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Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

Chicago, Illinois
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Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

I need a San Simeon-LAX route, please. Speed is of the essence. (I realize that's laughable.) We'll already have done the slow, scenic route from San Francisco.

Thursday-Friday, August 19-20

1. Leave San Simeon/Cambria area around 7:00 pm Thursday and drive for about three hours to where?

2. Leave this stopover at 7:00 or 8:00am on Friday and drive to LAX.

(At airport, ditch the $$$$$ rental car from SFO and get a car we'll use for the next few day in Corona, where our daughter is moving into an apartment.)

3. A route from LAX to to Corona would be great, if you know it.

Estimated travel times would also be appreciated.

Thank you so much. I've been doing searches, but all the advice points toward slow, scenic routes.

Grover Beach...
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1. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

3 hours from San Simeon should get you to Ventura.

Take Highway 1 south (Don't worry.... this part of Highway 1 is straighter and faster than points northward that you will have already passed through) to San Luis Obispo and connect with Highway 101 south.

You will most likely encounter Friday morning traffic to LAX no matter what route you opt for, but Highway 1 from Oxnard (Same area as Ventura) might be the quickest.

Corona del Mar, CA
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2. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

At that time of night I would bite the bullet and drive the extra hour to the LAX area. If you leave Ventura at 7 or 8AM, that "hour drive" become an hour and a half or two hours.

At LAX there are decent hotels like the Four Points by Sheraton, the Marriott, etc.

Santa Monica...
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3. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

Ventura.

But I would go the extra 45 minutes to LA, and stay near LAX or in Santa Monica or Marina del Rey so that you have a stress free morning and don't deal with rush hour morning Friday nightmare traffic.

San Diego...
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4. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

I agree with the above posters, continue all the way to LAX (traffic should be light). Do a search for LAX hotels. Hotels around LAX are actually fairly reasonable and there are a large variety of hotels there. I'm not certain, but I think the Friday morning drive from LAX to Corona (Highways 105 and 91) might not be too bad.

Los Angeles
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5. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

Renting a car at LAX entails many fees and taxes that are not present at off-airport locations. Unless you must return the car to LAX and pick up another one there for some reason, search for an off airport location for your rental company - chances are renting the car for the Corona leg of your journey will be much cheaper if you do that. You can probably still return the car to LAX for no fee with most rental companies as long as the car is returned to one of their locations in the same metro area.

New York City, New...
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6. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

It doesn't seem like a very well thought-out plan. Why would you need to hit LA traffic at the worst time of the morning just to switch up a rental car? And yes, LAX does not seem like the greatest place to put this money-saving plan into motion since they have much higher taxes/fees than other locations where you could switch off the car.

Maybe back-track a bit and tell us more about where you're originally picking up this car, why you need to be at LAX as such a godforsaken hour of the week, etc. There must be a better way. Start over.

Chicago, Illinois
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7. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

Deep breath. Okay, if anybody can tell me how to do this better, I will be eternally grateful.

1. RENTAL CAR: Renting a car in San Francisco, then driving Hwy 1, fnishing the scenic-route-then-Hearst leg by Thursday evening. Then driving to Corona. Flying out of LAX Sunday night.

All the rental car companies I've contacted claim one of three things:

a. Some say I can ONLY drop a car from San Francisco at LAX.

b. Some say I can drop off only at another airport locaton (i.e. ONT or SNA), but it'll cost a pretty (actually, prettier) penny.

c. Some are mysteriously sold out for one-ways from SF (in Aug.)

Note: Keeping the SAME car for the Corona leg is also outrageously expensive. Switching it (which I learned on TA) reduces the daily rate significantly.

2. TIMING: I originally planned to overnight in Cambria Thursday night, but I (perhaps mistakenly) thought we should try to avoid the drive to LA on a Friday. Hence the get-a-head-start-on-Thursday-night scheme.

-I love planning trips, but

-I hate, hate, hate renting cars, and

-I could rent a private Lear jet for less than some of the one-way rental quotes I've been getting, and

-I know nothing about LA or its traffic; I just know I despise driving in Chicago on Fridays, so

-I put myself in your hands.

I

Grover Beach...
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8. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

So, let me get this straight.

Your plan is to leave San Francisco on Thursday, drive down Highway 1, including a Hearst Castle tour and leave the San Simeon area by 7pm?

SF to Hearst Castle via Highway 1 will take at least 7 hours WITHOUT stops. And there is road construction going on in at least 3 areas on the Big Sur coast, which could potentially slow you down more. You're potentially looking at a 13+ hour day with 11 hours sitting in a car watching the scenery pass you by.

I take it you only want to pay for 1 day for the car rental, therefore the hurriedness to get to LA before you hit that 24 hour mark? I don't have a rental car solution for you, but you might want to alter your plan of driving along the coast so your nerves don't get so frazzled or you miss your Hearst tour time because of road work, etc.

Chicago, Illinois
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9. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

I don't think I mentioned when I was leaving SF. The plan WAS to

1. leave SF late Wednesday afternoon and stop in Monterry or Big Sur (just to sleep)

3. drive from there to San Simeon on Thursday. Stop at some look-outs. Do Hearst tour.

4. drive to Corona on Friday - focus one efficiency, not scenery - switching cars on the way

Then I got concerned about the Friday LA traffic, so thought I'd get a head start Thurs night

It would be TWO days of rental car - quotes range from $392 to $838 (!), depending on drop-off location.

However, now my idea just seems foolish. From what y'all say, I'm thinking that even Wed afternoon to Friday noon-ish is not long enough for that drive. The four of us can fly Southwest SFO-to-SNA for less than $392. I guess I'll give up the Hwy 1 idea. Always wanted to do it, but perhaps another day...

Thanks for the advice.

Grover Beach...
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10. Re: Please Get Me from San Simeon to LAX in One Piece!

No, no, no! You can do it!

Here's how:

Plan on this being just a road trip. No adventures on the side, just taking in the sights along the way. My first trip down Highway 1 was just that. Only stopped to grab a quick bite, etc.

I don't know what kind of car you're renting, but that rental price you quoted is ridiculous! Are you renting from the airport at SFO or from within the city? Rates will be cheaper in town than from the airport, BTW.

Since you want to spend a night in Monterey, this gives you time to drive down through Big Sur to Hearst Castle. The drive is about 3 hours straight. If you left Monterey by 9:30 am, that puts you in San Simeon around 12:30 pm. If you take a 1:00 pm tour at Hearst Castle, you could be on the road for LA by 3:30 pm. 4 hours to LA from Hearst Castle and you don't have to worry about finding an in between place for Thursday night.

Does that sound more doable for you?

Edited: 07 June 2010, 00:36