mode. I did not realize that I hit construction area in NC (which was 55mph). Cops were everywhere at 7am, Sunday, weekend after Thanksgiving. The ticket cost me $300. Suspended my ability to drive in NC because I was 15miles over speed limit. Just moved to GA and had a hard time changing my license because NC never took it off my record. A big headache.

We should have flown! Not counting the stress on our bodies!

emh1129
06-22-2006, 12:24 PM
I would definitely fly.
When we take our trip, we will have a 2 year old and a 4 year old. No way would I put them in the car for that long.. it would be a huge headache and I think they would be miserable.
I think our 4 year old will be just as excited about the plane as he will be about WDW :)

disneysteve
06-22-2006, 01:47 PM
Also, if you decide to stop and spend the night somewhere that's going to cost at lease $80 for something cheap
We drive to Disney every year and we rarely pay more than $45 for a hotel along I-95, and often less. Occasionally, we've splurged for a better place and paid about $69 but I don't think we've ever spent $80. There's no need to spend that much as there are plenty of nice places under $50.

KristiKelly
06-22-2006, 02:39 PM
We drive to Disney every year and we rarely pay more than $45 for a hotel along I-95, and often less. Occasionally, we've splurged for a better place and paid about $69 but I don't think we've ever spent $80. There's no need to spend that much as there are plenty of nice places under $50.

We usually stop in Brunswick Georgia at a Comfort or Days Inn,hardly the Mariott, 2 years ago it was $72 with tax (that was from Expedia). We stayed in a place one year for $45 it was really small and it smelled like cat urine, we moved to a different room and it smelled like smoke and we were in non-smoking. Maybe it's the time of year or the town we stop in but that's been our experience with cheaper rooms. We try to stop in a well known safe area.

MyZoeJane
06-22-2006, 02:49 PM
Yep, only you can decide! The magical express will not cost you anything and my parents said that it went very smoothly for them last year.

Are you renting a car in Florida? If not then all you probably need to factor is airport parking.

I have 4 kids so I have usually chosen to drive every time we go somewhere because the deciding factor was so large. For a difference of $400 I would probably fly. For us it is usually a difference of $1200 to fly and $300 to drive. One time we rented a van to drive from VA to San Antonio to visit my husband's family. Our van had alot of miles on it so we thought it would be better to rent. I paid $400 to rent through hotwire. Picked up the van at the airport so we paid $6/day to park our old van. Plus we had all the gas there and back. We drove straight through both ways. On the way back at about 7am my husband was fighting not falling asleep so I took over. I got on the road and the speed limit was 70. I set my cruise at 70. I was driving fine and not falling asleep but kind of in a zombie mode. I did not realize that I hit construction area in NC (which was 55mph). Cops were everywhere at 7am, Sunday, weekend after Thanksgiving. The ticket cost me $300. Suspended my ability to drive in NC because I was 15miles over speed limit. Just moved to GA and had a hard time changing my license because NC never took it off my record. A big headache.

We should have flown! Not counting the stress on our bodies!


:eek: Holy smokes! That sucks!!! Yuck! I'm so sorry you had to go through that... :guilty:

disneysteve
06-22-2006, 04:26 PM
We usually stop in Brunswick Georgia at a Comfort or Days Inn,hardly the Mariott, 2 years ago it was $72 with tax (that was from Expedia).
For future reference, rather than booking in advance, stop at the state welcome center and pick up the RoomSaver guide with the hotel specials. I don't have the Georgia book handy, but I'm looking at a recent copy of the N. Carolina guide. Just as an example, for Fayetteville area along 95, Ramada is $38.99, Quality Inn is $34.99, Red Roof is $49.99, Comfort Inn is $49.99, Sleep Inn is $59.95, Hampton Inn is $54.95, etc. Rates for Fri and Sat nites are usually $5 more.

KinderTchr
06-22-2006, 04:44 PM
I'd fly for sure!

When I lived in SC it was about a 9 hr drive. That was definitely worth it to drive. We would load up the kids and drive mostly at night so the kids would sleep most of the way. My parents also did that with my sis and I when we were kids.

In 02 we drove from Austin TX - approx. 21 hour drive. Had to have 2 extra nights in hotel and lost 4 days due to travel time. Kids were 6, 8, and just turned 18. Newly 18 yr old just about drove us completely crazy constantly talking about how she was "now a legal adult and could do as she pleased."
DH's back hurt so badly after all the driving that he couldn't enjoy the parks. He had a massage at the GF and then felt better.

We are going again in Dec. Airline tickets are booked. It will be the first flight for DS now 14, DD now 11 and the legal adult is now employed and won't be going with us.

Kaye

ckoncurat
06-22-2006, 05:22 PM
Two-four whole days in the car with the kids? I would fly. We live 15 hours away, and we have never driven. But some people LOVE road trips. For me, it would spoil the trip.

silverspark7
06-22-2006, 05:26 PM
We're driving from New Orleans to WDW this July. My family has only flown to Disney once, and when we were kids, we ALWAYS drove. It was kind of fun because we each had "lap desks" and would get new coloring books for the occassion. :artist: We also played games in the car to help the time go by faster.

I suggest stopping halfway and spending the night somewhere. If you left your house around dinnertime, your kids would probably fall asleep before you get to the hotel, easing the drive a little. Then you'll be halfway there and the drive won't be NEARLY as bad. :thumbsup2

If you have a laptop, buy a car outlet charger thing, and let the kids pick out movies to watch on the trip. That's my new favorite thing to do. I plan on checking out my favorite TV show from the library and watching it the whole way to Disney.

IMO, the drive was always half the fun. :drive: I've got lots of memories of my family during road trips. Plus, it adds to the anticipation and makes it so much sweeter once you finally get to Disney!

zaja
06-22-2006, 06:32 PM
Unless you plan on making the drive a real 'part' of your vacation, i.e. - pit stops and taking in the area attractions on the way, or are on an extremely tight budget this trip, I would definitely fly! Being on the road for more than 5-6 hours is torture - well, to me anyway!

TENIA66
06-22-2006, 07:03 PM
we drive 14 hours one way since 1998, and my 6 year old also is EXTREMELY hyperactive....................the portable dvd players make a big difference....but we love the drive, the challenge of getting there, excitment about getting there i print off park maps for the kids and they write on them, planning their own routes, circling their favorites, making their plans, we watch the trip planning dvds and home disney trip movies on the way....on the way home, the current trip videos......by the way, travel sickness medication also has the additional side effect of "drowsiness" which has helped my 6 year old as he also will get car sick occasionally......

kuusimo
06-22-2006, 11:13 PM
Another deciding factor that no one has mentioned is the value of your time. We were facing a 21 hour each way drive to a family reunion. Southwest discounted tickets and it ended up being cheaper to fly. (how often does that happen?) But the real factor was DH missing work when he is self-employed. He would have missed over a week of work. Now it is 3 days of work.

So what is the real value of your time? Divide that $400 by the number of days you will be traveling, and that would give you your answer.

MELSMICE
06-23-2006, 07:39 AM
and the legal adult is now employed and won't be going with us.

LOL :rotfl2: This statement just struck me as so funny! I think I hear a little sarcasm there! :rotfl:

MELSMICE
06-23-2006, 07:42 AM
Another deciding factor that no one has mentioned is the value of your time.

You are absolutely right. DH & I are both self-employed also. You can't put a price tag on your time.

I can tell you that later in life I wouldn't be saying, "Wow, we have an extra $400 in the bank that we didn't spend that one year when we drove to Disney". My words would be more like, "Remember that trip to Disney in 2006 & what a great time we had? It was so nice to be able to spend so much time there!" :goodvibes

Laurajean1014
06-23-2006, 07:46 AM
$400 can easily get eaten up while "on the road." Car expenses, food, drink, stops, etc. - all add up. Plus you need to think about the time you are missing by not being on vacation or miss out of work.

I would not drive to save $400.

Best of luck in making your decision.

Katieplus4
06-23-2006, 04:33 PM
pirate: i would totally fly!!!
i have 4 kids-8,7,6 and 4 and we are going in Dec. It would be cheaper to fly, ( and we have done it) but it is so relaxing to fly. I save small treats so everyone is excited to get on and off the plane. It's my vacation too, and if it really means that i could have a little bit less stuff. . okay.

heartsy77
06-23-2006, 04:51 PM
Have you looked into the train? We live in Upstate Ny and are drving to Virgina, which is 5 hours, to get on the auto train. Prices where cheaper than flying, plus we have our mini van and don't have to rent a car! We paid $1099. for 3 adults 3 kids, which would have cost more to fly. I understand about your concerns, all three of my girls going has ADHD! There was no eay I was driving 24 hrs in car with them! My girls are excited to take the train, and most of the ride the will be asleep!!!

DMRick
06-23-2006, 04:57 PM
With what I often get SW for in Albany, that's looking expensive to me. It depends on when you are going of course, but SW is often $49 - $59 per person each way. YOu could have driven to Albany (a lot closer) stayed in the stay and park ($110) across the street, and flown out of here, IMO. Time wise, a savings, as well as a little cash savings.

Maybe you are going at a crowded time? I think the most we have paid, during winter break was $79 each way per person.

Have you looked into the train? We live in Upstate Ny and are drving to Virgina, which is 5 hours, to get on the auto train. Prices where cheaper than flying, plus we have our mini van and don't have to rent a car! We paid $1099. for 3 adults 3 kids, which would have cost more to fly. I understand about your concerns, all three of my girls going has ADHD! There was no eay I was driving 24 hrs in car with them! My girls are excited to take the train, and most of the ride the will be asleep!!!

travelitis
06-23-2006, 10:09 PM
When you calculated that savings, did you take into acct. that by not driving there's also car rental and gas?

If that $400 savings is taking into acct. the road food and a hotel stay, then I'd drive it. I'd rather use that for character meals than a flight. We used to drive 15 hrs. from TX to Orlando, and by leaving about 6 p.m. and driving through the night, the kids were calm. They watched TV, played Gameboy, and slept. My dh and I took shifts behind the wheel. It was so painless that we even did this for a 2 nt. stay once. We'd arrive about 10 a.m. and hit the parks, but we'd call it an early night (6 p.m.).

heartsy77
06-24-2006, 06:41 AM
Flying out of Albany was a thought, but we are going at the end of January and I didn't want to drive to Albany throught the snow! Plus if we where flying I would want a direct route, no changing planes with 3 kids !

DMRick
06-24-2006, 07:16 AM
Plus if we where flying I would want a direct route, no changing planes with 3 kids !
We're direct with Southwest. In under three hours (plus the hour at the airport) and we are there.
The best thing is to come the day before, so you have leeway in case of snow. The hotel across from the airport is nice and we sometimes rent a room in the winter for the grands, to swim and just have fun with grandma. Then you can leave your car for the week at no extra charge. Our fares have been so competitive, it's really been worth the trip. Last week the ding was for $45 each way!

Mouse House Mama
06-24-2006, 07:48 AM
I don't remember but will they need to rent a car? We never rent a car at WDW. We stay on site and use Disney transportation and ME. Whatever you decide I hope you have a great trip! princess:

Dorisk3
06-24-2006, 02:21 PM
We drove last September from NJ- about 18 hours on the way down- broke it up into 2 days on the way back. This year we are flying- I figured we'd save about the same $400 if we drove- but the following factors are why I wouldn't drive.

First, wear and tear on car- an expense whether it seems concrete or not. The minivan was trashed and I mean trashed when we got back from snacks, entertainment, drinks, you name it. Plus it now had an extra 3000 miles on it.

Second, all the small unforseen expenses to occupy two young children in the car- puzzle books, games, snacks, candy, and all the stuff that entails.

Third, food on the way down and up- we packed lunches for the way down- but of course still had dinner, then the way up had to pay for all the meals plus one night at a hotel.

Fourth, putting yourself in harms way. I think statistically its safer to fly then drive, but also when you think about it, some of the rest stops can be scary and alot of hotels off the highways can be kind of scary too.

Fifth- time is money. My DH and I figured out our time is worth money too. Think of that $400 dollars spread over 38 hours (both ways)- that works out to 10.52 cents for the whole family per hour of traveling. OK, say by the time you take the plane and get home round trip the whole thing is say 12 hours total- that's still 26 hours extra of driving, divided by 400- 15.38 per hour saved. My time is worth more than 15.38!!!!

I have strong feelings about driving long distances, to me they are boring and endless. You are exhausted when you arrive and then have that drive to look forward to when you are leaving. A lot of people I know drive from NJ and they say, its not problem, its easy- but unless you love sitting in a moving vehicle and staring out a window- I'd definetly fly! Good luck in your decision!

rmom50
06-24-2006, 02:30 PM
Fly! Kids will love it. Have fun! :Pinkbounc