California road trip in May

11
Found 28th Jan
I’m taking my family to San Francisco in May for 2 weeks and after a 2/3 night stop over I want to hire a RV and drive down the Pacific Coast to San Diego and before returning to San Francisco for our flight home.

I am looking for places to stop over along the way like camping parks and boondocking, any help on this is appreciated like places to stay, dos and don’ts

Wheres best to hire the RV and is there anything to be wary of? Does vehicle excess insurance cover RVs?

Which is the best travel insurance to get?

Another option is to get internal flights to San Diego and pick up a relocation RV (if available)to drop off in San Francisco. Anyone have any experience of doing this kind of thing?

Is there anywhere I can buy discounted 1 day Disneyland tickets?

Any advice on who to book with to go whale watching at Monterrey Bay?

Anyone have experience of day tripping to Tijuana? I’m thinking of crossing the boarder on foot and getting a bus into town.

Any help is most welcome
Community Updates
AskTravel
11 Comments
Have a good look into the cost of hiring an rv. It adds up once you add on kitchen packs, mileage, fuel( expect 10mpg) and extra insurance. My advice would be do it in a car and stay in hotels. The PCH is a stunning trip. It’s not ideal for a rv but it can be done. The rv parks are not cheap either. With a relocation you only get a limited travel time. You can hire a car for two weeks with national or Alamo for about £400 all inclusive.

My advise is don’t rush the Pch. Stop regular to the scenic stops.Make sure you stop off at Nitt witt ridge in Cambria.
I'd check the progress of the repairs to the Pacific Coast Highway. Sections were closed due to landslides.
I'm not sure if it's fully open now or not.

I've been to Tijuana a long time ago. All I can remember was buying a homage Rolex.
Give yourself plenty of time when crossing back into the US.

For a future trip, I'd recommend Yosemite NP and the Mono Lake area.

For San Francisco, I'd recommend crossing the GGB into Marin County and driving up the hillside for classic views of the bridge with the city in the background.
Toll charges apply on the way back.
Wadda28th Jan

Have a good look into the cost of hiring an rv. It adds up once you add on …Have a good look into the cost of hiring an rv. It adds up once you add on kitchen packs, mileage, fuel( expect 10mpg) and extra insurance. My advice would be do it in a car and stay in hotels. The PCH is a stunning trip. It’s not ideal for a rv but it can be done. The rv parks are not cheap either. With a relocation you only get a limited travel time. You can hire a car for two weeks with national or Alamo for about £400 all inclusive.My advise is don’t rush the Pch. Stop regular to the scenic stops.Make sure you stop off at Nitt witt ridge in Cambria.


Derek_Horatio_Shatwell29th Jan

I'd check the progress of the repairs to the Pacific Coast Highway. …I'd check the progress of the repairs to the Pacific Coast Highway. Sections were closed due to landslides.I'm not sure if it's fully open now or not.I've been to Tijuana a long time ago. All I can remember was buying a homage Rolex.Give yourself plenty of time when crossing back into the US.For a future trip, I'd recommend Yosemite NP and the Mono Lake area.For San Francisco, I'd recommend crossing the GGB into Marin County and driving up the hillside for classic views of the bridge with the city in the background.Toll charges apply on the way back.



Thanks for the input. I’m not going to bother with the RV I will go for a Mustang Convertible instead it’s £40 per day and that includes dropping it off at San Diego Airport I will get Questor’s £30 excess cover for insurance. Driving the Golden Gate Bridge is a great idea so on my last day in SF I will collect the car and drive the bridge and check out Muir Woods before driving back over the bridge and cruise SF for an hour or two then head to Monterey for a couple of days.

Youre correct the PCH1 is closed near San Simeon so I will have to double back and take alternative route to Morrow Bay where I’ll stay a couple of days before heading to LA for 4 days (1 full day Disneyland) and then 3 days San Diego.

Its good that I can drop the car off at San Diego Airport for no extra charge because I can just get on a cheap flight to SFO and after 3 hours get my return flight to Manchester.
You may struggle with family luggage in a mustang boot (trunk). You can only get one large and one medium case in there. I have rented two while in the USA. The Camaro is even smaller.

I would get an earlier flight back to SFO. If your delayed you would be screwed. 3 hours is not enough of a buffer in my opinion.

The golden gate is good there’s a couple of places you can park on each side of it to enjoy the view. San Fran is a lovely place. I really enjoyed my time there apart from the cold. It was 6 degrees at the end of April 2015 so I ended up buying a bobble hat from a tourist tat shop.

With the PCH being closed at San Simone you won’t get to visit Nitt Witt Ridge that was one of my favourite places on my trip.
Wadda31st Jan

You may struggle with family luggage in a mustang boot (trunk). You can …You may struggle with family luggage in a mustang boot (trunk). You can only get one large and one medium case in there. I have rented two while in the USA. The Camaro is even smaller. I would get an earlier flight back to SFO. If your delayed you would be screwed. 3 hours is not enough of a buffer in my opinion. The golden gate is good there’s a couple of places you can park on each side of it to enjoy the view. San Fran is a lovely place. I really enjoyed my time there apart from the cold. It was 6 degrees at the end of April 2015 so I ended up buying a bobble hat from a tourist tat shop. With the PCH being closed at San Simone you won’t get to visit Nitt Witt Ridge that was one of my favourite places on my trip.


Thanks for the feedback. Maybe a large hatchback is the way to go with vehicle hire and just get a convertible for a day or 2 for a bit of fun. After further planning I’ve decided against the flight back from LA to SFO. I want to visit Yosemite and think it’s best to go on the last 2 nights of the vacation (the week after Memorial Day) before dropping the hire car off at SFO. We will be biking across Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito and back across on a ferry apparently you can get your money back for the bike hire in the form of a store credit which sounds good.
You will have an amazing trip. I have been to California twice and really enjoyed it both times.

My tip is use National or Alamo (same company but operate separately) for car hire in the USA as all the insurance etc is included so there’s no up-sell at the airport.
Wadda7th Feb

You will have an amazing trip. I have been to California twice and really …You will have an amazing trip. I have been to California twice and really enjoyed it both times. My tip is use National or Alamo (same company but operate separately) for car hire in the USA as all the insurance etc is included so there’s no up-sell at the airport.


I’m not bothered about being offered insurance I am accustomed to it. I just let the hire company ring fence their excess fee on a credit card and pre purchase excess car hire cover for £30. I’m planning the itinerary at the moment, I read that Alcatraz tour is good, have you been? Also I’m wondering if to visit Kings Canyon or Sequoia National Parks as well as Yosemite, do you have any experience of these places, or even Death Valley?
I didn’t get chance to go to the parks but have been to Alcatraz. It’s defiantly worth a visit. I only had a couple of days in SF I wish I had more. Hopefully will get to go again one day.
Wadda30 m ago

I didn’t get chance to go to the parks but have been to Alcatraz. It’s def …I didn’t get chance to go to the parks but have been to Alcatraz. It’s defiantly worth a visit. I only had a couple of days in SF I wish I had more. Hopefully will get to go again one day.


I’m just planning 2 full days in San Francisco maybe I should make it 3. I’m planning 3 nights San Fran, 3 Monterey, 1 Santa Barbara, 3 San Diego, 1 LA, 1 near Kings Canyon and 2 Yosemite. I might still tweak it I want a good balance of city and countryside; my family love nature. My children don’t even want to go to Disneyland.
On itv at 2pm each day this week there is a program about California on with James Martin the chef. I haven’t had chance to watch it yet

all I will say to you is don’t try to drive too much per day and enjoy the trip
Edited by: "Wadda" 12th Feb
Madchester8th Feb

I’m not bothered about being offered insurance I am accustomed to it. I j …I’m not bothered about being offered insurance I am accustomed to it. I just let the hire company ring fence their excess fee on a credit card and pre purchase excess car hire cover for £30. I’m planning the itinerary at the moment, I read that Alcatraz tour is good, have you been? Also I’m wondering if to visit Kings Canyon or Sequoia National Parks as well as Yosemite, do you have any experience of these places, or even Death Valley?


Most of the brokers have no excess in the US anymore, tyres and windscreen damage is different though that’s a different animal. Check coverage just to be sure you are covered. Check the drop off fees as well, normally they are between $250 and 500 and you have to ask about them as the rental companies don’t always mention them.
Post a comment
Avatar
@
    Text

    Top Discussions

    Top Merchants