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Manassas or Woodbridge?

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Chicago
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Manassas or Woodbridge?

We have a large family and are trying to save a little money on a DC vacation staying a little farther out. I got two comperable places one in Manassas and one in Woodbridge. Any opinions on which would be the better choice? Are they both nice areas?

Washington DC...
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1. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

You may save some money, but you will spend hours commuting into the city from either of those places. I recommend you rethink your strategy. Traffic is horrendous on work days. And be more specific because both places have areas that are less than wonderful.

If you do decide to go that route, the traffic from Manassas is likely to be somewhat less horrible than from Woodbridge. But neither will be any fun for whoever is driving.

Washington DC...
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2. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

Manassas.

You can use the VRE train right from Old Town which is a very nice area. The fare is about $8 each way (I think) and you are in D.C. at either L'Enfant Plaza or Union Station in less than an hour.

Woodbridge is spread out along Route 1, which is a lot of strip malls and some spots nice, and some depressing.

Edited: 30 November 2009, 00:41
Washington DC...
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3. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

And if you are a family of 5 you will spend $80 getting to and from DC on a train with a fairly limited schedule. How much better to use that money to stay somewhere closer to the city where you would not spend so much time commuting. And VRE doesn't run on weekends.

McLean, Virginia
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4. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

I would not recommend either of these locations for a trip to DC. If you do a bit of shopping around, you will find something closer in. I know hotels in DC are expensive, but you want to visit DC and not spend all the time commuting from some remote location. You will just waste time.

Arlington, Virginia
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5. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

I too would look for something closer to the city center. Asking which is better between Manassas and Woodbridge for a visit to downtown D.C. is like asking which is better between Aurora, Joliet, or Gary for a visit to see Chicago. You can get to the city from all of those places, and lots of people do it every day, but being a commuter isn't being on vacation.

If you REALLY need to pick one, I'd lean towards Manassas, also because of the VRE option. But as noted it is expensive and is a commuter service that only runs sometimes.

Manassas, VA
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6. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

I answered you in the Manassas forum as well.

Manassas is the better option between the two, the hotels are newer or have been refreshed recently and Manassas is a more user-friendly town.

I don't think the VRE is a very good option not just because of the cost but because of the limited hours of operation. You will have to end your day in DC pretty early to head home and DC is wonderful at night.

McLean, Virginia
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7. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

If you stay in either of these locations, you will have very slow commutes in rush hour. Both 66 and 95 are miserable during rush hours.

If you stay closer to DC, you can go "home" during the day to rest. What you are going to have is horrendous commutes. This is going to add to the exhaustion that all tourists feel in DC because there is so much walking. Your commutes during the rush hour could be 1 1/2 hours each way. You might not be able to avoid it in the morning. In the evening, do not try and get out of DC until 7:00pm is you are really sold on these locations.

Woodbridge is near Potomac Mills--the largest oulet mall in VA (and VA's most visited "attraction:). Manassas is near the Manassas/Bull Run battlefield. That is the best I can say about either location.

Va
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8. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

I doubt you will find that great of a savings staying in either location. You can find hotels in Arlington, Alexandria, or falls Church that are as nice and priced close to what you will find in Woodbridge or Manassas without having to make the drive to either area. The Americana in Crystal City is a great value for someone on a budget.

If you are set on those two locations I would call it a toss up. They are both suburban locations with similar benefits and drawbacks. Both with take about the same amount of time to get into DC.

Fairfax, Virginia
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9. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

I think you should try your search elsewhere. Instead of Manassas, why not find something closer like Fairfax. I would avoid Woodbridge at all costs, you'll be more stressed out dealing with the horrendous traffic. Not worth it at all. Have you tried Lorton (althought I'm not a fan of Lorton) or the edge of Alexandria before you get to Lorton?

Basically although you might save a "little" money, you end up spending more money trying to drive around. Have you tried all fo the options like Alexandria, Springfield (not a fan either but I'll mention it), Annandale, Centreville, Chantilly, etc.

Chicago
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10. Re: Manassas or Woodbridge?

Thanks for your input. I have decided to stay in Manassas. I have looked extensively thru DC and all area hotels. To stay in a 3 room Manassas suite for $1,005 vs $2,000+ 2 room suite in DC is a big savings.