Driving versus Flying?

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by itsmeamanda, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. GATORinaZ28

    GATORinaZ28 DIS Dad#764

    Jan 9, 2008
    We only live 6.5 hours away and usually drive. However, we decided to fly on our last trip. The only benefit was the "not having to drive" part of it on the way home. It was nice to relax after an exhausting trip and just ride a plane.

    We are debating whether or not we will do that again this year, though. We found that waiting on busses wasn't our thing, though 99% of the time it was not a bad wait. We also found that flying took us longer en-route than driving did.
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  3. Lori77

    Lori77 Mouseketeer

    Sep 26, 2003
    We are headed down this Saturday in our first attempt to drive to the world. It will be about 22 hours each way. We have a 3yr old and almost 8yr old, so we are not too sure how this will work.

    I have some fun games and portable DVD, plus a kindle and DS's for the kids, so it should be OK. We will be driving overnight, so they should sleep, right? :-)

    We are anxious to see the sights, and make some stops along the way, including taking a detour for the ocean. We are landlocked in Nebraska, so this will actually give us a chance to be near the beach rather than flying and using ME.

    Thank you to all the posts for giving me some hope that this is a good thing and that we will share many memories along the way!:rotfl:
  4. Scout54

    Scout54 Mouseketeer

    Nov 13, 2010
    We're in NW Alabama & we have driven down most of the times we've been! It's not that bad of a trip, 10 hours straight through, but with our 4 & 6 year old princesses, it usually stretches out to 12 hours. We try to leave VERY early in the AM. We find that leaving at 2 or 3 gets us several hours of driving time while the girls sleep & then DH & I can swap off driving & napping in the afternoon. Like others have said, DVDs & little dollar store Disney surprises help the trip go much smoother for the little ones!

    Good luck!
  5. MinnieLovesMickey12

    MinnieLovesMickey12 DIS Veteran

    Dec 16, 2012
    We have done both. The first trip DH and I went on to WDW without the kids we drove. It is a 12 hour drive for us and it costs us about $250 in gas. That was it. Plus the 2 whole days wasted in travel time.

    When we fly it is about $300 per person RT for airfare and about $200 for a rental car and gas for the week. SO flying costs us over double what driving costs us.

    But to me, my wasted time when we drive is worth more. I prefer to fly.

    Even when all 5 of us went we still flew even though that was quite a chunk of change for the 5 of us to fly. And we had to rent a full size car so it would be big enough for 5 of us and 7 bags.

    But there is no way I was planning on being in a car with 3 tweens/teens for 12 hours.

    If we couldn't have afforded to fly then I would have just waited and saved up longer so we could fly.

    I will avoid ever driving again if I can help it. Unless my husband springs a last minute unexpected trip on me and says we can only go if we drive. Then of course I will go in the car.
  6. Missytara

    Missytara I'm all ears!

    Apr 3, 2009
    I have always flown.

    This year, I am traveling with three people, Mom and two kids, who cannot afford to fly. They also wanted to have a car at their disposal, in case they wanted to go to Universal one day. They were going to drive and I was going to fly.

    I decided, at 52, I may never get the opportunity to drive to Disney again, so I took them up on the offer of driving with them. That gives us three drivers, instead of 2, so we each only have to drive around 6 hours or so.

    I am really looking forward to it, but I will be more than happy to fly on all the rest of my trips.
  7. AstroDad

    AstroDad Earning My Ears

    Jan 14, 2013
    We drove the 16 hours from Houston and swore unless we absolutely couldn't afford it we would never drive again. The kids were fine, they had movies to watch, books to read, etc...but the drive home was killer for us. I got a speeding ticket in Florida for going 5 miles over the limit, then it was ad downpour for the final 5 hours. Just a nightmare.

    We are heading out this Fall and flying for sure.

    Depending on when you are going keep an eye on the airfare. Southwest especially can run some rates that make it a no-brainer. I am waiting for the late October flights to come out and have $2000 - $2500 budgeted for our family of 5 to fly, but noticed when playing around that for Mid September we could all fly round trip for $1000!
  8. richkaryn

    richkaryn Mouseketeer

    Feb 1, 2013
    We toyed with same idea this time (our drive is about 10 hrs give or take depending on traffic through Atlanta mostly). When we figured up the cheapest rate we could find for the 3 of us to fly was about $1100 (plus parking at airport for week), we then considered that in addition to cost would flight really save us that much time? When you figure that we have to drive about 1.5 hrs to airport, get there about 2 hrs before flight, then time in air, time to get off plane and to board ME, it really was only going to save us 2-3 hours and to us 2-3 hours wasn't worth the $1100+ cost. Personally, I'd much rather spend about $300-350 on fuel and drive. When we drive, we also leave the afternoon before and stop about 6 -7 hrs in and find a decent price on a hotel (sometimes we pick a stopping destination ahead of time and use hotwire--got great deal in Tifton, GA last time for $52) just to break up the drive.
  9. Reese D

    Reese D Mouseketeer

    Jan 11, 2013
    I think not being in a car with a 4 and 6 yo for 12 hours is the only benefit I would need to consider. My kids are great car travelers and we drive a few hours to the shore every weekend in the summer - but 4-5 hours is my limit. Anything over that requires a flight. :)
  10. desertbloom

    desertbloom Mouseketeer

    Jan 19, 2004
    We have made the 22+hr drive down to Fl on numerous occasions when I used to be reeealllly terrified of flying. When you only have a week and a half of vacation time it really sucks up a good number of days. Now that I make 5-6 RT flights a year to various places, I have learned to only get mildly nervous. I can't imagine being trapped with my husband and nearly adult daughter in a car for 2 days each way. However, if I had an 8-12 hour drive I might do it.... if the cost savings made sense. Also you need to weight out the fact that the airport can be a debacle, especially if you haven't flown in a long time.
  11. SteveandAli511

    SteveandAli511 Earning My Ears

    Jul 12, 2012
    It would be about a 24 hour drive for us (Southeastern Mass) and is nothing I'd truly be exciting doing, especially on the way back. We're lucky in that my mother works for Southwest so we're able to fly for free and that lets us do a lot more when we're down there.

    Even if we had to pay we could still fly round trip from Providence for under $500 since it's just the two of us. If our distance was 10 to 12 I'd strongly consider it though.
  12. omgninjas

    omgninjas Earning My Ears

    Jan 19, 2013
    We've done both, and it only took one tantrum on an airplane to make me reconsider ever getting onto an airplane with my kids again. :eek:

    This year, we're driving (We're from north of Toronto so it works out to about 3 days, depending on the number of potty breaks needed).
    The last time we drove, the DD's were 3 and 6mos. Now they're going to be 7 and 4! If they get tired or cranky, we don't mind pulling over and running around a rest area, or exploring a cracker barrel gift shop (seriously, my kids love these). We try not to eat meals in the car, just to break up the monotony, and we choose hotels with playgrounds and/or pools so the little ones can get some exercise in at night.
    It comes down to different strokes, I guess. I love flying by myself, but with my kids it becomes a very expensive hassle. Flights for the 6 of us going down would be around 3000 dollars - driving will be half that, including hotel rooms, gas, and food.
  13. mommy2mb

    mommy2mb Mouseketeer

    Oct 16, 2011
    We drove last year from Illinois with a 7 year old and 1 year old. We really liked having our car with us, and for us it was alot cheaper then flying down. We are planning on driving again for the next trip!
  14. mom2reese

    mom2reese Mouseketeer

    Jan 4, 2011
    We flew the first time we went to WDW in 2009. It was an awful experience!!! The trip there was fine, BUT...

    On the way back home our flight was cancelled, then we got a new plane, but the pilots had too many hours and we had to exit the plane. We were about to taxi. Idk why that happened....Not sure why we were even able to board. So then we were put up in a hotel near the airport for the night. But our luggage was ???? So we had nothing except our carry-ons. We had to get up at 4:30 am and be shuttled back to the airport. We had to fly home on a MUCH smaller airplane and it was a rough bumpy flight. When we finally got to the Houston airport, they couldn't find our luggage. After looking for what seemed like eternity, they were able to locate it. Then we were shocked at the cost to park!!! Then I was sick from the flight and had to have my husband pull over so I could puke!!!!

    We've never flown again! Lol driving is the only way to go for us. It's about 14 hours. But gives us the sense of control that both dh and I need!! Lol
  15. Chuck65

    Chuck65 DIS Veteran

    May 20, 2006
    We've driven most of the time, but I can cash in some miles with Delta and get the four of us round trip out of GSP for just a little over $500...gotta love that!
  16. MyOtherSS

    MyOtherSS Mouseketeer

    Sep 30, 2012
    I like flying because after such a long drive i feel like you lose a day trying to recover.
  17. abinormal

    abinormal Mouseketeer

    Jan 23, 2013
    I live in Michigan so the drive is about 24 hours nonstop. I have a relative in northern Tennessee who I've stayed with before if we needed to stop for a night. Flying is just a huge pain in my butt, and I've never even done it with kids before. I've done the drive enough times, plus it saves so much money that unless I got a crazy good deal on a flight I plan on driving.
  18. DVCMikey

    DVCMikey DIS Veteran

    Sep 5, 2009
    The other reason I like to drive is because we usually go down in the winter months. And flying it always feels like there is sickness in the air. people hacking up a lung, sneezing etc.

    I rather not get sick while on vacation. Doesn't mean you won't catch anything on the road but a little easier when cooped up in the cabin.

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