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threeacrewood
07-08-2007, 11:01 PM
Just wondering if anyone has driven from NJ and what was your experience like? What was your route and did you drive straight through or stop at a hotel? DH and I aren't sure whether to leave at night so the children sleep or leave in the morning, then stop at a hotel, sleep, then drive the rest of the way. Thinking of a trip end of April.
Thanks in advance for advice/tips and help!

Kaler131
07-08-2007, 11:12 PM
I have driven many times from Ohio....it's long trip. We always leave late at night and let the kids sleep (so they are not fighting with each other or constantly asking "Are we there yet? Why not? How much longer?"...etc) We drive about 10 hours one day, then stay overnight in a hotel. Then the next day we are refreshed and have the shorter part of the drive (about 6 hours) left.

storzo
07-08-2007, 11:18 PM
I've done it both ways. I'd have to say stopping for a night is much easier IMO, I got tired, stiff and cranky being stuck in a car straight through. When we stopped we made every effort to get to Georgia going down and Virginia coming home.

We took 95 straight down.

mattsmom2000
07-09-2007, 03:04 AM
We were thinking of driving from PA just outside of Philadelphia, but not sure what to expect either. I am in the same boat. It may be cheaper to fly if Southwest runs a great deal for us for January 2008 out of Philadelphia!

eliza61
07-09-2007, 06:42 AM
Just wondering if anyone has driven from NJ and what was your experience like? What was your route and did you drive straight through or stop at a hotel? DH and I aren't sure whether to leave at night so the children sleep or leave in the morning, then stop at a hotel, sleep, then drive the rest of the way. Thinking of a trip end of April.
Thanks in advance for advice/tips and help!


We're from southern NJ (about 20 miles outside of Philly). We have driven down a couple of times in the past. We leave early in the morning, I like to be past Washington DC area before 1:00. We generally break for a nice dinner and then continue on before stopping for an overnight hotel. I-95 is a pretty easy drive especially once past Virginia. speed limit picks up to 70 mph and the roads are pretty nicely maintained. How old are your kids? We try to go at least 10-12 hours before stopping.

bartleby1
07-09-2007, 07:39 AM
We've driven down from North Jersey quite a few times with our kids (now 7, 5, and 2). Our 7 year old will be making her 6th trip in August. We usually take 95 all the way down, but we've driven the 81 route a few times too just for variety. 95 is shorter and quicker, but 81 is more scenic.

We like to wake the kids really early the day we leave (usually around 4:00 AM). That way, they have slept enough to be excited to leave, but not enough to be fully rested. The excitement usually wears off after an hour or so and then they will fall back asleep and take nice long naps. We stop for the night at some point in South Carolina. I like to make it more than half way so that the next day's drive is shorter.

We did drive straight through one time when my oldest was 18 mths. She did great, but we were exhausted. Never again. We were supposed to alternate driving while the other person slept, but I was so nervous that DH would fall asleep behind the wheel, that I couldn't sleep.

Unregistered
07-09-2007, 08:08 PM
Well I drive down twice a year from staten island.I usually leave about 3 am and everyone sleeps till our first stop in virginia (usually around 8am ) I will drive down as far as St Augustine Fl.( usually 10 pm ),stay the nite and drive the rest of the way in the morning.We do have friends that like to drive as far as Florence SC. and then drive the rest of the way the next day.

scottny
07-09-2007, 08:38 PM
as a child my parents drove and we drove and stayed in hotel 1 night.

Now as an adult i have driven several times and i drive straight through. i left early in the morning with stopping.

I do not think it is a bad trip and it could be fun if you make it that way.

I forgot i took I95 all the way down.

disneydoula
07-09-2007, 08:57 PM
We too are in South Jersey and only drive to Disney.

We leave about 8 am, take 301 until Richmond, Va. then get on 95 and stop somewhere around South of the Border the first night. We make it to Disney by dinner the next day.

Oh, and I almost forgot...we have three kids, ages 10 11 and 16.

ShesAPirate
07-09-2007, 09:42 PM
My husband and I have done this drive from Central NJ. We couldn't do it straight through, and stopped overnight in the Atlanta suburbs. Waking up the next day, there's only a 6 or 7 hour drive left, so I find that to be a great place to stop. We took 95 to 85 to 275 to 75, etc., all the way down. It's not a bad drive, but that North Carolina into Virginia stretch is brutal, and traffic on the Capital Beltway in D.C. is usually horrendous - so I would try a route that avoids the Beltway, or make sure you don't arrive there during morning, lunch time, or evening rush hour.

PrincessEeyore
07-09-2007, 09:57 PM
coming from a *child's* point of veiw, well 15, ive driven to disney many time with the family. one time we left at about 7 at night to drive straight through. this was probably the most enjoyable car ride ive had to disney because it was late so my brother and i slept pretty much the entire trip. we had a mini-van at the time so my parents reclined the back seats, set up blankets and pillows, and made a bed for us. the trip was relaxing for my parents because we were almost always asleep, and the roads are much lighter at night. ive also driven to disney during the day numerous times. i was given toys, coloring books, ect., and although i was pretty occupied, it did get veryyy boring at times and alot of "are we there yet"s slipped my mouth. these are just opinions from a child, so maybe they might help you on your decision, maybe not. im from new jersey as well. enjoy your vacation!

ellenmiele
07-09-2007, 11:21 PM
We've driven from NJ five times w/kids. We leave at 6 pm and drive straight thru - DH and I take turns at the wheel while the other one sleeps and the kids sleep almost the whole time. We make great time with little or no traffic. We're usually in our resort by noon. Typically our stays are 7 nights and we drive home the same way. Twice we've taken the autotrain back which is great fun, and very relaxing, but pricey! We're going again in December with my parents for a 5 day trip so we're going to fly (and we found great airfares). But we really don't mind the drive at all.

Mousermom
07-09-2007, 11:43 PM
I've driven to WDW twice. Once in 1998 and once in 2004. Took 95 straight down both times. In 1998, we went with 3 carloads of people. It was very long and exhausting on that trip because we stopped for bathroom breaks quite often and we must have stopped at every McDonald's on the East Coast!!!! I'll never travel in a caravan again!! Too many people to deal with!!

However, in 2004, it was just me, DH and DS. We left around 2 a.m. and got to South of the Border at around 9:30 a.m. Had breakfast and rested for awhile and got to our hotel in Savannah around 1 p.m. I bought a CD with Disney songs to listen to on the way down. DS was asleep most of the time. He was almost 9 at that time. We left our hotel in Georgia at 10 a.m. and made it to Disney at maybe 2:30-3:00. Much easier the second time around.

We are planning to drive again next May to Port Canaveral for our cruise. Hope everything goes smoothly for that trip as well. We are trying to save some money by driving. Although, with the gas prices so high, it might be better just to fly. We'll see.

Good luck with everybody's transportation decisions!!

I Love Pluto
07-10-2007, 08:45 AM
I've done it both ways. I'd have to say stopping for a night is much easier IMO, I got tired, stiff and cranky being stuck in a car straight through. When we stopped we made every effort to get to Georgia going down and Virginia coming home.

We took 95 straight down.

We do the same thing! Maybe we share a brain?!?! :goodvibes

threeacrewood
07-10-2007, 08:15 PM
Thanks so much for all of your stories and great ideas! I have a much clearer perspective on the trip now and somewhat realistic expectations.
We too are trying to save some dollars by driving, but like some said, with the price of gas, we may end up flying last minute if the airfare is comparable. (two years ago we were all set to drive with just one child, but found air for 143 for each so it we didn't give driving a second thought!)
I also didn't realize how close WDW was to Georgia!

Albytaps
07-10-2007, 10:31 PM
I know I'm kinda late on this post but yea, I've driven to FL many times, but not usually straight to Disney.

I live in north Jersey and it usually takes about 18 hours or so to get from where I live to WDW. I have yet to stay at a motel overnight with my wife and kids, we're just too impatient and just wanna get it over with.

This time however, I want to make a stop, probably at Florence, SC. That's where I would usually stop with my parents.

I would be willing to make the stop at South of the Boarder but that place seems a little creepy... I never see too many people there.

postalcop
07-10-2007, 10:59 PM
we just got back from our drive down to WDW.
we are on the road by 3 am. we have the van packed with lunch, drinks, snacks, etc.. so we just stop for am coffee and bagel before getting on the NJ turnpike. then we will stop for gas and potty breaks. we also stop for the night in savannah, exit 94. there are alot of hotels and resuraunts at that exit. we got to the hotel at 5:45 pm. the next morning we are Disney aprox. 4 hours later, (if there is little traffic). we do have 2 chlildren, ds-5 dd-3. they just watch there movies or color, etc...

we only stopped for gas 5 times, driving down and coming home . the most we paid to fill up was $77.

well good luck on how ever you get there!!!

~sue

Katmat75
07-18-2007, 03:07 PM
I need a little help. This is our first time driving. We usually take the auto train or fly but they are both so expensive right now we figured it would be cheaper to drive (On a tight budget this year). There are four of us, myself, DH, DS 15 and DS 17.
Our check in date at WDW is 8/27/07. We are driving coming from South Jersey. We would like to stop for the night and not drive straight through. I would like to be at WDW for check in no later than noon time even by 10:00 AM if possible, even if our room is not ready we can still go to the parks. I'm trying to figure out when and what would be the best time to leave home and when and where to stop.

Can anyone give me any suggestions

pamouselover
07-18-2007, 03:29 PM
Hi,
I too will be driving to WDW in Aug and staying at CBR too!:goodvibes
We are leaving the day before checking in (25th) plan on driving to St. Augustine and spending the night at a hotel. Then heading to the resort in
the morning. Get hopper passes and head to AK.
I figured out that to be about two hours from the resort.


I need a little help. This is our first time driving. We usually take the auto train or fly but they are both so expensive right now we figured it would be cheaper to drive (On a tight budget this year). There are four of us, myself, DH, DS 15 and DS 17.
Our check in date at WDW is 8/27/07. We are driving coming from South Jersey. We would like to stop for the night and not drive straight through. I would like to be at WDW for check in no later than noon time even by 10:00 AM if possible, even if our room is not ready we can still go to the parks. I'm trying to figure out when and what would be the best time to leave home and when and where to stop.

Can anyone give me any suggestions

pamouselover
09-07-2007, 09:45 AM
Just returned and wanted to tell everyone that we had a great trip.:cool1:
I would drive again. :thumbsup2
Any ?'s feel free to Pm me!:goodvibes

crissichef
09-08-2007, 11:50 PM
I hate to be a pessimist but, I drove down once with my family when I was 8 years old and that was enough for me.......... I will NEVER do it again. Especially when I can get round trip airfare for under $500 for all 4 of us if you watch the sales on Airtran. My Dad asks us every time we go to Disney if we are driving or flying even though he knows the answer........He thought we had a great time driving......I really wonder if we were in the same car!!

PlutoPup
09-09-2007, 02:31 PM
My SIL drove down with her two little ones last yr. She stopped for the night going down to FL. Coming home, she made it back in 20 hrs.... drove non-stop because of the threat of a blizzard. The kids were cranky when they got home - rather deal with cranky at home than the park, KWIM?

BTW, nice to see all the NJ people!! :thumbsup2