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amtrak

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birmingham
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amtrak

Hi- i wish to travel from San Diego to Los Angeles LAX to catch our flight back to the uk in Aug 2009,we as a family are thinking about catching the train.

I would appreciate any advice about any experiencies of this journey-i.e places of interest to look out for,journey times, safety,connections from the train station in Los Angeles to LAX.-Thanks

Phantomf4.

West Hollywood...
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for Los Angeles
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1. Re: amtrak

I'll let others discuss the scenery along this route. I would strongly recommend hiring a car for this transfer -- even if you don't drive anywhere else during your holiday here.

The drive is very simple: north on the 5 freeway, connecting to the 405 freeway, exiting at Century Bl (LAX exit).

There are lots of reasons for driving:

1. It's much faster -- about 2-1/2 hours WITHOUT TRAFFIC. Compare that to 3 hours on the train plus 30 to 45 minutes transferring from the L.A. rail station (Union Station) to LAX plus any waiting time in between the 2 conveyances.

2. You can stop and sightsee at any number of beach areas and in the city of Long Beach (Aquarium of the Pacific, Queen Mary Museum, etc).

3. It's less expensive. If there are 4 of you traveling, the cost of the train will be $87. The cost of the transfer from Union Station to the airport will be $24 for a total of $111. A hire car will cost 22 GBP (per yescarhire.com). Add to that gasoline (what you blokes call 'petrol') for about $15 or $20 and that still comes out to about to only about $50 US, less than 1/2 the cost of the train.

If driving is not a possiblility, you can transfer at Union Station to the "Union Station Flyaway' bus which you will find in parking space #9 in the bus plaza outside of the REAR doors of Union Station. Pay for passage from the cashier which is not far from parking space #9 == $6 per person. The bus departs twice an hour, on the hour and the 1/2 hour. The ride is between 30 and 45 minutes (sometimes longer, depending on the tine of day and day of the week. Friday afternoons are the worst).

Rancho Santa...
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2. Re: amtrak

What is driving your decision to consider taking the train? What is your schedule for getting to LAX from San Diego? What are your primary objectives? Sightseeing? Speed? Efficiency? Budget? What is your travel style?

A case can be made for both modes. However, tell us more about yourself so we can better answer your question.

HTH

San Diego...
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3. Re: amtrak

A rental car is a great convenience for visiting San Diego and Los Angeles. Even in heavy traffic, it is still faster, more direct, and for 4 persons, cheaper than train+bus.

Assuming a rental car is not an option, Amtrak www.amtrak.com and the FlyAway bus are a safe, scenic (although only a small portion of the trip has scenery)and fairly easy way to get from downtown San Diego to LAX.

birmingham
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4. Re: amtrak

Thank you very much for the information about travelling between San Diego and LAX,our family will consider a car for the journey, but my own reason for enquiring about the train was based upon the fact that i am on holiday and thought because i drive most days to work i would have a rest from driving.

birmingham
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5. Re: amtrak

Thanks for replying,my reasons for the train questios

was based upon having a relaxing holiday and forgetting the car because i drive most days at home.

Also the Journey hopefully would be more pleasent on Amtrak than using the trains back in the UK.

Cheers

birmingham
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6. Re: amtrak

Thank you for your advice-much appreciated, i think we will go for Amtrak we have 5 hours to get to LAX.

Cheers

Washington State
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7. Re: amtrak

There is FlyAway bus service that run between Los Angeles Union Station and LAX every thirty minutes. The transfer could not be easier.

california
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8. Re: amtrak

I'll disagree about the drive from San Diego to LA being faster than the train, based on experience. That service is quite good.

We often had Navy personnel come to meetings in Downtown LA and they MUCH preferred the train to driving.

Chicago, Illinois
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9. Re: amtrak

I just saw your post and since you are not traveling until this month you may get to this... Do NOT drive. That is insane. Take the train. It is a 4 hour trip from downtown San Diego to Los Angeles Union Station and the Fly-away bus is closer (Patsorris Plaza) to the platform than the main waiting room of the station.

Los Angeles
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10. Re: amtrak

I hate the drive from SD to L.A. as it is so unpredictable. You are right in considering the train to avoid a stressfull ending to your holiday

It is easy to transfer from Union Station/Downtown L.A. towards LAX via the Flyaway Bus(just follow the signs)