Tips For Traveling Without a Car

Traveling Without a Car

In the United States, the car is king, and this is reflected in the fact that it’s not the easiest place to travel if you don’t have a car. However, it is possible to do this, and there are some advantages to giving it a try. Gas is expensive, and driving can be tiring. Renting a car can be especially expensive, but driving long distances can put some wear and tear on your vehicle. Leaving the car at home can give you the opportunity to experience America in a very different Traveling Without a Carway.-

Bus Travel

Buses are still a great way to get around. You get to see the passing scenery instead of just the road in front of you. You can sleep, read, watch a movie or talk to your seatmate. If you’re planning a cross-country trip, there are few places better to start than Miami. It’s not quite the southernmost city in the country, but it’s close, and it’s a thrilling, vibrant place with excellent food, architecture and nightlife. You can utilize bus trips from Miami to Gainesville that will get you up to the northern part of the state in about a day–the exact travel time depends on the bus and route you take–and Gainesville, a mellow college town with plenty to do, is a good place to stop off. From there, you can head across the Florida panhandle or continue north into Georgia.

Bicycle Touring

It’s unconventional, but you could consider cycling all or part of a trip across the country. Alternately, most states have an annual group bicycle ride, such as RAGBRAI in Iowa (the Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) or BRAG in Georgia (Bicycle Race Across Georgia). Cycling is great exercise, wonderful for camaraderie and can be an unbeatable way to see the country in a whole new way. If you’re planning to ride your bike across the country alone, look into a group like Warm Showers that connects bicycle travelers with hosts who will give them a place to stay for the night.

Hiking-Traveling Without a Car

Cycling is one thing but walking across the country might sound like a little too much–until you consider that there are three long-distance trails that run north to south across the country, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg for the many opportunities to walk a little or a lot. The Pacific Crest Trail, the Continental Divide Trail, and the Appalachian Trail will take you across some of the most incredible scenery in the country. You’ll also get a chance to see America’s five most iconic signs and stop to take pictures in a way that vehicle travel simply does not always permit. 

Go By Train-Traveling Without a Car

People often forget about train travel, or they think of it as something that’s available in Europe, but not the U.S. Train travel can be a great way to see the country. Sometimes, there are passes available that allow you to book a long journey with stopovers along the way. Alternately, you can take a single journey on a famous scenic route such as the California Zephyr, which goes across the Rocky and Sierra Nevada Mountains to Chicago. Travel in style with a sleeping compartment and enjoy complimentary meals in the dining car.


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