We just returned from a trip to the USA. We spent 7 days in New York, 3 days in Washington DC and 2 days in LA. Our budget did not allow us to stay in anything above a 2 star hotel. In New York we stayed at the Super 8 Hotel near Times Square. We were rather worried about the condition of this place, as the reviews about this hotel seem to be split between good to outright disgusting. When we entered the room to our horror the first thing we saw was a cockroach. We never saw another one during our 7 days stay. The room was small, adequately furnished with a shower and toilet. The heating was turned up so high we had to turn on the air-conditioning to cool down the room to a liveable temperature. Breakfast was included in the price which included a reasonable selection bagels, doughnuts, fruit, and drinks. The only draw back is the canteen type of dining room with small little tables and at times standing room only to eat the breakfast. The hotel itself is not all that clean. The staircase has not seen a broom or a duster for a long time. And about the bead bugs in some of the reviews, yes there were bed bugs in my bed; I still suffer from an itchy back.
New York did live up to our expectation. It is easy to get around in this big City. The 7-day Metro Card is a must and a bargain at $21.00. We also bought a New York City Pass, which gives you access to 6 attractions at a discounted rate. Since we were in New York out of season and never had to que up anywhere we could have bought individual tickets and probably done it cheaper this way. We found a few 2 for one offers and the Guggenheim museum had a reduced entry fee because 2 floors were closed for visitors, which was disappointing, also the Intrepid offered a reduced entry fee because the USS Growler Submarine was also closed for visitors. If you are thinking of buying electronic gadgets do not buy anything from stores around Times Square. The will rip you off big time. We felt safe in New York at all times. Be sure you are bringing with you a pair of comfortable shoes to wear, as you will be walking a lot in this City.
We took the Greyhound bus to Washington DC where we spent 3 days. We stayed at the Double Tree Suites at Foggy Bottom. This is a very nice location only a few steps from the Metro. Of course we visited all the war memorials and a lot of museums, which are free to visit. Unfortunately 3 days is not enough if you really want to get involved.
We flew to LA where the weather was horrible; we decided to cut our visit short and return home early.
It was an interesting holiday but besides the nice memories I would not return to the USA again. I find that you are constantly being ripped off. The hotels are expensive, the quoted prices do not include taxes which adds extra dollars, and on top of all that the guest hast to chip in with tips to anyone and everyone who does a service for you. In my country, Australia where the living standard is equal or higher than the USA the living costs are cheaper and every worker is paid a reasonable wage, no tipping is required. I also found the constant begging a turn off. This was particular rampant in Washington.