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View Full Version : Best route - Chicago to Orlando


2dogmom
03-28-2012, 03:50 PM
I know there are some old threads out there with routes from the Chicago area to Orlando. I was wondering if anyone can share what is the best route you have taken. I plan on leaving from the Southwest suburbs (Oswego/Aurora area). Also, what do you do about getting good rates at a hotel along the way. I plan to drive us as far as we can make it (hopefully past Atlanta) and stop for the night. TIA!

Gumbo4x4
03-28-2012, 04:28 PM
http://classic.mapquest.com/maps?1c=Chicago&1s=IL&1y=US&1l=41.884151&1g=-87.632408&1v=CITY&2c=Orlando&2s=FL&2y=US&2l=28.538231&2g=-81.377388&2v=CITY

2dogmom
03-28-2012, 04:53 PM
I know I could mapquest it, but I have read about avoiding certain highways/truck routes so I was looking for firsthand knowledge of what was good.

Gr8t Fan
03-28-2012, 05:07 PM
We used to take I57 to I24 to I75 to the Turnpike. Last trip we took I65 (to I24 to I75 to Turnpike) through Indiana and felt we made better time, and the road conditions overall were better. We're going to take I65 again this Summer as DH and I both felt it was an easier/faster drive.

As far as a hotel on the way down, we used to stop just before Atlanta (between 10-11pm and used Priceline for our hotel) but on our last trip we kept driving and did just fine. The way home was a LOT harder and we struggled and stopped at a rest area in Indiana for an hour or two, but we're planning the same return trip this year.

cruisingkat
03-29-2012, 06:18 AM
We live in the Naperville, Downers Grove area and drive to FL and Disney about 4 times a year or more. We have tried (a couple of times) the I65 route through IN that the previous poster likes and found that we prefer the 355 to I80 to I57 to I24 to I75 to Florida Turnpike route better. We found that the time difference is minimal between the routes (less than 1/2 hour difference). I65 has way more truck traffic and is more stressful - at least in our opinion.
We do divide the trip into two days. On the way down, we stop in Forsyth, GA south of Atlanta. By leaving there by 11am, we can make it to Disney around 3pm.
On the way back, we stop in Manchester, TN - northwest of Chattanooga.
Both of these stops puts more than half the driving on the first day.
The one thing that I would caution you on is to watch your speed in GA especially in Turner County (mile marker 85-74) to the FL border. There have been times where we have seen as many as 4 sheriff's cars clocking in a ten mile stretch.

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 09:23 AM
Thanks for the route info. Good to know about the GA speed traps (at least that is what it sounds like).

dgr1973
03-29-2012, 09:30 AM
I live in the Chicago area and for us the best route is to get ourselves to O'hare or maybe Midway in your case and fly to Orlando!;):rotfl: Just joking with ya! We have never driven so I can't say cause I can barely stand stand the drive to the Dells! Good luck.:thumbsup2

hearts8701
03-29-2012, 09:32 AM
we live in chicago o'hare area and drive down about 4 times a year my friends drive from oswego and take 57
we prefer 65 to 24 to 75 to the turnpike to 429 exit at western way to disney we stop just passed atlanta on the way down atlanta is about 6-61/2 hours to disney we drive straight thru going home
heavy traffic spots are nashville where 65 meets 24 avoid rush hour traffic in atlanta at any cost
we never make hotel reservations unless its a hoilday when i enter georgia stop at a welcome center for a hotel coupon book when we get tired we have plenty of choices to choose from i tend to stop at exits that have what will need in the AM such as gas, a drive thru breakfast & coffee
to make the time go by i rent movies at redbox and return them at 7-11 on 192 or any walmart kangaroo gas station in fl exit 375 has a redbox

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 09:37 AM
I live in the Chicago area and for us the best route is to get ourselves to O'hare or maybe Midway in your case and fly to Orlando!;):rotfl: Just joking with ya! We have never driven so I can't say cause I can barely stand stand the drive to the Dells! Good luck.:thumbsup2

This is my first time driving since 1995. We normally fly, but with 5 of us, it gets expensive, plus I am getting married down there to I will be having SO MUCH more stuff that I would typically take. My kids are at least excited to be able to check more states off of their visited list ;)

we live in chicago o'hare area and drive down about 4 times a year my friends drive from oswego and take 57
we prefer 65 to 24 to 75 to the turnpike to 429 exit at western way to disney we stop just passed atlanta on the way down atlanta is about 6-61/2 hours to disney we drive straight thru going home
heavy traffic spots are nashville where 65 meets 24 avoid rush hour traffic in atlanta at any cost
we never make hotel reservations unless its a hoilday when i enter georgia stop at a welcome center for a hotel coupon book when we get tired we have plenty of choices to choose from i tend to stop at exits that have what will need in the AM such as gas, a drive thru breakfast & coffee
to make the time go by i rent movies at redbox and return them at 7-11 on 192 or any walmart kangaroo gas station in fl exit 375 has a redbox

Good point about the coupon books. I was also hoping there would be a lot of redboxes along the way, besides the stash I'm sure we will bring.

dgr1973
03-29-2012, 09:50 AM
This is my first time driving since 1995. We normally fly, but with 5 of us, it gets expensive, plus I am getting married down there to I will be having SO MUCH more stuff that I would typically take. My kids are at least excited to be able to check more states off of their visited list ;)



Oh yay congrats how exciting!!! I agree it is very expensive to fly and I see you will be there the same time as us and this trip is costing 1300.00 for 4 of us when in the past it has been around 700.00-800.00! It was hard to pay that much more but the thought of driving for me:scared1::eek: but I know so many people that do it and don't mind. I think I have adult A.D.D. lol!

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 09:53 AM
Oh yay congrats how exciting!!! I agree it is very expensive to fly and I see you will be there the same time as us and this trip is costing 1300.00 for 4 of us when in the past it has been around 700.00-800.00! It was hard to pay that much more but the thought of driving for me:scared1::eek: but I know so many people that do it and don't mind. I think I have adult A.D.D. lol!

Thanks! I priced at least $1,500 for flights. That's crazy. A far cry from the good old cheap days. Plus my daughter and I get severe migraines on descent on flights so it may be worth driving. I do have a lot of memories of driving when I was little, hopefully I will have good memories with the 3 girls :goodvibes

Suzanne033
03-29-2012, 10:18 AM
We drove to Disney last year from NW Indiana. We took I94 to I65 to I24 to I75 to US27 to US192. We were in Chattanooga by 2am and got to Kissimmee at around 11:30am.

Edited to say: I forgot to add that we stopped for dinner in Louisville for about an hour and we also stopped just south of Valdosta, Georgia for breakfast for about an hour.

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 10:40 AM
We drove to Disney last year from NW Indiana. We took I94 to I65 to I24 to I75 to US27 to US192. We were in Chattanooga by 2am and got to Kissimmee at around 11:30am.

Edited to say: I forgot to add that we stopped for dinner in Louisville for about an hour and we also stopped just south of Valdosta, Georgia for breakfast for about an hour.

What time did you start your adventure?

Suzanne033
03-29-2012, 10:50 AM
What time did you start your adventure?

We left around 4:00pm (Eastern time).

We live abt 30 minutes east of I65 so we had quite a debate on whether to go west and take I65 or go towards South Bend and take US31 to I65 in Indianapolis. I think we made the right decision because US31 has quite a few stoplight especially around Kokomo.

Gumbo4x4
03-29-2012, 11:46 AM
I know I could mapquest it, but I have read about avoiding certain highways/truck routes so I was looking for firsthand knowledge of what was good.

Sorry, didn't mean to imply you couldn't have found that on your own. Just saying were it me the 65/24/75 route is the way *I* would go rather than 57/24/75 :)

cruisingkat
03-29-2012, 01:41 PM
Thanks for the route info. Good to know about the GA speed traps (at least that is what it sounds like).

And the thing about GA speed traps is that there isn't a set fine like in IL - it could run in the hundreds. Also if you are 15 mph or more over there is an extra $200 tacked on by the state. Turner County uses Laser guns so a radar detector doesn't help.

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 02:23 PM
Sorry, didn't mean to imply you couldn't have found that on your own. Just saying were it me the 65/24/75 route is the way *I* would go rather than 57/24/75 :)

No problem! Thanks!

Gumbo4x4
03-29-2012, 02:36 PM
If you DO take the 57 route, shout out. I probably have everything that exists from I64-Chattnooga memorized :rotfl:

2dogmom
03-29-2012, 02:44 PM
If you DO take the 57 route, shout out. I probably have everything that exists from I64-Chattnooga memorized :rotfl:

Gumbo, my plan is to stay the night in Chattanooga and see some sights and also go to Ruby Falls/the cave there and probably lookout mountain. Where would be a good place to stay? I haven't been there in years, lots of years. lol

Gumbo4x4
03-29-2012, 03:13 PM
Gumbo, my plan is to stay the night in Chattanooga and see some sights and also go to Ruby Falls/the cave there and probably lookout mountain. Where would be a good place to stay? I haven't been there in years, lots of years. lol

We usually grab a Super 8 or something similar if we stay in Chattanooga. There's tons of options though. If we can get in there early enough, we'll hit the aquarium on arrival night, then fast food & let the kids swim at the hotel. Then Lookout Mtn the next morning before heading out.

2dogmom
04-05-2012, 04:52 PM
I have one more somewhat related question. I'm not sure what states enroute to WDW have tolls. Will an I-Pass (Illinois toll payment system) work for all the tolls? I was pleasantly surprised it did when we went to Cedar Point (OH) last summer.

cruisingkat
04-05-2012, 05:54 PM
No the I-pass is not compatible with Florida Toll roads. Florida uses the Sun Pass which uses a different protocol from the I-pass. You would want to take the Florida Turnpike (a toll road) from I75 to Disney. You could continue to I4 to avoid the toll road, but saving the toll it isn't worth the extra mileage or time.
If you plan on driving to Disney often, it might be worth it to buy a Sun-pass. You can get a Sunpass sticker for a minimal amount ($5 for the sticker and a minimum of $10 to the account)- however it must be affixed to the windshield and is not transferable.

2dogmom
04-06-2012, 10:49 AM
Thanks for the info. I'm just hoping to survive this drive down ;)

MrMarv
04-06-2012, 11:33 PM
You might consider shooting for spending the night in any of the suburbs on Atlanta's south side; I'd recommend Morrow, GA, which is 135 miles south of Chattanooga, and some 430 miles from WDW.

But as others have stated, you have plenty of options, and it all depends on what time you leave Aurora for the 12 hour trip to Morrow; there'll be plenty of hotels in all price ranges at the Jonesboro Rd. exit (HWY 54), as well as McDonalds, IHOP, Soneys, Cracker Barrel & all the rest.

Have a great trip!

http://www.roomsaver.com, http://www.wyndhamrewards.com, and http://www.choicehotels.com have all the hotels and motels you'll ever need in all price ranges.

drinkme
04-07-2012, 12:31 PM
The 2 times we drove from Chicago (never again! lol), we went both ways: I-65 & I-57. We thought I-57 was better with snow removal, but you won't have to worry about that driving in June.

The drive through Illinois and Indiana are both boring, so I don't think it really matters! lol.

Congrats on your wedding!

Oh, and when we drove the last time (years ago), I went on McDonalds website and it has a map feature on it. You put in your destination and it lists all of the playlands along your route. It comes in handy when you have small kids who have been sitting in car seats for hours. Though, once you get south of Kentucky, we noticed the playlands were all outdoors.

If I can find my travel info from our drives, I'll post back on where we stayed in Chattanooga. We had 2 great hotels we stayed at. One was a inexpensive one-bedroom suite. This was in a business district with more conference-style hotels. It had a pool, and the room had lots of space, so it worked for us. The other one was near the housing districts. Affordable family-style restaurants within walking distance. It had a pool, too.

HTH

peppermintpea
04-07-2012, 10:22 PM
We are going to drive for the 1st time ever STRAIGHT THROUGH!..... We always fly but those rates are outrageous!!!!
We also live in the area of the OP and we were thinking i65. Hmmmm but peeps are saying different interesting......
Anymore tips? Keep them coming!:goodvibes

Suzanne033
04-09-2012, 11:00 AM
Gumbo, my plan is to stay the night in Chattanooga and see some sights and also go to Ruby Falls/the cave there and probably lookout mountain. Where would be a good place to stay? I haven't been there in years, lots of years. lol

Right now we have reservations just south of the I24/I75 interchange at a Holiday Inn Express (http://www.hiexpress.com/hotels/us/en/chattanooga/chaer/hoteldetail)

However, after reading some of the comments I might leave a couple hours earlier and try to get to near Atlanta. Having only 400+ miles left for the next day's drive is very attractive.

2dogmom
04-09-2012, 11:04 AM
You might consider shooting for spending the night in any of the suburbs on Atlanta's south side; I'd recommend Morrow, GA, which is 135 miles south of Chattanooga, and some 430 miles from WDW.

But as others have stated, you have plenty of options, and it all depends on what time you leave Aurora for the 12 hour trip to Morrow; there'll be plenty of hotels in all price ranges at the Jonesboro Rd. exit (HWY 54), as well as McDonalds, IHOP, Soneys, Cracker Barrel & all the rest.

Have a great trip!

http://www.roomsaver.com, http://www.wyndhamrewards.com, and http://www.choicehotels.com have all the hotels and motels you'll ever need in all price ranges.

From all my research, I want to get past Atlanta and as far south as possible. If I can get even more than 12 hours, I will be happy, not so sure about the kids.

The 2 times we drove from Chicago (never again! lol), we went both ways: I-65 & I-57. We thought I-57 was better with snow removal, but you won't have to worry about that driving in June.

The drive through Illinois and Indiana are both boring, so I don't think it really matters! lol.

Congrats on your wedding!

Oh, and when we drove the last time (years ago), I went on McDonalds website and it has a map feature on it. You put in your destination and it lists all of the playlands along your route. It comes in handy when you have small kids who have been sitting in car seats for hours. Though, once you get south of Kentucky, we noticed the playlands were all outdoors.

If I can find my travel info from our drives, I'll post back on where we stayed in Chattanooga. We had 2 great hotels we stayed at. One was a inexpensive one-bedroom suite. This was in a business district with more conference-style hotels. It had a pool, and the room had lots of space, so it worked for us. The other one was near the housing districts. Affordable family-style restaurants within walking distance. It had a pool, too.

HTH

Thanks! Our kids are 15, 11, and 9, but may be tempted to go to the playland. I do plan on throwing a soccer ball in the car so we have something to kick around at rest areas. Please share any Chattanooga info you can find.

2dogmom
04-09-2012, 11:07 AM
We are going to drive for the 1st time ever STRAIGHT THROUGH!..... We always fly but those rates are outrageous!!!!
We also live in the area of the OP and we were thinking i65. Hmmmm but peeps are saying different interesting......
Anymore tips? Keep them coming!:goodvibes

Looks like you go before me. Be sure to update what worked for you ;)

MrMarv
04-10-2012, 02:43 PM
My primary reason for suggesting that you spend the night south of Atlanta would be because their rush-hour traffic can be almost as gruesome as it is out here in LA.

If you spent the night in Chattanooga, you'd have to be out of your hotel & on the road extremely early in order to beat Atlanta's traffic.

If you spent the night in one of those suburbs, you could rise at 6AM, be on the road by 7AM, & arrive at WDW in the early afternoon, depending on how long and where you had breakfast, and a potty break/snack shop stop between suburban Atlanta & WDW.

The 355/I80/I57 route has gotten more votes than the I65 route on this board from what I recall, but it's been pretty close.

HTH.

MrMarv
04-10-2012, 02:58 PM
Regardless of which route you choose, be sure to visit http://www.roomsaver.com and http://www.hotelcoupons.com to print some discount coupons; you may or may not be able to use them if you arrive in either Chattanooga, Atlanta, or anywhere else in both directions late at night, but just showing them to the desk clerk could save you a few bucks.

Good luck, and have a great trip.

HTH.

2dogmom
04-10-2012, 03:02 PM
My primary reason for suggesting that you spend the night south of Atlanta would be because their rush-hour traffic can be almost as gruesome as it is out here in LA.

If you spent the night in Chattanooga, you'd have to be out of your hotel & on the road extremely early in order to beat Atlanta's traffic.

If you spent the night in one of those suburbs, you could rise at 6AM, be on the road by 7AM, & arrive at WDW in the early afternoon, depending on how long and where you had breakfast, and a potty break/snack shop stop between suburban Atlanta & WDW.

The 355/I80/I57 route has gotten more votes than the I65 route on this board from what I recall, but it's been pretty close.

HTH.

Thanks. I have heard the same about Atlanta. My Chattanooga stay will be on the return trip. Going there, I just want to get there and I want the shortest ride on arrival day.

Regardless of which route you choose, be sure to visit http://www.roomsaver.com and http://www.hotelcoupons.com to print some discount coupons; you may or may not be able to use them if you arrive in either Chattanooga, Atlanta, or anywhere else in both directions late at night, but just showing them to the desk clerk could save you a few bucks.

Good luck, and have a great trip.

HTH.

Thanks, I will check out those sites!

Bouncin-Tigger
04-11-2012, 09:20 AM
We drive 2-3 times a year and have taken many routes but 355 to 80 is way to go, not an exciting route but smoother with less truck traffic. I have gotten a ticket in the above mentioned georgia speed trap saw 4 cars, me being one of them pulled over in less than 1/4 mile. We drive straight thru which really isnt very difficult and I am the lone driver. Have 3 kids under 5 and few potty breaks along the way. Key for us is getting thru Atlanta, we leave at 4pm and roll thru around 2am and arrive in wdw around 11-12 ish and have been lucky to find our room ready most times. Just grab a few 5 hour energy drinks, some headphones and a playlist or 2 while everyone sleeps and have a back up map or iphone because on 2 trips had gps issues and 1 time road closed for fatal car accident so had to figure out a quick detour. Go for it and enjoy !

peppermintpea
04-11-2012, 01:49 PM
We drive 2-3 times a year and have taken many routes but 355 to 80 is way to go, not an exciting route but smoother with less truck traffic. I have gotten a ticket in the above mentioned georgia speed trap saw 4 cars, me being one of them pulled over in less than 1/4 mile. We drive straight thru which really isnt very difficult and I am the lone driver. Have 3 kids under 5 and few potty breaks along the way. Key for us is getting thru Atlanta, we leave at 4pm and roll thru around 2am and arrive in wdw around 11-12 ish and have been lucky to find our room ready most times. Just grab a few 5 hour energy drinks, some headphones and a playlist or 2 while everyone sleeps and have a back up map or iphone because on 2 trips had gps issues and 1 time road closed for fatal car accident so had to figure out a quick detour. Go for it and enjoy !

Great insight! I think we are leaving around 12 pm ... we have 5 adults in the car along with luggage so I dont think we will make great time with all that weight!:lmao: My mom also needs to take breaks....we are looking to be there by 10-11 am

Gumbo4x4
04-11-2012, 02:09 PM
If you spent the night in Chattanooga, you'd have to be out of your hotel & on the road extremely early in order to beat Atlanta's traffic.


That, or you sleep in a little, or mill about in Chattanooga, and get to Atlanta say 10 a.m. after the rush has cleared out??

Suzanne033
04-11-2012, 03:59 PM
http://image81.webshots.com/81/5/77/97/2526577970063361212rLLdFT_ph.jpg

Not sure if this is going to work but here is a spreadsheet I did regarding the time and distance btw different points along the way to Disney.

I took it to the next level by entering different departure times to see how it effected arrivals both outbound and inbound.

In case you are wondering, yes I was bored at work that day. :thumbsup2

2dogmom
04-12-2012, 09:09 AM
What a spreadsheet! Love it. It is something I would do ;)

irish dancer
04-12-2012, 08:25 PM
We are making the drive down in the beginning of June from Elmhurst. It will be the first time as a family. We have driven 2x to Hilton Head so I'm sure we'll survive. Who I'm most worried about is DH, he's not much of a road warrior. :rotfl:

We are going to take the 65 route, we live right off 294 and it has been good for us so far. My sisters have done the 57 route and say there is very little difference between the two. They warned me about the speed traps in GA, they loathe having to drive through that state because it's so long and with the traps it's just makes it worse.

Question on Atlanta traffic: is there an issue on Saturdays? We will probably be hitting there on Saturday both on the way down and back. Am hoping it's a No.

Thanks for the website links, will check them out. DSis did tell me there is a nice Fairfield Inn at exit 263 in GA past Atlanta.


Suzanne033 thanks for the spreadsheet! That is so like something I'd do. ;)

LadyBeBop
04-13-2012, 10:53 AM
Question on Atlanta traffic: is there an issue on Saturdays? We will probably be hitting there on Saturday both on the way down and back. Am hoping it's a No.



Shouldn't be, unless it's right before or right after an Atlanta Braves game.

Suzanne033
04-13-2012, 10:59 AM
Shouldn't be, unless it's right before or right after an Atlanta Braves game.

We went through Atlanta at about 4am on a Saturday morning on the way down and it was just fine. It was a completely different story coming back. We got to Atlanta at approx. 4pm (again on a Saturday) and it was a nightmare. It took us approx. 2 hours to get from abt 10 miles south of Atlanta to downtown. Believe it or not, once we got to the downtown area it cleared up considerably.

irish dancer
04-13-2012, 01:49 PM
Shouldn't be, unless it's right before or right after an Atlanta Braves game.

Thanks, just checked their schedule and they have an away game on our Saturday down but a home game at 4:05p on our Saturday home. Should we try to be out of the area long before the game or wait until later?

We went through Atlanta at about 4am on a Saturday morning on the way down and it was just fine. It was a completely different story coming back. We got to Atlanta at approx. 4pm (again on a Saturday) and it was a nightmare. It took us approx. 2 hours to get from abt 10 miles south of Atlanta to downtown. Believe it or not, once we got to the downtown area it cleared up considerably.

Ugh, that would so totally stink. The drive home is bad enough the last thing I want to do is sit in traffic for hours. Was this during baseball season? Could it have been from a baseball game?

Suzanne033
04-13-2012, 02:07 PM
Ugh, that would so totally stink. The drive home is bad enough the last thing I want to do is sit in traffic for hours. Was this during baseball season? Could it have been from a baseball game?

By the time we go to Turner Field the traffic was moving smoothly. The major issue was construction on I75. (Summer time is always bad for construction.)

HHSTigerFan
04-15-2012, 10:31 PM
Best way we have ever did it from the Joliet area is leaving at 2:00AM, by 7:00 we are into Kentucky and shortly there after stop for breakfast about 30miles south of Paducah, north of Atlanta for lunch and into the Gainesville or Ocala areas for dinner and hotel...

MrMarv
04-15-2012, 11:34 PM
That's pretty awesome as well; missing Atlanta traffic is the key in both directions.

Danibelle
04-16-2012, 10:24 AM
And the thing about GA speed traps is that there isn't a set fine like in IL - it could run in the hundreds. Also if you are 15 mph or more over there is an extra $200 tacked on by the state. Turner County uses Laser guns so a radar detector doesn't help.

That extra $200 is the Super Speeder law. If you are going over 75 on 2 lane roads, or over 85 on all other roads, you can incur the $200 plus the regular fine. They are enforcing this on 75 and also on 95.

2dogmom
04-17-2012, 09:30 AM
Best way we have ever did it from the Joliet area is leaving at 2:00AM, by 7:00 we are into Kentucky and shortly there after stop for breakfast about 30miles south of Paducah, north of Atlanta for lunch and into the Gainesville or Ocala areas for dinner and hotel...

Oh good, that was what I was planning on doing. It makes it sound doable!

smidgy
04-18-2012, 12:09 AM
coming from 45 miles NW of chicago (elgin area) sometimes we take 65, some times 57.


either way, when we approach Nashville, we always take the 155Briley parkway bypass. and, even tho the GOPS tells you to go on 40 for a bit, we don't. we stay on 155 briley parkway. yes, it becomes a state route for a mile or so, and has a couple stoplights, but it's less confusing. and so much less stressful then going through downtown nashville.

we always try to make it past atlanta the first day. through the city or the bypass??? we change our mind all the time on this one!

when we enter GA< we stop at the first rest stop and grab the room saver coupon books.

we usually end up staying at an AMerica's best Value, in Perry, ga.. you can walk to a burger king. we are just there long enough for a cocktail in the room, a walk to burger king, and sleep.

there are places, though on the macon (475?) bypass. if you don't make perry. or planty places in all those ittle towns in south GA along 75. watch the speed traps!!!!

smidgy
04-18-2012, 12:14 AM
My primary reason for suggesting that you spend the night south of Atlanta would be because their rush-hour traffic can be almost as gruesome as it is out here in LA.

If you spent the night in Chattanooga, you'd have to be out of your hotel & on the road extremely early in order to beat Atlanta's traffic.

If you spent the night in one of those suburbs, you could rise at 6AM, be on the road by 7AM, & arrive at WDW in the early afternoon, depending on how long and where you had breakfast, and a potty break/snack shop stop between suburban Atlanta & WDW.

The 355/I80/I57 route has gotten more votes than the I65 route on this board from what I recall, but it's been pretty close.

HTH.

this. hubby likes to get past atlanta, get as far south as possible the first day. the 2nd day, his back is aching, the kids are cranky (oh, yeah, we're empty nesters... the WIFE is cranky:rotfl: ) anyhoo, he likes to get to disney as soon as possible, check in, and get by that pool! so WHAT if the room isn't ready? we're in DISNEY!!!

Bouncin-Tigger
04-18-2012, 08:20 AM
I might be solo on this one but we just go straight thru, our theory is why waste 2 days when we can do it overnight and get more time at wdw. It might be lil boring at times but is not bad at all. We leave at 4pm and at resort by 11 or noon.

Gr8t Fan
04-18-2012, 10:42 AM
I might be solo on this one but we just go straight thru, our theory is why waste 2 days when we can do it overnight and get more time at wdw. It might be lil boring at times but is not bad at all. We leave at 4pm and at resort by 11 or noon.

We do the same thing. We used to stop overnight but it was so much work to get everyone up and ready the next day that we decided to skip it last trip and it worked out just fine.

LHARPSTER
04-18-2012, 03:16 PM
Im gonna keep my eye on this post. We are coming from Lake Geneva area here in WI and Im trying to find the best way too. Do you guys ever take bypasses around the major cities or stay on the main route?

peppermintpea
04-18-2012, 10:30 PM
I might be solo on this one but we just go straight thru, our theory is why waste 2 days when we can do it overnight and get more time at wdw. It might be lil boring at times but is not bad at all. We leave at 4pm and at resort by 11 or noon.

Nope...we are totally doing this on our June trip! no wasting good WDW time in a non WDW hotel! We will rotate drivers...stop for breaks and eats!

cruisingkat
04-19-2012, 12:07 AM
Im gonna keep my eye on this post. We are coming from Lake Geneva area here in WI and Im trying to find the best way too. Do you guys ever take bypasses around the major cities or stay on the main route?

The only bypass that we take is 475 around Macon. I75 veers east goes into Macon and then veers west again and adds extra miles- I475 goes straight down and rejoins I75 south of Macon.
We do not go around Atlanta - that adds on way too many miles and time and that road around is just as congested as I75 through Atlanta. If there are two or more people in the car, you can go in the HOV lane which usually moves a little better during rush hours.

theclarks53158
04-20-2012, 02:40 PM
So excited about this...we are coming from Kenosha, WI - and are planning to drive through this time. Last time we stopped around Atalanta but that was a pain. We are also planning on leaving Sat mid afternoon and reach Disney the next afternoon. Figure the kids would sleep for 12 hours of the drive overnight. There is no better feeling in the WORLD, then getting out of the car after that drive at your resort and hitting the pool! I too would like to fly but too much money! I hoping that the gas prices don't go sky high around labor day that when we are going. Thanks for everyone's advise. :beach:

BobbyBlueChip
05-17-2012, 11:09 PM
Thanks for all the info in this thread. We're leaving tomorrow mid-morning. For all the travelers with young ones, I found this place for our first stop south of Indianapolis. 2 miles off the expressway

It's a playground inside the Columbus Commons in Columbus, IN . I'd post a link, but it won't let me

smidgy
05-17-2012, 11:58 PM
Im gonna keep my eye on this post. We are coming from Lake Geneva area here in WI and Im trying to find the best way too. Do you guys ever take bypasses around the major cities or stay on the main route?

bypass chicago, take 53, to 355 to 80 to 57 (if going thru illinois) or 53 to 290 to 294 to 80 if going through indianan.

we lately have bee bypasing nashville. we like the 155 briley parkway. (whether you approach nashville from 24 (the illinois route ) OR 65 (the indiana route).

yes, you end up hitting a couple stop lights, but it is mostly an interstae, (you go past oprey land) and is much less "harried" then through downtown Nashville.

the atlanta bypass? we keep changing our minds about that one.. the one thing to remember, most of the truck HAVEW to take the bypass, so there are tons of trucks on it, as oppsed to going straight through.

of course, take 475 around macon, ga.

hearts8701
05-18-2012, 08:58 AM
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says southbound I-75 has been closed just across the Tennessee line because of a sinkhole that developed in northern Tennessee. The closure will force thousands of southbound travelers to take a 26 mile detour to get around the site
http://wkyufm.org/post/i-75-southbound-closed-near-ky-tn-border

LadyBeBop
05-18-2012, 09:32 AM
Thanks for all the info in this thread. We're leaving tomorrow mid-morning. For all the travelers with young ones, I found this place for our first stop south of Indianapolis. 2 miles off the expressway

It's a playground inside the Columbus Commons in Columbus, IN . I'd post a link, but it won't let me

Here we go.

http://www.thecommonscolumbus.com/thecommons/

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says southbound I-75 has been closed just across the Tennessee line because of a sinkhole that developed in northern Tennessee. The closure will force thousands of southbound travelers to take a 26 mile detour to get around the site
http://wkyufm.org/post/i-75-southbound-closed-near-ky-tn-border

That portion has been open and closed for the better part of two months now. Right now, it is closed (scheduled to reopen on Monday). Even when it's open, it's down to one lane both ways, so it could be backed up for miles. This is supposed to continue until August.

It affects me, since I come down from Cincinnati. However, for those coming from Chicago or Wisconsin, you'd probably be taking I-57 or 65. it should only affect you if you decide to go through Cincinnati.

SpecialK
05-19-2012, 11:33 AM
bypass chicago, take 53, to 355 to 80 to 57 (if going thru illinois) or 53 to 290 to 294 to 80 if going through indianan.


Why not take 355 to 80 to 65? Seems like it would be more direct and keep you away from 290 as well.

cruisingkat
05-19-2012, 02:47 PM
Only two weeks until our trip - but we won't be going directly to Disney. Our trip to Disney will be over 2000 miles down and over 1000 miles back as we have to go to Houston first for our grandson's graduation and eagle scout ceremony. Then on to Disney from there. Much more economical to combine the trips, we save one leg gas and hotel by doing a triangle trip.

peppermintpea
05-20-2012, 03:24 PM
2 weeks and have to start planning the route....355 to 80 to 65 to 75

i just downloaded my directions from mapquest and had it sent via text to my phone...Sweet!

hearts8701
05-20-2012, 04:11 PM
2 weeks and have to start planning the route....355 to 80 to 65 to 75

i just downloaded my directions from mapquest and had it sent via text to my phone...Sweet!

don't forget you have to take I24 to I75 than hit the turnpike

luvavacation
05-21-2012, 09:00 AM
Just a thought, but for those that live in the far Western Suburbs, my family likes taking route 47 south to 74 near Champaign, then taking that to Indianapolis where we pick up 65 and go south.

Yes, 47 can be filled with trucks, but the congestion lessens after Morris. We have been known to take the farm roads and then get on 47 closer to Morris. There isn't really much difference in time for us.

We have taken the 88 to 355 to 80 to 65 route, and find taking 47 works better for us. Invariably, until we are in "driving" mode, someone has to stop within the first two hours, and no one can time their bladders to all go at once. Just easier to stop when the gas station is right off the road. Also, gas prices are sooooo much cheaper in Dwight and other points south! I always use Gasbuddy to route our fill-ups!:)

There are two reasons we don't like taking 80 to 65. One, traffic congestion. We have been delayed two hours due to traffic problems near the IL/IN border.

Two, if you aren't paying attention, it is easy to miss the 65 exit, and instead find yourself in Michigan. :scared: Don't laugh, it has happened more than once. Invariably, I have been busy doing something, like grabbing food or a drink or dealing with unruly children, and DH misses the exit. He blames trucks blocking his view of the signs. Perhaps he should drive with more distance between trucks:scratchin, or pay attention when I tell him which exit number, but that discussion is for another time.

My DH has also missed the exit when driving on his own. Or perhaps Michigan is really calling him? Either way, we both prefer the less stressful start to a trip, so the 47 route south imparts less stress. And if there is a road blockage, the farm roads are easy bypasses, just take a good map.

Staying south of Atlanta is a great idea. We always drive straight through ATL, on advice of a friend that lives in that city. She says the bypass takes longer and has more delays. As long as you time Atlanta to avoid rush hour, the through route is fine. During rush hour, all routes are awful.

By the time we make it to the McDonough area of GA, we are ready to be done with driving and in the mood for a swim. We have also stayed in Macon and south of there, in Warner Robins. For my family, that was just way too much time driving. We like driving all over the country, but not too set an endurance record. We like it because we get to see things and enjoy each other's pleasant company. When we are all crabby from driving or sitting too much, there is no pleasant company.

Oh, I have a recommendation of a place to visit on the drive south (or north!). Lane Packing (http://www.lanepacking.com/ ), south of Atlanta on 75. It is about a 5 mile drive off the highway, but a great place to relax, run around, and eat some tasty fruit. We also stock up on other tasty treats. Just a suggestion if you are a family that likes the road trip to be a "trip", not just a "get there" thing. Some kids (and adults!) might just be too excited to see Disney to take time for any stops! :)

Safe travels!

Butterbunkins
05-21-2012, 09:20 AM
We live near Downers Grove and our best way to take is 355 to 80 to 57 to 24 to 75 to the turnpike. We always stop a few places on our way down so where we're going first ultimately dictates our route.

We mostly depart at night so when we have taken the 65 way through IN it hasnít been too bad. During the day though we canít stand it.

Our return trip we always stop overnight in Murfreesboro, TN and drive the above route in reverse. We avoid Indianapolis and one time we avoided 10 inches of snow in northern IN that didnít fall in IL.

I noticed one poster suggested taking 47 to Champaign. We have never taken this way since we donít live that far west, but friends of ours who live in Montgomery take this way all the time and swear by it for them.

Whichever way you take, try to avoid Atlanta during rush hour. It sucks! :sad:

cruisingkat
05-21-2012, 11:53 AM
We also live near Downers Grove and we used to take 47 to Champaign when we used to go visit my hubby's aunt. This was before 355 and we found it much faster to go southwest on 55 to 47 and then head down to Champaign. We picked up 47 at Dwight so there were very few towns to go through. It actually was faster than taking 294 to 57 and down. But now that 355 is open to 80, it is the only way to go as long as you live near 355.
We too drive straight though Atlanta staying in the HOV lane. On the way home, we hit Atlanta near the end of the evening rush hour - only twice have we had a problem getting through - once was a football conference championship game and the road was packed with lots of FL fans, and the other time there was a car fire that caused traffic to stop.

Mickeygolf
05-22-2012, 02:52 PM
I'm interested to hear more about the speed traps or whatever you want to call them in Georgia. In Iowa we can pretty much travel 10 miles over the limit on the interstates and not even get looked at by highway patrol. Is there a cushion limit over or are we talking no room whatsoever?

Also, arriving in Atlanta approximately between 5 and 7AM on a Saturday. So far from what I'm reading this shouldn't be too much of a problem. There's a game that night at 7:30, but I can't imagine that causing any problems.

Thanks for all the great tips on this thread. We're coming from Iowa but we hit the 64/24/75 route on the way down through Nashville and Atlanta.

luvavacation
05-23-2012, 09:21 AM
You can use this website to check for speedtraps - http://www.speedtrap.org/ . I do not know how reliable it is, but I know of people that believe it to be worthwhile.

I do not generally advocate speeding, but it is hard not to do when the road is straight, smooth, good weather, good music on the radio, interchanges are few and far between, and you are in driving mode. I have been known to drive 95 mph on the stretch in southern Georgian, northern FL. I was surprised when I realized this was happening, as I did not feel the speed. The continuous straight road can do that.

I also had a line of cars behind me, following right along. I suppose they felt I would get pulled over first! :rotfl: DH was amazed when he woke up from his nap and realized how far into FL we were at that point!

In my experience, maintaining a steady speed, not darting in and out of traffic (and if there is traffic, don't speed!), and not being the lone speeding car on the road (if you happen upon other cars that are driving in a manner you feel comfortable with, stay with them), will help you stay safe and make good time.

If you are going to speed, speed wisely, as my Dad used to say!

Mickeygolf
05-23-2012, 09:34 AM
That's a really cool site. Could make a person really paranoid if they took it too far:) Thanks for the link. I'd still like to know if there is any wiggle room at all or are you expected to be doing exactly the speed limit in those areas. Thanks for the help.

Butterbunkins
05-23-2012, 11:36 AM
If youíre worried about ďaccidentlyĒ speeding, use your cruise control. We use ours all the time. I always laugh when I have mine set and I go barreling past someone, then a few minutes later they come barreling past me, then a few minutes later itís me passing them again. With my cruise on I know I have maintained a constant speed, but their driving just goes to show how easy it is for your speed to fluctuate without cruise. My lead foot definitely gets less tickets with my trusty cruise! :teeth:

Mickeygolf
05-23-2012, 01:58 PM
I'm not worried about accidentally speeding, I just want to know what I can get away with:) I always use my cruise control for exactly what you're talking about. Hate it when you set it then some goofball gets in front of you slows down, you get past him then he's passing you up again. Just set it and forget it!!!

lugnut33
05-23-2012, 02:02 PM
This might sound insane, but the route we took during X-mas of 2010 allowed us to miss a giant snowstorm that closed down hwy24 near Chattanooga. It was also interesting to follow the road less traveled to FL.

We went down hwy57 all the way to hwy55 in SE Missouri. We then took hwy55 to to hwy78 in Memphis, which took us all the way to Birmingham where we spent the night. Next morning we got into a slightly snow covered car in Birmingham and took hwy65 south to Montgomery where we picked up hwy82 that took us southeast all the way to hwy75 in GA. Then down in to FL.

And it really didn't add that much time to the trip. We picked up a 5lb bag of pecans from a pecan farm in the middle of GA and they were amazing.

Dislvr1020
05-24-2012, 10:21 AM
This thread has been extremely helpful! Thanks so much everyone! We're making this trip end of June from the northern Chicago burbs and I had NO idea what to do. was just going to map quest it and go! :thumbsup2 Glad to read all these helpful hints. Planning on taking the 57 route through IL. Hope there's some decent rest stops on the way, since we'll have a 5 y.o and almost 2y.o who will NEED to run around and kick a ball at least once on this trip. HAHA. Planning on leaving around 4 am and heading down. Sounds like stopping around Macon, GA should be the way to go.

Butterbunkins
05-24-2012, 10:50 AM
This thread has been extremely helpful! Thanks so much everyone! We're making this trip end of June from the northern Chicago burbs and I had NO idea what to do. was just going to map quest it and go! :thumbsup2 Glad to read all these helpful hints. Planning on taking the 57 route through IL. Hope there's some decent rest stops on the way, since we'll have a 5 y.o and almost 2y.o who will NEED to run around and kick a ball at least once on this trip. HAHA. Planning on leaving around 4 am and heading down. Sounds like stopping around Macon, GA should be the way to go.

We donít stop at rest stops much. We try to make our bathrooms breaks and meal breaks when we stop for gas. But there is a really nice rest stop at Rend Lake. Itís just south of Mt Vernon, IL before you switch to I-27. There are rest stops on both sides, but the southbound one is much nicer. DH and I are usually making this trip in the dark, however the rare occasion we are driving during the day, we always stop.

Rend Lake is huge lake resort area and the rest stop is very nice. Itís a great spot to run around, take pictures and I think there is a playground but Iím not certain. Either way, if youíre looking for rest stops, this is the best one I can recommend! :thumbsup2

luvavacation
05-24-2012, 11:30 AM
Don't know why I didn't think of this earlier, but one advantage to driving I-65 in Indiana instead of 57 in IL is that the speed limit is higher in IN! I think it is only 5mph higher, but if you are someone that likes to go a bit over when conditions are safe and traffic is light, you can do that easier in IN, with less chance of a ticket.

For example, I believe that the limit in IL is 65 mph. If you normally go 75, you will only be 5 mph over limit in IN, where the limit is 70. Might make it more tolerable for those that like to go slightly faster, but aren't comfortable with 10mph faster.

Unless things have changed recently, but this is how it was when we drove the route last summer!

Suzanne033
05-24-2012, 11:36 AM
Don't know why I didn't think of this earlier, but one advantage to driving I-65 in Indiana instead of 57 in IL is that the speed limit is higher in IN! I think it is only 5mph higher, but if you are someone that likes to go a bit over when conditions are safe and traffic is light, you can do that easier in IN, with less chance of a ticket.

For example, I believe that the limit in IL is 65 mph. If you normally go 75, you will only be 5 mph over limit in IN, where the limit is 70. Might make it more tolerable for those that like to go slightly faster, but aren't comfortable with 10mph faster.

Unless things have changed recently, but this is how it was when we drove the route last summer!

That's the route we took last summer!! I love being able to cruise all the way to Indy without any stops. Even taking 65 through Indy isn't that big a hassle, same with Louisville.

Dislvr1020
05-24-2012, 05:10 PM
We donít stop at rest stops much. We try to make our bathrooms breaks and meal breaks when we stop for gas. But there is a really nice rest stop at Rend Lake. Itís just south of Mt Vernon, IL before you switch to I-27. There are rest stops on both sides, but the southbound one is much nicer. DH and I are usually making this trip in the dark, however the rare occasion we are driving during the day, we always stop.

Rend Lake is huge lake resort area and the rest stop is very nice. Itís a great spot to run around, take pictures and I think there is a playground but Iím not certain. Either way, if youíre looking for rest stops, this is the best one I can recommend! :thumbsup2

Thanks!!!! I'll add that to my Google Maps Interactive map ;)

Dislvr1020
05-24-2012, 06:33 PM
So for more fun, I've been playing with the interactive maps on Google. I noticed today that when you try to get driving directions from Northern burbs I get three options:
A: 65 through Indy
B: 65 but bypassing Indy
C: IL 24 which pretty much rides the border between IL and IN.

Nowhere does it mention taking 57 to 24...is this out of the way? I wonder why Mapquest nor Google is bringing this route up as an option?

SpecialK
05-24-2012, 10:47 PM
So for more fun, I've been playing with the interactive maps on Google. I noticed today that when you try to get driving directions from Northern burbs I get three options:
A: 65 through Indy
B: 65 but bypassing Indy
C: IL 24 which pretty much rides the border between IL and IN.

Nowhere does it mention taking 57 to 24...is this out of the way? I wonder why Mapquest nor Google is bringing this route up as an option?

They usually give the shortest route, and 65 is about 20-30 minutes less driving time than 57. That's what I'm assuming anyway.

droycro
05-28-2012, 04:46 PM
Subscribing. We'll be driving straight through in March 2013. Some great information here. Thanks!

patches07
06-01-2012, 02:55 PM
We'll be driving in November. Some great information here.
Thanks

kelleyrn2000
06-01-2012, 09:51 PM
subscribing...driving in about 8 weeks!

Debating whether to leave Thurs night or early Fri morning and time our drive from N. IL.... to avoid Atlanta traffic...especially on a Friday. With three kids and having my MIL following us in her vehicle it's going to be tough!

I think we may try to leave Thurs night, stay in Paducah, KY overnight since DH and I will have worked all day before heading out. Then leave early Friday morning to try to get to Atlanta by 3pm (4pm due to time zone change...oops). Then we would arrive in Orlando around midnight. Unless we get stuck in traffic. That makes me nervous!!

Or we may try to leave home early Friday morning instead...then we'd be hitting Atlanta late Friday night. Then we would stay somewhere south of Atlanta overnight. but we wouldn't arrive in Orlando until Saturday evening.

We have gotten stuck in Atlanta traffic once before, and it wasn't fun! I think 4pm is going to be congested already, right?

kelleyrn2000
06-01-2012, 10:01 PM
This is my first time driving since 1995. We normally fly, but with 5 of us, it gets expensive, plus I am getting married down there to I will be having SO MUCH more stuff that I would typically take. My kids are at least excited to be able to check more states off of their visited list ;)



Good point about the coupon books. I was also hoping there would be a lot of redboxes along the way, besides the stash I'm sure we will bring.

Great idea about the Redbox...thanks!!


We use the coupons books too. DH has even gone in to several places to bargain for a good rate late night and has done pretty good.

smidgy
06-02-2012, 02:26 AM
So for more fun, I've been playing with the interactive maps on Google. I noticed today that when you try to get driving directions from Northern burbs I get three options:
A: 65 through Indy
B: 65 but bypassing Indy
C: IL 24 which pretty much rides the border between IL and IN.

Nowhere does it mention taking 57 to 24...is this out of the way? I wonder why Mapquest nor Google is bringing this route up as an option?

57 is a bit out of the way, and kinda boring. we like it because you don't hit a city until nashville. you avoid louisville and indianapolis. we live 40 miles NW of chicago, so we basically avaoid chicago, too.

TheMorgans
06-02-2012, 07:03 PM
We donít stop at rest stops much. We try to make our bathrooms breaks and meal breaks when we stop for gas. But there is a really nice rest stop at Rend Lake. Itís just south of Mt Vernon, IL before you switch to I-27. There are rest stops on both sides, but the southbound one is much nicer. DH and I are usually making this trip in the dark, however the rare occasion we are driving during the day, we always stop.

Rend Lake is huge lake resort area and the rest stop is very nice. Itís a great spot to run around, take pictures and I think there is a playground but Iím not certain. Either way, if youíre looking for rest stops, this is the best one I can recommend! :thumbsup2


Since you are traveling in the next few weeks, if you can AVOID I-57 in this area. Road construction in this area is AWFUL!!!! The north and south bound lanes are both using the southboud lane and traffic is a BEAR almost every day. :sad2::sad2: Delays of 1-2 hours are common just to travel about 20 miles through the construction area. :headache: The detour takes you on a county highway and goes through multiple small towns which are speed traps. JUST SAYING....:rolleyes1

Dislvr1020
06-02-2012, 08:27 PM
Since you are traveling in the next few weeks, if you can AVOID I-57 in this area. Road construction in this area is AWFUL!!!! The north and south bound lanes are both using the southboud lane and traffic is a BEAR almost every day. :sad2::sad2: Delays of 1-2 hours are common just to travel about 20 miles through the construction area. :headache: The detour takes you on a county highway and goes through multiple small towns which are speed traps. JUST SAYING....:rolleyes1

Thanks for the heads up!!! My DH was wanting to take 65 through Indiana anyway when we leave in about 3 weeks, so I supposed this is one more reason to lean that way. Though that's a bummer b/c I was looking forward to an awesome rest stop ;)

SpecialK
06-02-2012, 09:53 PM
Since you are traveling in the next few weeks, if you can AVOID I-57 in this area. Road construction in this area is AWFUL!!!! The north and south bound lanes are both using the southboud lane and traffic is a BEAR almost every day. :sad2::sad2: Delays of 1-2 hours are common just to travel about 20 miles through the construction area. :headache: The detour takes you on a county highway and goes through multiple small towns which are speed traps. JUST SAYING....:rolleyes1

I am SO glad I checked back on this thread. We leave next week, and as much as I hate 65, I hate being stopped in traffic more. Many thanks!

Poohbug
06-03-2012, 12:14 PM
Leaving in a few days and I was going to take I57 to I24. I guess I could take I74 over to I65 and then to I24 to miss the construction. I will have to go through Indianapolis and Louisville and I wonder if dealing with the traffic in two cities will be worse than dealing with the construction delays. Any advice? I have been to Indy before but never to Louisville.

SpecialK
06-03-2012, 02:36 PM
Leaving in a few days and I was going to take I57 to I24. I guess I could take I74 over to I65 and then to I24 to miss the construction. I will have to go through Indianapolis and Louisville and I wonder if dealing with the traffic in two cities will be worse than dealing with the construction delays. Any advice? I have been to Indy before but never to Louisville.

We're coming from he south suburbs of Chicago, close to 57, and taking the 57-74-65-24 route adds about an hour to our drive time. You might be better off just shooting over 80 to 65, assuming you're coming down 355.

We've driven a few times and the only city I remember dealing with traffic etc. was Atlanta.

Gr8t Fan
06-03-2012, 04:47 PM
Since you are traveling in the next few weeks, if you can AVOID I-57 in this area. Road construction in this area is AWFUL!!!! The north and south bound lanes are both using the southboud lane and traffic is a BEAR almost every day. :sad2::sad2: Delays of 1-2 hours are common just to travel about 20 miles through the construction area. :headache: The detour takes you on a county highway and goes through multiple small towns which are speed traps. JUST SAYING....:rolleyes1

Thanks for the heads up. We were waffling back and forth between 57 or 65, but think that this seals the deal for us too. Do you know how long construction on 57 is expected to last? TIA for any information.

peppermintpea
06-04-2012, 11:37 AM
Ugh we are driving now and our gps told us to go way of nc sc ga....I'm not sure how much time we lost having not gone through atl. I75 was detoured in tn for about 45 min through the mts....
We are almost to jacksonville....I do say the smoky mts were beautiful

kelleyrn2000
06-04-2012, 02:10 PM
I think I have our timing figured out for our trip end of July...let's hope construction doesn't put a huge kink in our plan...

Using Mapquest travel time estimates...with any luck we will make better time though :)

Arrive in Paducah, KY by midnight and stay overnight.
Leave Paducah by 6am, stop for lunch in Chatanooga area, then make it to to Atlanta by 2pm. Braves have a 7:30 home game that night (Friday) so hopefully we will be through that area in plenty of time to miss rush hour and game taffic.
We'll stay overnight in Valdosta most likely before we head to Orlando in AM. Unless of course we are making better time than thought!


Does anyone know a good site to check road construction online for the various interstates?? TIA!!!

SpecialK
06-04-2012, 02:30 PM
Ugh we are driving now and our gps told us to go way of nc sc ga....I'm not sure how much time we lost having not gone through atl. I75 was detoured in tn for about 45 min through the mts....
We are almost to jacksonville....I do say the smoky mts were beautiful

Do you remember where in TN you were detoured? We're leaving in a few days and I'm rethinking our route. ****Nevermind, I just looked it up. Lots of construction in TN.


I think I have our timing figured out for our trip end of July...let's hope construction doesn't put a huge kink in our plan...

Using Mapquest travel time estimates...with any luck we will make better time though :)

Arrive in Paducah, KY by midnight and stay overnight.
Leave Paducah by 6am, stop for lunch in Chatanooga area, then make it to to Atlanta by 2pm. Braves have a 7:30 home game that night (Friday) so hopefully we will be through that area in plenty of time to miss rush hour and game taffic.
We'll stay overnight in Valdosta most likely before we head to Orlando in AM. Unless of course we are making better time than thought!


Does anyone know a good site to check road construction online for the various interstates?? TIA!!!


Just google the Dept. of Transportation for the state you're interested in and you should find a link to construction info.

LadyBeBop
06-04-2012, 02:51 PM
Do you remember where in TN you were detoured? We're leaving in a few days and I'm rethinking our route. ****Nevermind, I just looked it up. Lots of construction in TN.

I may understand her GPS taking her off I-75 in Corbin, KY (taking US 25E through the mountains and ending up in Eastern Tenn, close to North Carolina). That avoids the landslide and does not add too much time. But it sounds like her GPS might have taken her off I-75 in Knoxville. That's beyond the landslide, and that would actually add time.

PM me if anyone wants an alternative route around the I-75 landslide in Northern Tenn.

peppermintpea
06-11-2012, 02:45 PM
Well we are back and in one piece from driving... couple of thoughts
~never driving straight through again...way too difficult for me and my hub
~not relying on my GPS from my car...took us the wrong way down
~lots of construction on the roads
~saw lots of cops


Had loads of fun even if it was rainy...Safe trips to all!
Til next year...TTFN!

irish dancer
06-11-2012, 11:18 PM
We too are just home from our road trip. Our thoughts:

We did the 57-24-75 route to avoid the construction in Louisville, down to 1 lane. There was construction along 57 but there didn't seem to be any issues/traffic from it. It could be that we were doing all our traveling Sat/Sun.

Left western suburbs of Chicago Sat 6/2 at 7:30am. The only issue we had was 24 was closed through downtown Nashville for the weekend so there was a bit of a back-up and detour but I don't think it impacted things too much. We stayed the night in Macon, GA at a Best Western. Got a GREAT rate through Costco, $65ish for a 2bd w/pull-out sofa and breakfast.

Left Disney Sat 6/9 at 1:30p, hit some very heavy rain about 1hr north that lasted quite a while and slowed things down. We stopped for the night in Dalton, GA just south of Chattanooga at a Country Inn & Suites. It was clean but older. We got a later start on Sunday leaving around 10a. Had no problems on the way back through Nashville. There was a sign on 57 about a 4mi back-up starting at MM88 so we hopped off and took SR 37 from south of Mt. Vernon to just north of it. Was a nice drive, speed limit for most of it was 55 and there was no one on it so we sailed right through with no problems. There was more construction in Effingham and again around Kankakee, traffic was heavier but no slow downs or stops.

It was a long drive but all went well. If airline prices continue as they are I'm guessing our road trips will become more of the norm as it wasn't too terrible. I agree about the cops, there were many but cruise control can be your friend. ;) The other big thing I noticed was the huge difference in gas prices once you leave IL. On our way back we saw $2.98 in Paducah and $3.05 in Chattanooga but the norm was more like low $3.20s. It was quite a shock to come home to nearly $4 again.

Best of luck to those with trips this summer.

Butterbunkins
06-12-2012, 08:24 AM
We too are just home from our road trip. Our thoughts:

We did the 57-24-75 route to avoid the construction in Louisville, down to 1 lane. There was construction along 57 but there didn't seem to be any issues/traffic from it. It could be that we were doing all our traveling Sat/Sun.

Left western suburbs of Chicago Sat 6/2 at 7:30am. The only issue we had was 24 was closed through downtown Nashville for the weekend so there was a bit of a back-up and detour but I don't think it impacted things too much. We stayed the night in Macon, GA at a Best Western. Got a GREAT rate through Costco, $65ish for a 2bd w/pull-out sofa and breakfast.

Left Disney Sat 6/9 at 1:30p, hit some very heavy rain about 1hr north that lasted quite a while and slowed things down. We stopped for the night in Dalton, GA just south of Chattanooga at a Country Inn & Suites. It was clean but older. We got a later start on Sunday leaving around 10a. Had no problems on the way back through Nashville. There was a sign on 57 about a 4mi back-up starting at MM88 so we hopped off and took SR 37 from south of Mt. Vernon to just north of it. Was a nice drive, speed limit for most of it was 55 and there was no one on it so we sailed right through with no problems. There was more construction in Effingham and again around Kankakee, traffic was heavier but no slow downs or stops.

It was a long drive but all went well. If airline prices continue as they are I'm guessing our road trips will become more of the norm as it wasn't too terrible. I agree about the cops, there were many but cruise control can be your friend. ;) The other big thing I noticed was the huge difference in gas prices once you leave IL. On our way back we saw $2.98 in Paducah and $3.05 in Chattanooga but the norm was more like low $3.20s. It was quite a shock to come home to nearly $4 again.

Best of luck to those with trips this summer.

Glad you had a good, safe drive. I can tell you from our many trips to So. IL traffic always gets heavy through Kankakee and Effingham so it sounds like you got lucky with construction all and all! Hope the whole vacation was wonderful! :goodvibes

2dogmom
06-12-2012, 09:36 AM
Left western suburbs of Chicago Sat 6/2 at 7:30am. The only issue we had was 24 was closed through downtown Nashville for the weekend so there was a bit of a back-up and detour but I don't think it impacted things too much. We stayed the night in Macon, GA at a Best Western. Got a GREAT rate through Costco, $65ish for a 2bd w/pull-out sofa and breakfast.


What time did you arrive in Macon?

Suzanne033
06-12-2012, 10:13 AM
Left western suburbs of Chicago Sat 6/2 at 7:30am. The only issue we had was 24 was closed through downtown Nashville for the weekend so there was a bit of a back-up and detour but I don't think it impacted things too much. We stayed the night in Macon, GA at a Best Western. Got a GREAT rate through Costco, $65ish for a 2bd w/pull-out sofa and breakfast.

Thanks for the info. I am taking a similar route and we are also staying at the Best Western in Macon, GA this Friday night.

A couple questions though: What time did you leave Macon in the morning? What time did you arrive in Orlando??

irish dancer
06-13-2012, 12:47 PM
What time did you arrive in Macon?

We got to Macon around 10-10:30p local time. We did have one unplanned long stop for dinner just north of Chattanooga. We stopped at a Long John Silver/A&W, we decided to get out of the car and go in because we were sick of sitting. It took FOREVER!! I think they cooked every order individually and it was pretty busy. It was good we got hot fresh food but I didn't plan to stop for so long.

Thanks for the info. I am taking a similar route and we are also staying at the Best Western in Macon, GA this Friday night.

A couple questions though: What time did you leave Macon in the morning? What time did you arrive in Orlando??

We left Macon around 8-8:30a and got to our off-site hotel between 2-3p. We did stop off at Ellis' for some pecan snacks but it was a quick stop and a drive-thru lunch at Steak & Shake.


One other note: if you like BBQ we stopped at a great place in Valdosta called Smokin' Pig. It was delicious! They also have a restaurant in Macon.

Mommygraham
06-13-2012, 04:54 PM
We drove last May and took the I94 to I65 to I24 to I75 to US27 to US192 route as well. We were coming from the western suburbs of Chicago. We left our house at 6:00 a.m., and stopped at 9:00 p.m. in Byron, Georgia. There was a Holiday Inn Express, McDonald's, and several gas stations. The hotel was clean and worked just fine. The next day we had a 5 hour drive to Disney. On the way home, we left Disney at 9:00 a.m. and made it all the way to Jacksonville, KY by about 9:00 p.m. that night (We originally planned to stop just out of Nashville but everyone was fine so we kept on going). We stayed at a Hampton Inn (which was great, by the way).. We left in the a.m. at 8:00 a.m. We pulled into our driveway at 2:00 p.m. Keep in mind, we had a one year old and a 3 year old and a 9 year old, so we made many stops for diaper changes, food/snacks, etc.. I think it was really great to get the most of the driving out the way the first day. We will be flying when we go this fall, but will be happy to drive again on our next trip. I agree with you. It was exciting for the kids to see the different states, etc.

Mickey'sApprentice
06-14-2012, 02:02 AM
You could take I65 all the way to Montgomery, Alabama. You would then take US 231 to Marianna Florida, and I-10 to I75 at Lake City, FL. You then take I75 to the Turnpike. You know the rest.

As for Houston to Orlando...take I10 to I75.

We would love for you to visit Alabama, and spend money. Plus, you don't have to worry about Atlanta traffic!!

DisDadMatt
06-19-2012, 04:40 PM
We'll be driving in November. Some great information here.
Thanks

We are from the same area and are driving down in November too.

We did the 57 route before but thinking about 65 this time.

2dogmom
06-19-2012, 06:21 PM
We are enroute now. We left Oswego, IL at 3:15 this morning, taking 47 down. We were making good time until we hit Atlanta. Tragic is horrible on I285. Ok, a truck was broken down judi now so hopefully we can start moving. It looks like McDonough will be our stop tonight.

Sunnywho
06-19-2012, 06:30 PM
Thanks for all the info in this thread. We're leaving tomorrow mid-morning. For all the travelers with young ones, I found this place for our first stop south of Indianapolis. 2 miles off the expressway

It's a playground inside the Columbus Commons in Columbus, IN . I'd post a link, but it won't let me
great tip, thanks, we've added this to our itinerary

edited to add: here's a link that shows pictures of the playground, with a big climbing "tree" http://www.kid-at-art.com/htdoc/pground.html

DisDadMatt
06-19-2012, 10:19 PM
You could take I65 all the way to Montgomery, Alabama. You would then take US 231 to Marianna Florida, and I-10 to I75 at Lake City, FL. You then take I75 to the Turnpike. You know the rest.

As for Houston to Orlando...take I10 to I75.

We would love for you to visit Alabama, and spend money. Plus, you don't have to worry about Atlanta traffic!!

I was always curious about Alabama route but it seems as it would take longer... May have to wait until kids are older.

SpecialK
06-19-2012, 11:44 PM
You could take I65 all the way to Montgomery, Alabama. You would then take US 231 to Marianna Florida, and I-10 to I75 at Lake City, FL. You then take I75 to the Turnpike. You know the rest.

As for Houston to Orlando...take I10 to I75.

We would love for you to visit Alabama, and spend money. Plus, you don't have to worry about Atlanta traffic!!

We just got home tonight after driving the 75 to 82 to 65 route through Alabama and it was much longer. Alabama had some beautiful scenery but never again.

We've also tried the 231-10-75 route and it also seemed endless. I'd rather deal with Atlanta.

Poohbug
06-20-2012, 09:48 AM
Just back from our road trip. Construction on I57 was not bad at all but we went through around noon. I'm sure it gets worse during high traffic times.

Stayed at a very nice hotel in McDonough, GA (just south of Atlanta). Huge room with a pull out couch. Very clean and great if you have a family of five or six. $81.00/night - Comfort Suites, exit 218

Went right through Atlanta around 9 pm and it was still pretty busy, but no slow downs or stops.

There are a couple of lane closures in IL on I74 (between Indiana and Bloominton, IL) but they kept moving and were not too bad.

Gas is much cheaper once you get past IL and IN area. Disney was $3.24 per gallon! By the time we got home we drove though 8 states and I figure I paid right around $250 in gas. Even with the cost of hotel stays much cheaper than the $300+ per person to fly.

Mickey'sApprentice
06-21-2012, 01:54 AM
We just got home tonight after driving the 75 to 82 to 65 route through Alabama and it was much longer. Alabama had some beautiful scenery but never again.

We've also tried the 231-10-75 route and it also seemed endless. I'd rather deal with Atlanta.

I'm glad you saw the beauty of my state!

WI_DisneyFan
06-21-2012, 01:19 PM
Just back from our road trip. Construction on I57 was not bad at all but we went through around noon. I'm sure it gets worse during high traffic times.

Stayed at a very nice hotel in McDonough, GA (just south of Atlanta). Huge room with a pull out couch. Very clean and great if you have a family of five or six. $81.00/night - Comfort Suites, exit 218

Went right through Atlanta around 9 pm and it was still pretty busy, but no slow downs or stops.

There are a couple of lane closures in IL on I74 (between Indiana and Bloominton, IL) but they kept moving and were not too bad.
Thanks for the update! We'll be making the drive, also from Wisconsin, in 79 days. I see you went through Atlanta around 9 pm. What time did you leave home?

Poohbug
06-22-2012, 10:07 AM
Thanks for the update! We'll be making the drive, also from Wisconsin, in 79 days. I see you went through Atlanta around 9 pm. What time did you leave home?

I left around 7:30 a.m. We only live about 35 miles from the IL border. We only stopped for gas/bathrooms and maybe half an hour for supper.

IllinoisMommy
06-22-2012, 01:11 PM
Poohbug- thanks for the info! Good to know gas was not so bad, and thanks for the tip on the hotel near Atlanta. I am going to write that down for our December trip- always good to know rooms that accommodate five people without breaking the bank (I will save that for Disney :rotfl2:)

IllinoisMommy
06-22-2012, 01:14 PM
You could take I65 all the way to Montgomery, Alabama. You would then take US 231 to Marianna Florida, and I-10 to I75 at Lake City, FL. You then take I75 to the Turnpike. You know the rest.

As for Houston to Orlando...take I10 to I75.

We would love for you to visit Alabama, and spend money. Plus, you don't have to worry about Atlanta traffic!!

Spend last summer in Alabama (Gulf Shores area)- drove down and loved it! After you all get your Disney fix- take your families on a real beach vacation in Alabama :thumbsup2

irish dancer
06-22-2012, 03:20 PM
Poohbug- thanks for the info! Good to know gas was not so bad, and thanks for the tip on the hotel near Atlanta. I am going to write that down for our December trip- always good to know rooms that accommodate five people without breaking the bank (I will save that for Disney :rotfl2:)

We too stayed at a good hotel, Best Western in Macon, GA with 2beds and a pull out couch, breakfast in the am and it was clean. Got a great rate through Costco ($65.xx).

cruisingkat
06-22-2012, 10:04 PM
Getting ready for our second Disney visit for this trip that started in May. Only this time we drive up from Ft. Myers, FL - only about 2 and a half hours. The drive from Chicago to Houston was wonderful - great weather and cheap gas in Arkansas. Houston to Disney was great until we stopped for fireworks near the AL/FL border. Rained all the way to our stop for the night in Quincy, FL. We also missed the drive thru daquiri bar of an exit in LA. Next morning had drizzles off and on until we got to Disney. We usually go to Disney the first or second week of June and have had the usual afternoon rainshower to empty out the parks. However, this trip we had rain all day- every day. Spend 5 days at Disney and then on to Ft. Myers for 2 weeks. Now back up to Disney for 5 more days and then home.
Planning trips back to Disney in Oct., Nov, and Dec. Nov. trip will include another visit to Houston.

2dogmom
06-30-2012, 10:01 PM
We are back from the drive and it went well. We left Oswego, IL at 3:15am and ran into rush hour in Atlanta. Not fun. Otherwise, construction wasn't bad and the ride was pretty uneventful.

MrMarv
06-30-2012, 11:35 PM
http://www.gasbuddy.com is a terrific website to keep track of the difference in gas prices from state to state; it's great for helping you plan your gas/meal breaks along the way before you leave home.

Right now the difference between Chicago & Nashville gas prices is $.60/gallon and it's currently under $3.00/gallon near WDW.

HTH.

For hotels, http://www.I95exitguide.com is another great website.

droycro
07-01-2012, 10:35 AM
We are back from the drive and it went well. We left Oswego, IL at 3:15am and ran into rush hour in Atlanta. Not fun. Otherwise, construction wasn't bad and the ride was pretty uneventful.

Did you drive straight through or did you stop? We're making this drive next spring and deciding what time to leave.

Butterbunkins
07-01-2012, 04:40 PM
http://www.gasbuddy.com is a terrific website to keep track of the difference in gas prices from state to state; it's great for helping you plan your gas/meal breaks along the way before you leave home.

Right now the difference between Chicago & Nashville gas prices is $.60/gallon and it's currently under $3.00/gallon near WDW.

HTH.

For hotels, http://www.I95exitguide.com is another great website.

Lower gas prices = one of the best things about leaving the Chicago area! :thumbsup2

2dogmom
07-01-2012, 09:50 PM
Did you drive straight through or did you stop? We're making this drive next spring and deciding what time to leave.

We drove to just south of Atlanta and had about 6 hours the next day to wdw.

cruisingkat
07-02-2012, 10:06 AM
Just back from our trip. We had to take 65 up as we had to stop in IN to pick up some things for our daughter and son-in-law.
I would advise not taking I65 through Louisville. They are working on the bridges and 3 lanes merge into one. Traffic was at a standstill - even on a Sunday. Also, I24 is closed both directions in Nashville for a stretch from Fri. 9pm to Mon. 5am. Traffic is rerouted along I40/I65 and traffic was awful as there were only two lanes open.

patches07
07-31-2012, 12:47 PM
We are from the same area and are driving down in November too.

We did the 57 route before but thinking about 65 this time.

We are leaving November 1st at 3am.

Butterbunkins
08-01-2012, 09:35 AM
We are leaving November 1st at 3am.

Please come back and update the roads (construction, etc.) We're leaving 11/8 but camping, visiting family on our way down so not arriving until later on 11/11.

Gr8t Fan
08-01-2012, 12:01 PM
We are driving the 57/24/75 route from Chicago and leaving on 8/17 after work!!! I'll update when we get back.

We took 65 last trip and it was fine, but all of the construction talk made us change our minds.

droycro
08-01-2012, 01:49 PM
We are leaving November 1st at 3am.

Are you driving straight through?

patches07
08-02-2012, 10:31 AM
Are you driving straight through?

We are stopping for the night in Macon GA.

mama23babies
10-10-2012, 02:46 PM
Any driving updates? We are leaving from Chicago suburbs (south) on Nov, 9th. I'm looking for tips, places to stay for the night?


Thanks!

Debbie

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards

Butterbunkins
10-11-2012, 08:07 AM
Any driving updates? We are leaving from Chicago suburbs (south) on Nov, 9th. I'm looking for tips, places to stay for the night?


Thanks!

Debbie

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards

We are leaving the evening of 11/8 but making a few stops on our way down (our favorite camping spot in Southern IL and with family in Knoxville, TN) and will be arriving 11/11.

I'm not sure what time of the day you're leaving, but if you are looking to just stop overnight somewhere I would suggest trying to get past Atlanta before stopping. On the way home we always stay at the Best Western in Murfreesboro, TN. Its just south of Nashville and is more than half way home.

Suzanne033
10-11-2012, 09:08 AM
I'm looking for tips, places to stay for the night?

Thanks!

Debbie

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards

I don't live far from you. My DD13 and I drove down in June. We left Northwest Indiana at 6:30am and were in Macon, Georgia by 7:00pm. I got a great pre-paid rate on Hotels.com at a Best Western that had free breakfast right off 275.

The second day we left Macon approx. 8:00am and were in Disney by 2:00pm.

In all honestly, even though I was the only driver, if I didn't already have a pre-paid reservation at that particular Best Western I would have kept going and easily made it to Valdosta by 9pm.

mama23babies
10-11-2012, 10:47 PM
Thanks! Everyone I have heard from has said to get past Atlanta the first day. That's the plan. We have three drivers, so that should help. I'd love to go straight through, but I don't know how the kids will make it. I just want a decent place to stay if we need to.

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards

jimbostacks
12-04-2012, 06:48 AM
Lots of great info here. We are planning on doing Mammoth Cave for a few hours on the way and I do not think I can make it past ATlanta. Any good hotel recommendations in Kennesaw GA? Ithought I saw an Embassy Suites for $100 which sounds cheap with the large breakfast they serve.

luvavacation
12-04-2012, 08:21 AM
Just popping in, with a little update on the drive from far western Chicago area to almost Orlando (went to Jacksonville) over Thanksgiving.

We picked up my daughter at Purdue, and took 88 to 355 to 80 to 57, then got off in Ashkum to take side roads to my daughter's apartment. It is faster than taking 80 to 65 on a Friday during rush hour (we left the house at 4 on Friday before Thanksgiving).

The roads had more cars on them than we have ever seen, especially on the way home the Saturday and Sunday after Thanksgiving! I do like that the speed limit on the Indiana route is higher than the IL route, so at least everyone was going at a good pace.

There was some construction, but it didn't really create many back-ups. I always carry good maps, and have the settings for the local radio station, so if the highway is backed up, we can get off and take alternate roads to bypass the stopped traffic. Didn't have to do that this time.

The worst traffic was into and out of Atlanta, both ways. It started maybe an hour from Atlanta, and continued for an hour out of Atlanta. No discernible reason why, it just was. HOV lane, once you got to it, was also backed up. We were barely moving. I realize Chicago drivers have their issues, and we rarely ever drive into Chicago from the boonies where we live, but I really do believe the drivers in Atlanta are even worse! At least in Chicago, we are all in a hurry - in Atlanta, you have your hurry-up drivers (must be transplanted Northerners ;) ) and your easygoing Southern drivers. The two do not mix well, especially on Thanksgiving weekend when all the IL, IN, WI and MI plated vehicles are trying to get home! Fun times!

We were very disappointed that our favorite place to stop coming out of the mountains of Tennessee, Nickajack Lake rest stop, was closed. We always stop here to make sandwiches and stretch our legs, it is just so pretty. Hopefully it will be open before we do the drive again this summer. The return trip side was open, but it was dark when we got there, so we kept going.

If anyone is interested, we also found our new favorite hotel, the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro. If you are a Hilton Honours member, you can use points, otherwise I believe it is around $150 a night, at least it was for Thanksgiving weekend. I felt it was well worth it. We traveled with one teen daughter and one adult daughter (and Grandma in the connecting room), and there was plenty of room, and the beds were AMAZING! Breakfast was tasty, and the manager's reception until 7:30 p.m. was a nice touch. Nice pool, warm but not scalding hot tub, it was all good. And the friendliest employees!

Normally we stay with Marriott points at the Residence Inn off Briley in Nashville, but when you factor in the drive around Nashville to get there, staying more south in Murfreesboro was almost a wash in terms of drive time home. I know there are lesser expensive hotels to stay in, but staying in hotels when we drive is part of my vacation, so I like them to be nicer hotels with fantastic breakfasts included. We are very frugal all year long, so we live it up on vacation. And using my credit card for everything to attain points, then paying it off each month, it all balances out. Looks like I will be using my Hilton AmEx from now on, not my Marriott, to make another visit to the Murfreesboro Embassy Suites!

Hope everyone has safe and pleasant drives over the coming winter!

BethanyF
12-19-2012, 09:28 AM
:drive:
we are leaving this Friday at about 1:30pm and driving straight through. 2 drivers and a 14 year old.
I'm debating between 65 and 57 since our departure time is going to put us in Indianapolis at rush hour. Or is that not really a problem?

The plan is for DH to drive out of Chicago and then I can take over for a couple hours. Then we will rotate as needed. DH prefers driving to being a passenger, so I don't really drive too much. I usually end up doing a few hours in Georgia since that is about when he hits his 'wall' and needs a break.

I used to pack all kinds of food & drinks, but found we don't really use what I pack. Plus the few minutes to stretch is a welcome break. So we stop as needed, get reenergized and keep going.

Driving at this time of year is new to us, we usually go down at spring break. I'm not looking forward to the shortened daylight hours. I have my Kindle for books & movies, but I prefer paging through my stack of unread magazines. I read them and then leave them at rest stops with a 'help yourself' sticker for others to read on their trips.

I know this can be touchy, but does anyone know what cigarette prices are along the way? They are expensive here, so if I know where to find them cheap along the way I can plan accordingly.

Samish
12-19-2012, 02:54 PM
We are driving this weekend too! Leaving approx 12 hours after you (kids have school on Friday). We are driving a bit East though. Stopping over to see family in Charlotte and staying there for the night. Hopefully planning to reach WDW on Sunday night :)

Sorry can't help with the cigarette prices.

droycro
12-19-2012, 05:22 PM
BethanyF I see you're leaving around 1:30pm. We are heading down over spring break. We had thought about leaving at 2pm, and we are planning to drive straight through. What can you tell me about approximately what time we'll arrive at The World? We do plan on taking 57. Only slightly longer, but much less traffic to worry about.

BethanyF
12-19-2012, 05:36 PM
BethanyF I see you're leaving around 1:30pm. We are heading down over spring break. We had thought about leaving at 2pm, and we are planning to drive straight through. What can you tell me about approximately what time we'll arrive at The World? We do plan on taking 57. Only slightly longer, but much less traffic to worry about.

Last March we left at about 3:00 and pulled in to SSR at about noon.
(had to go look at my FB pics to see the time stamps, LOL)

We stopped a few times, a couple longer (Waffle House) stops and several coffee/potty breaks. Never more than 30 or 45 minutes

droycro
12-19-2012, 07:08 PM
Last March we left at about 3:00 and pulled in to SSR at about noon.
(had to go look at my FB pics to see the time stamps, LOL)

We stopped a few times, a couple longer (Waffle House) stops and several coffee/potty breaks. Never more than 30 or 45 minutes

Thanks! Enjoy your upcoming trip:)

smidgy
12-19-2012, 07:55 PM
:drive:
we are leaving this Friday at about 1:30pm and driving straight through. 2 drivers and a 14 year old.
I'm debating between 65 and 57 since our departure time is going to put us in Indianapolis at rush hour. Or is that not really a problem?

The plan is for DH to drive out of Chicago and then I can take over for a couple hours. Then we will rotate as needed. DH prefers driving to being a passenger, so I don't really drive too much. I usually end up doing a few hours in Georgia since that is about when he hits his 'wall' and needs a break.

I used to pack all kinds of food & drinks, but found we don't really use what I pack. Plus the few minutes to stretch is a welcome break. So we stop as needed, get reenergized and keep going.

Driving at this time of year is new to us, we usually go down at spring break. I'm not looking forward to the shortened daylight hours. I have my Kindle for books & movies, but I prefer paging through my stack of unread magazines. I read them and then leave them at rest stops with a 'help yourself' sticker for others to read on their trips.

I know this can be touchy, but does anyone know what cigarette prices are along the way? They are expensive here, so if I know where to find them cheap along the way I can plan accordingly.

we prefer 57, but we are coming from carpentersville, and take 53 south to 355 to 80 to 57. the other way, we take 53 to 290 to 294 t0 80 east to 65.

we take the briley parkway around nashvilee and don't really hit a city until chatanooga when we take 57. but the bypass around indainapolis isn't bad,

it is not "touchy" that you smoke, we used to ourselves. cigs are cheaper in kentucky, safe travels!!!

BethanyF
12-19-2012, 08:33 PM
We are starting from Schaumburg

I'm thinking 57 might be the way to go to avoid Indianapolis (and those scary looking giant windmills, LOL)

smidgy
12-19-2012, 09:31 PM
Illinois has a lower speed limit than Indiana. and 57 can be boring. other thatn that, we love it. stay on 53 to 355. it's really nice. you are only on 80for a very short time. when you get to nashville, take the 155 briley parkway (it will turn into a regular road with a couple stop lights, for just for a while. )

you will not actually go through a city until chatanooga.

ps. we have tried so many ways to avoid atlanta. we ahve stayed on 65 into alabama, and taken a few routes. I guess it's just better to suck it up.

we do prefer the bypass. frineds of ours swear by going straight through, and using the car pool lane. (I despise atlanta:rotfl:)

BethanyF
12-19-2012, 09:54 PM
we usually plan it so we are going through Atlanta in the middle of the night or on a weekend day.

I used to have a friend that lived just outside Atlanta, so learned really quickly to avoid rush hour.

I'm starting to get anxious to get moving. DS arranged to take Friday's algebra final tomorrow, so there is a really good chance he won't be going to school on Friday. Or, if he does, we will pick him up before lunch since he only has study hall and algebra after lunch.

We still won't be on the road until noon or so since we have to take the dog to the kennel and have a couple other quick errands to run.

Is it Friday yet?

smidgy
12-19-2012, 10:19 PM
we can't drive at night, so we are limited. however, hubby is retired, so when we do drive, somehow we end up talking ourselves into leaving a day early, spend an extra night on the road.

which eventually usually turns into a night in Kissimmee, where we eat at the ponderosa, and check in super early at our WDW resort the next day!!!

how cool for you, christmas in disney! have a safe trip, you will be leaving after the thursday night snow. have fun!!!!:cheer2:

myxdvz
12-21-2012, 01:59 PM
I'm subbing to this thread because one of these days we will drive because flying a family of 6 MDW > MCO is getting expensive.

We have June reservations and managed to get flights using our points.

We also have Thanksgiving reservations and its too early to book flights - but we're out of points (saving them for the next 6 months until November flights open up) so we might end up driving.

My only worry is winter driving. It's been great the last 2 Christmases but what if we decide we'll drive and then got the weather? Ack!

Also, so far DH hasn't agreed to drive round trip. He's agreed to drive one way, but is adamant that he wouldn't want to do it going back coz he just "relaxed from vacation and wouldn't want to stress again" :rotfl: Maybe I'll have to drive back.

CamnWS6
02-13-2013, 01:09 PM
My wife and I made this trip with our two kids ( 5 & 5 months) last September and are planning on doing it again this May. We drove straight through both ways. We took the 65 to 24 to 75 route. Pretty much only stopped for gas and grabbing a quick bite to eat at a fast food place (drive-thru). I did most of the driving. I got us down to Georgia before finally needing to let my eyes rest a little bit. The two parts of the trip that were the worst were the bottom half of Georgia and Indiana. Very boring to drive through. We left Elk Grove around 3:40pm and were at our resort at 11:00am the next morning.

N.Lo
02-13-2013, 04:26 PM
My wife and I made this trip with our two kids ( 5 & 5 months) last September and are planning on doing it again this May. We drove straight through both ways. We took the 65 to 24 to 75 route. Pretty much only stopped for gas and grabbing a quick bite to eat at a fast food place (drive-thru). I did most of the driving. I got us down to Georgia before finally needing to let my eyes rest a little bit. The two parts of the trip that were the worst were the bottom half of Georgia and Indiana. Very boring to drive through. We left Elk Grove around 3:40pm and were at our resort at 11:00am the next morning.

We are making the trip down in March for our cruise. My DH is much more excited for driving than I am. We are also in Elk Grove. You have given me hope!

4HppyCamprs
02-13-2013, 05:37 PM
We are taking the trip from NW Indiana to Orlando next month and we will be driving for the first time. I am nervous, nobody else in the family seems nervous at all. I know we need to avoid rush hour Atlanta. We are going pretty slow and not driving non stop. Subbing here to see how others are doing it/have done it.

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droycro
02-13-2013, 06:33 PM
My wife and I made this trip with our two kids ( 5 & 5 months) last September and are planning on doing it again this May. We drove straight through both ways. We took the 65 to 24 to 75 route. Pretty much only stopped for gas and grabbing a quick bite to eat at a fast food place (drive-thru). I did most of the driving. I got us down to Georgia before finally needing to let my eyes rest a little bit. The two parts of the trip that were the worst were the bottom half of Georgia and Indiana. Very boring to drive through. We left Elk Grove around 3:40pm and were at our resort at 11:00am the next morning.

We are driving down in March, and we plan to leave around 2pm. We live in Algonquin. Based on your travel times, we should be at the World before lunch. Thanks for posting!

cruisingkat
02-14-2013, 12:38 PM
I'm subbing to this thread because one of these days we will drive because flying a family of 6 MDW > MCO is getting expensive.

We have June reservations and managed to get flights using our points.

We also have Thanksgiving reservations and its too early to book flights - but we're out of points (saving them for the next 6 months until November flights open up) so we might end up driving.

My only worry is winter driving. It's been great the last 2 Christmases but what if we decide we'll drive and then got the weather? Ack!

Also, so far DH hasn't agreed to drive round trip. He's agreed to drive one way, but is adamant that he wouldn't want to do it going back coz he just "relaxed from vacation and wouldn't want to stress again" :rotfl: Maybe I'll have to drive back.
We have driven down in Nov. and Dec. and usually allow ourselves an extra day just in case.
I will usually make a non-Disney reservation for the night we expect to arrive with our Disney reservation starting the night after. The non-Disney reservation is cancellable - we usually know by the time you need to cancel if we will make it down that day.
If we realize we can't make it, we can cancel that non-Disney reservation and stop along the way. If we had that night as a Disney reservation, we would be charged for that night and still have to pay for a room along the way. It we don't have to cancel, it actually works out great as we can get a good nights rest (have dinner and maybe shop at downtown Disney) and be ready to check into our Disney hotel, leave the bags, and hit the parks in the morning rested and relaxed.

CamnWS6
02-14-2013, 01:54 PM
We missed Atlanta rush hour both on the way down and back, but there was a good amount of construction in Kentucky and some of Tennessee. We hit that at night as well so I am not sure how that would be during the day. I actually really enjoyed driving though. The only thing that stunk was we drove through the mountains at night and didn't get to see the views. We are deciding if we want to change that this time or do it how we did last time without some of the traffic issues.

With leaving when we did thought the kids were only up for maybe half the trip.

afcgirl
03-10-2013, 05:22 PM
Hi, driving from Chicago burbs to DW in 10 days. We always take 65 (faster than 57) to 24 to 75.

Any construction issues lately? We are leaving in the afternoon this time and only driving to Louisville first day, so second day will be the long one.

Also, to those who drive straight through the night, how do you do it? Aren't you worried about safety issues? Also I feel I can't see good at night ::bitelip:
Would love to get there in one day though.

HHSTigerFan
03-10-2013, 05:43 PM
We normally take 57, have tried 65 a few, never seems to save us time and then need to mess with NWI and Indy, no thanks..

Leave at like 2AM, if you hustle will be down there by 9:00... Rather quite easy..

CopperWife
03-21-2013, 10:59 AM
We are starting from Schaumburg

I'm thinking 57 might be the way to go to avoid Indianapolis (and those scary looking giant windmills, LOL)

Hahahahahahahaha - those windmills freak me out, too! We drove by them at night on our last trip to Disney and my husband woke me up - "what am I looking at?" he asked. All you could see were these crazy red lights!

Our last trip to Disney was May 2011. We dropped off our dogs with family in Huntley and jumped on 90 at 6pm on a Friday night. We rolled into Pop at 1pm central time, 2 pm Florida time. Not too shabby! The hubby and I switched off and the kids were champs!

cruisingkat
03-22-2013, 01:09 AM
I know that it has been mentioned that IN has a higher speed limit than IL, but IL has raised the speed limit for trucks to the same as cars. So besides having less truck traffic, you don't get behind a truck that is passing at a lower speed limit than you are doing (taking for granted that you don't speed :) ). The difference between 65 and 57 is about 20 minutes or about 12 miles with 65 being the shorter route. To me avoiding all the heavy truck traffic on 65 is worth 20 minutes of my time.

As far as the windmills go in IN, we have noticed some popping up along 57 in middle to southern IL.

droycro
03-24-2013, 03:10 PM
We left on 3/22 at 2pm. Arrived at POR by 9:00am. Took 57 to 24 to 75, then Florida Turnpike to Western Beltway. Smooth sailing the whole way. We were at Nashville at 10:30pm, Atlanta at 2:00am, FL border at 6:00am. Made about 5 stops for gas/short breaks.

CamnWS6
04-24-2013, 02:03 PM
Hi, driving from Chicago burbs to DW in 10 days. We always take 65 (faster than 57) to 24 to 75.

Any construction issues lately? We are leaving in the afternoon this time and only driving to Louisville first day, so second day will be the long one.

Also, to those who drive straight through the night, how do you do it? Aren't you worried about safety issues? Also I feel I can't see good at night ::bitelip:
Would love to get there in one day though.


I had my wife go to sleep for a bit when it started getting dark so she would be rested. I drove until I needed a break from it. Then I took a little nap and was ready to go again.

This time around we are leaving at 3:00am and hoping to get down there around 10-11 that night. Were there any traffic issues when you went down in March?

Surfinpiratee
09-24-2013, 06:13 PM
Bump? Haha, I want to bring this thread alive!
DBF and I will be coming from north of Chicago in January! How is it making the drive in the winter? Any roads you've found better in the winter??

jimbostacks
09-24-2013, 08:14 PM
I did not have any issues with roads...must have caught good weather going through some of the mountain areas. On the way there we stayed over night in Chattanooga and spent a little time at Lookout Mountain, etc.... kind of cool. Then the next day we took off pretty early and hit Stone Mountain Georgia.....kids and I loved walking on top of that rock...thought it was the coolest thing....first time a cable car ride. On the way back, I ha a kid with a bad cold and could not take another night in a hotel, so I drove all the way back from Disney to Western Suburbs...with stops only 18 hours. Left at 6am Florida time. My kids were great, did not make a stop until past Atlanta. Took the normal route both ways......through Indianapolis, Louisville, Nashville, Chattanooga, Atlanta, etc... the only bad traffic each way was Nashville. I think we caught the end of a NFL game on the way there. I was a solo driver this time....I like road trips, but would like to hit tourist stops. If not in a hurry..I think there is a path through Gatlinburg that may be nice for a couple...you can rent cabin homes with fireplaces, etc....I think the Gatlinburg way adds 1-2 hours and goes through Asheville.

bjschil
10-10-2013, 12:39 PM
We are also leaving Dec 31 from SW Wisconsin. We realize, weather will play a factor in our departure time. Is the Briley Parkway truly an easier route through Nashville rather than staying on 24. Or is more dependent upon the time of day you take that route?

geffric
10-11-2013, 07:49 PM
We just got back and there was construction everywhere. and rain, fog, heavy rain!


We usually take 53 to 80, then 65 to 24 to 75. But to avoid the tie ups and construction around Indy, we took 24 to 57. It was clear sailing. BTW gas was way cheaper than here in the NW suburbs. Even on Disney property, it was 30 cents cheaper.

cruisingkat
10-13-2013, 06:07 PM
We are also leaving Dec 31 from SW Wisconsin. We realize, weather will play a factor in our departure time. Is the Briley Parkway truly an easier route through Nashville rather than staying on 24. Or is more dependent upon the time of day you take that route?
It is dependent on the time and day you drive through. We drove down on Sunday Sept. 29 around 11 am and breezed through on 24 - no delays and light traffic. Because we drive down to FL so often, we have the lane changes you need to make to stay on 24 through Nashville committed to memory.

glimmerman76
10-15-2013, 11:15 AM
57 has a bunch of construction going on... I always check http://gettingaroundillinois.com/gai.htm?mt=cons

mama23babies
03-25-2014, 08:07 PM
Wanted to bump this thread up, we're driving down on May 31st, wondering if anyone has any good advice!

Thanks!

Debbie

Mom2Luci
03-25-2014, 08:50 PM
Wanted to bump this thread up, we're driving down on May 31st, wondering if anyone has any good advice!

Thanks!

Debbie

We did the drive in Feb...mostly straight through there, but got stuck in Lafayette, IN overnight on the way home. We took 65 - left Mt Prospect at 8ish on Saturday night and got to Valdosta at 1 ish CT on Sunday. We were slowed down some by snow, but it wasn't bad.

Coming home was longer with more breaks and the unplanned overnight stop. I think the next time we drive we will have a planned stop on the way home around Louisville maybe.

Surfinpiratee
03-26-2014, 08:45 AM
Wanted to bump this thread up, we're driving down on May 31st, wondering if anyone has any good advice!

Thanks!

Debbie

We did the drive this past January! We took 65-23-75? The drive there was simple. It was just my boyfriend and I and we switched off every 3-4 hours, amd if we weren't driving we were sleeping, usually. There was one leg he drove for like 6 hours to let me sleep longer :)

We left Illinois around 8pm on a Thursday. Ended up in Disney World around 7pm on Friday. It took us lobger than we thought...but I also wasn't going the 70mph speed limit (I thought that seemed fast..then I got used to it..haha).

The drive home was a little tougher..we were more tired. We may or may not plan a stop on the way home. We left Florida about 1:30pm and arrived back home around noon the next day

2dogmom
03-26-2014, 01:06 PM
We drove down the summer of 2012 and stopped a night each way. We are toying with the idea of driving straight through. We have 3 drivers. I'm just afraid that we will be thrown off for the first day or two from not enough sleep. Did driving through catch up with you?

Surfinpiratee
03-26-2014, 01:27 PM
We drove down the summer of 2012 and stopped a night each way. We are toying with the idea of driving straight through. We have 3 drivers. I'm just afraid that we will be thrown off for the first day or two from not enough sleep. Did driving through catch up with you?

Not really, no. The first night we went to bed super early, no parks. We were tired from the parks and getting up early at the end of the trip (have a rest day!!!) Maybe drive straight through on the wsy there...and stop on the way home?

2dogmom
03-26-2014, 02:41 PM
Not really, no. The first night we went to bed super early, no parks. We were tired from the parks and getting up early at the end of the trip (have a rest day!!!) Maybe drive straight through on the wsy there...and stop on the way home?

That was my original plan, but then "we always do xyz on our first day we can't miss that" says the 13yo. May need to stop on the way down.

mama23babies
03-26-2014, 02:46 PM
We are leaving Saturday May 31st, and we have a Chef Mickey res for Sunday at 6, our plan is to leave before dawn on Saturday, and drive until about 10pm, sleep, and leave as early as possible on Sunday morning. We did that our last trip and got to ASMU by 3:00. My kids are as crazy as I am, they wanted to hit the park as soon as possible, so we did Magic Kingdom until close. We slept in the next morning. We figure we'll run on adrenaline the first day. This time, Sunday at MK has EMH until 2 am. Not sure we'll make it that long, but who knows?

Deb

MarthaJr.
03-28-2014, 12:12 AM
We're in Wisconsin and have done the trek 4 times and vowed the last time we drove- after a 4 hour delay in Atlanta, that we'd never drive again. We were hot, exhausted, carsick, and had a cranky/frustrated teenager--nothing worse than one of those! (According to DH-you shouldn't run the AC in your car when you're sitting in a traffic jam on the freeway for more than a couple minutes---whatever :confused3 lol!) Thanks to Southwest Airlines I've not had to go through that again. :cool1:

With that being said, our first trip down--15 years ago in October was really quite pleasant. The kids were small and easily amused in the car. Who knew a teenager would be more difficult to keep happy?

Good Luck and have a safe trip!

irish dancer
03-29-2014, 12:44 PM
We have done the drive the past 4 years and will do so again May 30th. The cost of 5 plane tickets is just more than we want to budget so it's either drive or not go so we drive.

We've done the 57 route most of the time and feel that there is less truck traffic than on 65. Either route is really fine. We do not do it straight through. On the way down we stop in Macon, GA and the way back somewhere in TN it all depends on if we hit a park on the morning of departure day or if we hit the road right away.

Our kids are all tween/teens so they self-entertain and we pack a lot of snacks and drinks so stops are usually quick gas/bathroom breaks and we make sure to avoid Atlanta during rush hour AT ALL COSTS! Sometimes delays are unavoidable though, last year on our trip home we sat for 90min without moving just after crossing over into GA. Thank God for smart phones I was able to google and find out that there was an accident that had the highway closed while they helicoptered people from the accident out. It messed up our plans but at least we knew what was going on.

If anyone is making the drive for Spring Break updates on construction, etc would be greatly appreciated!

lost*in*cyberspace
03-29-2014, 01:08 PM
Best route Chicago to Orlando? Get in your car, drive to O'Hare or Midway, and board a plane for MCO.