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Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

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Kansas City
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Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

I am trying to decide if we should fly into Key West OR fly into Miami, rent a car and then drive into Key West.

It's alot cheaper to fly into Miami than it is Key West but didn't know how the drive was from there and if it's worth saving the money. After the car rental, gas and parking fee at the hotel it may not be cheaper after all.

Anyone have any insight?

Also how long does the drive take from Maimi to KW?

Thanks :)

Thanks!

Key West, Florida
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2,251 posts
24 reviews
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1. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

On a good day, the drive from MIA to Key West is 3 1/2 to 4 hours, depending on the traffic. Once you get to Key West, lose the car!! Drop it off at the airport and grab a cab over to where ever it is that you are staying. You won't need it anyway. It's a beautiful, beautiful drive and will not seem like it is that long at all! Driving BACK to MIA is another story all together. As stated in previous post,s we usually fly into Ft. Lauderdale, make the leisurely drive down through the Keys, drop off the car, and then we fly HOME from Key West. Can not stomach the drive back up to the mainland after a week in Key West.

On the other hand, if you only have a very limited amount of time, by all means fly directly into KW and save the time.

South Florida...
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10,820 posts
86 reviews
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2. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

I agree with Randi. The drive it just so beautiful and there are some really great places to stop. For me the drive it part of the vacation, a fun part.

Grand Rapids mi
Destination Expert
for South Haven
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1,744 posts
43 reviews
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3. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

scan down this page of posts and you will see the same topic (from FLL...but no difference).....

Naperville, Illinois
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3,165 posts
12 reviews
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4. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

"Once you get to Key West, lose the car!! Drop it off at the airport and grab a cab over to where ever it is that you are staying. You won't need it anyway."

As long as you are staying in old town you won't need a car. If you are staying on North Roosevelt or by the airport you will need one.

Los Angeles
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4,523 posts
49 reviews
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5. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

Question:

There are at least 6 car rental places at MIA (Enterprise, Avis, Hertz, Budget, Alamo and National) plus maybe more.

Will each of those businesses have a place where you can drop the car off when you get to KW?

Or will only certain companies allow you to do that?

I've been searching rates for 1 week's rentals, and haven't tried the 1 or 2 day thing yet.

Marathon, Florida
Destination Expert
for Marathon, Islamorada
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14,693 posts
33 reviews
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6. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

Without stops, which you should do, it's 3 hrs to KW from MIA. You NEED to do this drive once in your life, it's beautiful!!!! full of things to see and do, even worth a nights stay in the Keys before Key West.

And do it in the daylight hours. Night time is dark and boring.

Naperville, Illinois
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3,165 posts
12 reviews
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7. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

Orion, when you plug in one way with a EYW drop off in your search, only the car rental companies that have a office in Key West and allow one way rentals will show up. Most have locations at the airport, some (Alamo) on N. Roosevelt.

JENSEN BEACH
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10,752 posts
51 reviews
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8. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

I would agree with a couple of things....ONLY if you arrive by early aft into FLL is the drive a terrific one. You really need to allow at a min of 4 hours in daylight to enjoy this trip! We like to stop and enjoy things along the way so it's more like 5 or 6 for us and we love it. If you don't get in until later I would fly right to Key West. Also depends on how long you have to enjoy the keys. If you have a wk I would do the drive at least one way, coming or going. Definitely lose the car while on Key West at least after one day. If you decide to fly into and out of Key West, rent a car for at least a day to visit the middle keys...well worth it.

Berwick, Maine
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1,339 posts
2 reviews
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9. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

The Keys road is a slow and beautiful drive and if you've never done it before, you need to take in eeverything it has to offer at least once in your life.

Buster

Philadelphia, PA
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784 posts
16 reviews
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10. Re: Fly into Key West OR Miami and drive down?

While there are interesting stops along the way, I find KW so much more interesting that I prefer to pass them by for more time in KW unless I'm staying a week or more. Also, I may be the exception here that does not find the drive so wonderful. Parts of it are pretty cool (crossing the bigger bridges for example and I would suggest doing it once in your lfe), but most of it looks very similar and unremarkable.

For the vast majority of our visits we have flown into KW so we could totally avoid the need for a car. However, when the price differential was really huge, we drove.

We always rent bikes in KW and have them reserved in advance and waiting for us at our guest house. What I have done when we drove, was drive to our guest house, drop off my wife and our luggage, check in, throw one bike into the back of the rental car, drive to the airport and lock the bike up just outside the rental return area, return the car, and ride the bike back to our old town guest house. Reversing the process on the way home. Cuts out 2 cab fares for 2 people and gets me exercise and an enjoyable bike ride. You just need to make sure you have a car with fold down rear seats to fit the bike, since KW bike rentals usually do not have quick release wheels.