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Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

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Vancouver Canada
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Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

I will be comming to MN for my first time in Late August.

And am deciding on what location would be better for me for 3 days.... Downtown or near MOA near the Train station ?

I will have a car rented and will need to park it overnight , so do most hotels in downtown charge for parking? IF so how much should I budget for parking per day?

The first day & night(Monday) I will probably spend checking out the Downtown area.

Second day I want to spend at Valley Fair and its water park as well so will be all day there I guess.

The last day (Wed)I will check out the MOA and then fly out at night at 9PM

Minneapolis...
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1. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

HOtels downtown do charge for parking. It depends on hotel, but the W for example (one of the more upscale hotels) charges $30 a day for valet. That would be the high end.

Now if you just do a little reserach, you could find a ramp near the hotel of your choice and park there and walk to the hotel.

That's if you want to stay downtown, which offers more sightseeing and dining and nightlife opporutnities. There is very little in the way of dining by the Mall of America and no nightlife at all. And no sightseeing aside from the mall itself.

However, parking is generally free for hotels near the mall and the rates are generally lower.

With you being in town for three days and spending only one day downtown, you could stay near the mall and take the light rail downtown to explore.

A hotel location in east Bloomington, near the mall, would be a good base for your activities. But be warned, the area itself is dull -- very few restaurants, nothing to see. It's just ideally situated to access the mall, hop the train to downtown and then drive via I-494 west to Highway 169 south to Valleyfair.

And one more thing -- you mentioned near the mall and the train station. There is a light rail station at the mall. But there are also stations downtown. There is not one main station for the light rail route/

Minneapolis
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2. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

My 2 cents -

ditch renting the car and stay downtown.

You can lightrail it from airport / mall, to downtown and back.

Public transportation might be able to get you to ValleyFair from downtown -

www.MetroTransit.org

or just rent a car for a day from the multiple vendors downtown (not at airport). There are three all near the downtown Hilton.

So much to see and do downtown - day or night.

If you were just comign for the mall and doing the mall everyday, consider staying by the mall.

Minneapolis MN
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3. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

There isn't any public transit to Valleyfair.

My advice would be to spend the first night downtown. Take the light rail from the airport. There's plenty to see and do downtown that you won't need a car.

Since day 2 of your trip would be at Valleyfair and you'd be heading out to MOA the next day, pick up a rental car from a place downtown, head out to Valleyfair, and then to a hotel in Bloomington near the MOA for the night.

Day 3 of your trip, take the rental to MOA, have your fun there, and then drive it to the airport drop-off.

Minneapolis
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4. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

Looks like Bus Route #490 would get you from Minneapolis to Shakopee.

From there just a quick taxi to ValleyFair, or tranfer via #496/#498.

www.MetroTransit.org

or call the MetroTransit helpline

Dallas, Texas
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5. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

Others make good and valid points there will be less options for dining and little to no nightlife by the Mall (and you'll need to weigh out the value to you on that), though if you don't mind spending about 35-45 minutes on the Light Rail Train, it may be worth considering staying by the Mall in your case. I could foresee one staying by the Mall, not have to pay downtown parking and deal with downtown traffic, and just take the train downtown to see sights in the city. Then, in the evening/night, take the train back. There is even a large parking ramp just for the train and commuters near the Mall if you didn't want to park in the Mall itself. You could park there to take the train and return back to your hotel - in this way you won't be hostage to a hotel shuttle or have to figure out a taxi at the end of the night to get back to your hotel.

Also, given you will be going to Valleyfair, by staying near the Mall it puts you closer to VF and, again, avoids traffic and some driving. Your locations form something of an odd-shaped triangle with the Mall sort of in the middle, thus forms something of a base for you and your locations.

If you do decide to stay downtown, I would follow others suggestions to not rent a car until you are ready to go to Valleyfair, and then rent from a downtown location. Just use the Light Rail Train to get to and from downtown and the Mall, renting a car only when ready to go to Valleyfair. One advantage here - besides some convenience of not having to worry about where to park and get around downtown is savings. You'll save not only on parking but also, by renting downtown versus the airport, you won't pay the airport surcharge taxes on car rentals - though who knows if the rental rates by the companies themselves are similar.

Houston, Texas
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6. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

Just an add-on to the comments about public bus to Valleyfair, it can be done - see here:

metrotransit.org/images/routes/496S.pdf

Connects with BlueXPress with limited schedule.

7. Re: Your Advice needed on Hotel Location

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