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Old 11-15-2012, 12:02 PM   #1
CerysG
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Best touring company for bus day trips?

I'm tossing around the idea of doing a day trip outside of Orlando, either NASA or Clearwater beach. We aren't renting a car but I see there are all sorts of bus tours you can get to do this. Has anyone done any of these and if so what company did they use. Being from Saskatchewan my kids have never been to the ocean so in some ways it seems a shame to be so close....though Clearwater is on the Gulf so does that count? On the other hand I know DH would really like to go to NASA so that is a strong posiblity. I guess it would come down to what everyone wants to do the most. Any how we would give up going to wet'n'wild to do one of these, but will be going to other water parks so not a big deal. Any how anyone done one of these day trips on a tour bus?
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:22 PM   #2
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Depending on how many of you there are and when you are going it may be just as cheap (and way more convenient) to just rent a vehicle and drive yourself. We always rent down there and have never found it difficult to navigate around. Well, except for the sneaky-off-to-the-side toll booths, but that is another story...
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:32 PM   #3
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Agree with the car rental comment. We have rented vehicles for under $20 all in for a single day and just over $200 for 10 days from the airport for a larger vehicle. There are a couple of convenient locations near the parks if you are only looking for a day or two and they tend to be less expensive than the airport.

We do bring a GPS to help get around. With the GPS have not had any problems.

DH & DD usually spend a day or two at the Kennedy Space Centre each trip. There are a number of special tours available that take you to different areas. There are beaches near the space centre so you could drop off those interested in the space centre and the rest could spend the day at the beach.

A vehicle is also handy to pick up fruit, snacks and beverages for the room.
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:29 PM   #4
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Viator usually has lots of options for 1 day tours.
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:42 PM   #5
crampr
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Renting a car would be great. Where do you rent a car for $20 a day? Thanks.
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:59 PM   #6
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We usually go with National or Enterprise. Enterprise picks you up but we have found the National location at the Buena Vista Palace convenient as it is right accross from the first bus stop for DTD. There is also a location at the Dolphin and the Car Centre.

Check the Transportation thread for current deals and codes. Also mousesavers.com list current codes for all the rental companies. It tends to be trial and error to find out which code works best for a specific time.

Here are the Orlando National locations rates will vary between locations and type of unit:
Buena Vista Palace Hotel (ORLR03)
Disney Dolphin Resort (ORLR13)
Orl Walt Disney Car Care (ORLR02)
Orlando Intl Arpt (MCOT01)
Orlando Peabody Hotel (ORLR11)
Shades Of Green (ORLR12)

Good luck.

Last edited by ABCanada; 11-18-2012 at 08:37 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 01:37 PM   #7
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I've been thinking about renting a car for the day but not sure we want to drive on the freeways down there! Let's face it highways in Saskatchewan are not the same thing! And then they have those toll bridges as well and not a clue what to do at them! We would never have something like that here way to socialist ! Any how we will be staying on Universal at this part of our trip so don't know if there is any car rental places near there. Would be nice to have them drop off and pick up at the resort though. I guess we'll have to see what the kids want to do though I know DH was very keen on NASA! I know the youngest will say the beach because not to many 9 year old girls are intersted in space stuff. Oldest girl will say NASA and middle daughter don't know. Me I'm good either way! I've been to the ocean lots of time so not a big deal for me. NASA might be interesting though. I will have to ponder this some more.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:31 PM   #8
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Being from Saskatoon, let me tell you the freeways and highways in Florida are a lot easier to get around then you would think.

I think you would be fine getting to either coast with the roads being double lanes in both directions.

As for the tolls, if you rent with Alamo you just drive through the prepaid lane(sunpass lane I think it's called) and Alamo will add the toll to your credit card after the rental. They also add a $2/day fee for the service to a max of $6 for the reservation.

Don't be afraid of the roads, a car rental will save you the hassle when you go to Universal as well.

But

If you are looking for tours, maybe check with Mears or look on Trip Advisor for reviews of tour operators.
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