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      09-20-2022, 08:46 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G99M5 View Post
Hi we are flying into NYC from the Southern Hemisphere and staying a week in Times Square

- what is it like to hire a car and drive from New York City to Niagra Falls to Lake Michigan. between 15 Dec - 25 Dec

friends at Lake Michigan will be hosting us and then driving us to Chicago after new year.

wondering about road conditions and which hire car company?

if not I'm happy to take a bus or something ... but not sure how that would work

thanks for any tips
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Originally Posted by G99M5 View Post
Hi we are flying into NYC from the Southern Hemisphere and staying a week in Times Square

- what is it like to hire a car and drive from New York City to Niagra Falls to Lake Michigan. between 15 Dec - 25 Dec

friends at Lake Michigan will be hosting us and then driving us to Chicago after new year.

wondering about road conditions and which hire car company?

if not I'm happy to take a bus or something ... but not sure how that would work

thanks for any tips
Keep us updated I've got cousin around there also
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      09-21-2022, 04:38 AM   #46
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if i hired a car in Buffalo, would I be allowed to drive into Canada?
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      09-21-2022, 05:33 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G99M5 View Post
if i hired a car in Buffalo, would I be allowed to drive into Canada?
Read the contract on the rental agency website. It’s similar to renting a car in Europe where driving is allowed in some countries, but not others.
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      09-21-2022, 09:35 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G99M5 View Post
if i hired a car in Buffalo, would I be allowed to drive into Canada?
Check with your car rental company but you can also walk across the Rainbow bridge. Make sure to check Canadian and USA requirements. You need to fill out web form for Canadian customs. You will not be able to enter if this is not done. Canadian agents have very little tolerance so keep things in order and no jokes are needed. The entire area is covered by cameras so keep in mind they are recording you the entire time.

https://www.niagarafallslive.com/nia...nformation.htm

https://www.niagarafallslive.com/rainbow_bridge.htm

When walking back from Canada to USA you will need 4 qtrs. There are coin machines but sometimes they don't work.

The view from Canada is amazing even when frozen!
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      09-21-2022, 11:04 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Mavus View Post
you can also walk across the Rainbow bridge. Make sure to check Canadian and USA requirements. You need to fill out web form for Canadian customs. You will not be able to enter if this is not done. Canadian agents have very little tolerance so keep things in order and no jokes are needed. The entire area is covered by cameras so keep in mind they are recording you the entire time.

https://www.niagarafallslive.com/nia...nformation.htm

https://www.niagarafallslive.com/rainbow_bridge.htm

When walking back from Canada to USA you will need 4 qtrs. There are coin machines but sometimes they don't work.

The view from Canada is amazing even when frozen!
did not know this thanks
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      09-22-2022, 01:04 PM   #50
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My wife, then girlfriend, lived in Manhattan (51st & 2nd) in the mid-1990s for about 2 years then moved North, closer to her employer. I visited her every other weekend. It's a fun place to visit, but it got old after a while. New Yorkers are very nice people one on one in a personal setting like a bar or restaurant. I've heard it's a bit more crime ridden now than in the mid-'90s.

Food is great almost everywhere. OP, get a pizza while you are there.
NYC is relatively safe nowadays, safer than almost any other big city in US. Now if he decides to visit Philadelphia, that's a whole other story.
You mean Killadelphia?
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      09-22-2022, 07:33 PM   #51
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C'mon the City of Brotherly Love isn't bad. You must be thinking of Baltimore.

Visit the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, then for lunch up to Dalessandro's Steaks for a steak sandwich, best in Philly. Walk around Manayunk then off to the next destination.
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      09-22-2022, 08:06 PM   #52
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C'mon the City of Brotherly Love isn't bad. You must be thinking of Baltimore.

Visit the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, then for lunch up to Dalessandro's Steaks for a steak sandwich, best in Philly. Walk around Manayunk then off to the next destination.
It's not too bad, but like every large city has gotten markedly worse over the past two years.
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      09-23-2022, 06:49 AM   #53
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I have a meeting there. noted!
Ugh. Maybe don't note.

I find more often than not the people who tell me NYC is expensive are the ones eating at Olive Garden in Times Square. And NYC is hard to get around?? He must be joking. Or, more than likely, trying to drive around NYC and/or afraid of the subway.
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      09-23-2022, 10:11 AM   #54
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Driving a car in Manhattan at the usual suspected times is very slow. You know this. Tunnels and bridges. A tourist with limited traffic pattern knowledge and tight time schedule will have difficulty.
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      09-23-2022, 03:01 PM   #55
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Driving a car in Manhattan at the usual suspected times is very slow. You know this. Tunnels and bridges. A tourist with limited traffic pattern knowledge and tight time schedule will have difficulty.
I sure do. I assume the OP is not planning on driving around NYC the week they are here. If they are then, yes, I agree with you that getting around the City will be hard.
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      09-23-2022, 04:33 PM   #56
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hi thanks, no not driving around NYC.

here are the definites - NYC (inbound) - Washington DC - Buffalo - Boyne (friends) - Chicago (outbound). we have exactly 28 days.

thinking of taking the train from NYC Times Square to DC.

then between DC and Buffalo we can't decide on anything

I think hire a Ford Edge (they are all AWD?) and drive from DC. not sure if it will come with winter tires ... fingers crossed ...

still keen on Boston, Toronto ... but they seem a bit out of the way ...
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      09-23-2022, 09:27 PM   #57
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All season tires are the norm in the US, at least in north-ish areas, which includes all of your destinations. No need for snow tires, studs or chains in your travel area. Chains and studs are not permitted in PA and NY to my knowledge. Definitely not allowed in Ohio and Michigan.

Read the rental agency website for car spec. Send a message or start a chat with customer service if you can't get the answer on AWD. AWD cars are for sure available.
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      09-24-2022, 01:04 PM   #58
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Didn't read whole thread so maybe it's been addressed already.

Niagara falls is meh at best. Canadian side is much nicer than US but both are very touristy. We found the state parks and falls around the Ithaca area MUCH better than Niagara. That being said no idea what the conditions would be or if they are even open that time of the year.

Havent been to Chicago of Michigan so can't comment on those.

I wouldn't spend a whole week in time square. Then again I'm not a big city fan but personally Boston > NY and DC is cool for all the museums and monuments etc, the rest of it meh.
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      01-10-2023, 01:40 AM   #59
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so just to close the loop. did my thing in the US and I have to say Americans are very polite and respectful, complete opposite to what the world made me believe.

NYC - JFK was slow, extremely shortstaffed but that meant zero customs. 99% of people were waved thru. taxi was dodgy, almost got scammed. taxi ride was worse, roads were worse than Asia. Manhattan was great for tourists like us. even the subways! now all the movies make sense. even Madagascar. and Home Alone.
highlight was Lion King on Broadway.

train from Moynihan Penn to Union DC, no complaints

DC - complete opposite of NYC. everything vast and spread out. police ++. felt super safe. did Museums and Monuments that sort of stuff.

Jetblue to Boston - those Embraer 190 seats were huuuuge. got emailed every time bags moved. TSA wasn't too bad.

Boston - Lobsters everywhere, don't eat at tourist markets. unfortunately we were right in the tourist area, there was a market or two in every direction. watched the Bruins, disappointed that the referee stopped every fight before they got going.

again Jet Blue/TSA no issues, to Buffalo

hired a 2022 Expedition with 4000miles, took about 1 hr to learn how to drive on the right side of the road then the brain got it after 1 day. Wegmans for sushi, stayed at Niagara Ontario. loved the truck, made X7s look like a kid's toy. weird 10 speed transmission. exhaust tuned to sound like a V8 racer for some reason. drove to Michigan. interstates are great, no such roads where i'm from. beat the "storm of a generation". stayed at a farm, shopped at Amish stores, got snowed in. understood EVs wasn't gonna fly. trucks started to make sense. what's up with Buffalo wings - you guys like to feel pain!

drove a Tahoe to Chicago. another American truck. you guys know how to manufacture stuff that are fit for purpose. Chicago felt like Gotham city. underpasses, subways didn't feel safe. the stuff above ground level was otherwise pretty unique.

within a blink of an eye memories were made, money vanished, and back to the grind ... bought a M550i over the phone while i was overseas, waiting for it to arrive

oh and remember never to pay list price for premium economy. thought i'd hang out with the kids for 17 hrs, no more comfortable than economy. will stick to business class where possible for the flat bed ...
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      01-10-2023, 07:29 AM   #60
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Premium Economy REALLY depends on the airline. Some like United just give you a few more inches, others have a much better seat, no contest.
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      01-10-2023, 11:26 AM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G99M5 View Post
so just to close the loop. did my thing in the US and I have to say Americans are very polite and respectful, complete opposite to what the world made me believe.

NYC - JFK was slow, extremely shortstaffed but that meant zero customs. 99% of people were waved thru. taxi was dodgy, almost got scammed. taxi ride was worse, roads were worse than Asia. Manhattan was great for tourists like us. even the subways! now all the movies make sense. even Madagascar. and Home Alone.
highlight was Lion King on Broadway.

train from Moynihan Penn to Union DC, no complaints

DC - complete opposite of NYC. everything vast and spread out. police ++. felt super safe. did Museums and Monuments that sort of stuff.

Jetblue to Boston - those Embraer 190 seats were huuuuge. got emailed every time bags moved. TSA wasn't too bad.

Boston - Lobsters everywhere, don't eat at tourist markets. unfortunately we were right in the tourist area, there was a market or two in every direction. watched the Bruins, disappointed that the referee stopped every fight before they got going.

again Jet Blue/TSA no issues, to Buffalo

hired a 2022 Expedition with 4000miles, took about 1 hr to learn how to drive on the right side of the road then the brain got it after 1 day. Wegmans for sushi, stayed at Niagara Ontario. loved the truck, made X7s look like a kid's toy. weird 10 speed transmission. exhaust tuned to sound like a V8 racer for some reason. drove to Michigan. interstates are great, no such roads where i'm from. beat the "storm of a generation". stayed at a farm, shopped at Amish stores, got snowed in. understood EVs wasn't gonna fly. trucks started to make sense. what's up with Buffalo wings - you guys like to feel pain!

drove a Tahoe to Chicago. another American truck. you guys know how to manufacture stuff that are fit for purpose. Chicago felt like Gotham city. underpasses, subways didn't feel safe. the stuff above ground level was otherwise pretty unique.

within a blink of an eye memories were made, money vanished, and back to the grind ... bought a M550i over the phone while i was overseas, waiting for it to arrive

oh and remember never to pay list price for premium economy. thought i'd hang out with the kids for 17 hrs, no more comfortable than economy. will stick to business class where possible for the flat bed ...
Great itinerary, thanks for updating the thread. Good choice on the combination of flying + driving.
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