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Road Trip Reflections

A friend asked us if we would do this trip again. My answer is yes and no. I'd say yes because traveling together in one car was really the best available option for our move. Our options were:

1. Driving in 2 cars: 1 adult and the dog in one, 1 adult and my daughter in other, switching cars/family members as necessary for everyone's sanity.
I can't imagine having done this because inevitably my daughter would drop something or want a new show on the iPad, so the car that she would be in would always be pulling over.

2. Drive in 2 cars, but persuade another adult to join us: this way my daughter would travel in a car with 2 adults, with the one in the passenger seat attending to her needs.
Not a bad idea, but after some searches of airline fares, we decided not to pursue this any further: the cost of the one-way fares--and the one from State College in particular--made this choice comparable in price to paying to have one car shipped to us.

3. Ship a car. My husband drives the other one with the dog, while my daughter and I fly one-way to PA.
This option would make it quite easy for my daughter and me to get to PA, but what would happen once we got there? We'd be in an empty house with very little to keep her entertained--and it would be that way for a good 5 to 6 days. Plus, my husband wouldn't get any break from the driving.

4. Similar to option 3, but instead my daughter and I fly one-way to MI to stay with family.
There would be more toys and more people to keep my daughter entertained, but this would have added several hours to my husband's solo drive. The other issue with this option was that it was a gamble: if our stuff were to come late in the delivery window, it could be a nice opportunity to see people, but if it were to come early (as it did), then my husband would be racing to MI to pick us up and then leaving the next day for PA. This left us with...

5. Ship a car, with everyone traveling together in the other car: a long, sometimes grueling journey, but avoiding the pitfalls of the other options.

That said, I have to say that, unless I am faced with similar circumstances and options, I will never again sign up voluntarily for a 6-day family road trip across the USA! Road trips are fine, but the pace was too hectic to even enjoy hotel pools, much less the cities we visited. Taking along the dog and having a car that was packed pretty full of stuff besides our luggage (laptops, dog bed, etc.) just added to the stress. We have another road trip for this summer, but it will definitely be shorter and (I hope!) more enjoyable.

Thanks for reading! Next, I will do a roundup of the places we stayed and catch up on our April travels and sightseeing.

Posted by amikulski 18:02 Archived in USA Tagged children cars

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