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AIBU to spend £400+ more to fly rather than drive to get to this holiday destination?

(33 Posts)
Clarabell33 Fri 21-Apr-17 10:39:05

MIL has planned a family holiday and instructed us asked if we would like to join them. We are looking into it...

The holiday is in the UK, but the other end of the country - top to bottom, about 600 miles. It's not a fancy destination and we have a toddler so not going to be particularly relaxing when we get there.

My reasons for flying:
- It's quick! 1.5hrs in the air, about 5hrs total with from leaving home to arriving at accommodation.
- Saves us spending approx 20hrs driving for a weeks' holiday.
- I hate long distance driving - especially when the pay-off is to spend a week with DH's family confused
- DS is only 2 and I don't think it's fair to pen him in his carseat for that long; the alternatives are splitting the drive over 2 days and having lots of long breaks, or driving at night - DS will sleep, the roads will be quieter, but I don't sleep much when DH drives and we would both have to spend a lot of time recovering from no sleep at either end.
- Roadworks. Looks like lots on the route.
- Temperature - air con in car doesn't work well and if it's remotely warm, we will be sweltering.
- I have an intermittent bad back and sciatica, and sitting in a car for hours might not have any effect but if it does, I'm limping around for days with the prospect of another long drive in a few days to help things along.
- If the car breaks down (moderate chance), that's a nightmare to deal with even without factoring in short timescales and cranky toddlers. If the plane is delayed etc, at least we can let DS out of his seat...

DH's reasons for driving:
- He doesn't mind driving long distances (but I will still have to take a turn).
- It's cheaper than flying by at least £300, even factoring in two overnight stops at Travelodge prices.
- We don't have to worry about packing (I always overpack but am getting better every time... so one day I might get it right!).
- Don't need to worry about what we need to bring for DS - will all fit in car.
- We'd have to hire a car if we fly (no option not to) so another £100+ for the week.
- I can pack loads of booze and drink my way through the holiday

I'm sure there are more pros and cons for each side but what do you all think? AIBU to want to spend another £400-500 to make things a lot less unpleasant in my view rather than bookmark a holiday (that I'm not overly keen on already) with a very long drive either end?

Yes, I'd much rather spend the money elsewhere (on a nicer holiday), yes to many similar points... But for the purposes of this AIBU, we can afford it, it's just whether or not to spend it on the relative convenience of flying.

PeaFaceMcgee Fri 21-Apr-17 10:44:34

If you can afford it yanbu. Coming home with such a long drive ahead of you is especially tedious.

I offer myself a test in these circs... Would I accept £500 in cash to drive instead?

blueskyinmarch Fri 21-Apr-17 10:45:27

With small children I think driving is the better option, especially if you can split up the journey with overnight stops. You can stop when you want and take as much stuff with you as you want. That means you can take toys etc for your DS. I would get you car serviced and sorted before you leave though or get a new, reliable one if you can afford it.

PresidentSheCock Fri 21-Apr-17 10:46:18

I would.

MatildaTheCat Fri 21-Apr-17 10:48:25

I would reply that you've looked into it and it doesn't work for you.

Thanks but no thanks. Then go somewhere that you actually want to go.

BarbaraofSeville Fri 21-Apr-17 11:26:54

Is the train an option? You wouldn't have to check in, it may be cheaper than flying, some routes are quicker than driving.

But Peas test is good, you can effectively 'earn' £500 by driving, is that worth it to you (it would be to me). Or have you looked at skyscanner and thought about alternative airports/different days to see if you have the best prices for flying?

Do you have to go? Unless it's a rare opportunity to see the ILs or a desirable destination, it doesn't sound like a great opportunity to see the ILs to be honest? If you want to all meet up on holiday like this, wouldn't somewher halfway that you can all drive to in a day be a fairer option?

But if you do decide to go and drive, I would shortern the time you are with them by making the travel days part of the week, IYSWIM. So instead of them being away a week and you being away 9 days, all be away a week and you just spend the middle 5 days with them.

Callmegeoff Fri 21-Apr-17 12:06:26

Having just got back from a similar journey -Portsmouth to Edinburgh, yanbu. My dc's are older and entertain themselves but its long, boring uncomfortable etc I know we'll always drive due to cost but I can dream .....

If you do fly and hire a car it's worth sorting car insurance before you get the car iyswim. What can seem like a cheap rental is really not once you are forced to take out the rental companies own insurance.

PodgeBod Fri 21-Apr-17 12:09:31

I just wouldn't go and would give the toddler as a reason. It doesn't sound like your heart is in it.

whirlygirly Fri 21-Apr-17 12:13:44

If it's cornwall then I'd definitely fly. The a30 roadworks are an utter ball ache 😖

upperlimit Fri 21-Apr-17 12:18:34

I think I might stick with the car if only so I could put some proper space between me and the outlaws on holiday.

BarbaraofSeville Fri 21-Apr-17 12:20:28

Have you considered traffic? You seem to suggest 10 hours each way for 600 miles, but that may be quite optimistic for holiday traffic.

I've known people take 10 hours or more to get from northern England to Cornwall or South West Wales, which is more like 400 miles.

teaandakitkat Fri 21-Apr-17 12:25:57

I would fly. We have family at the very top of the country and every now and again when I can get a good price we fly to Wick instead of driving. It's worth every penny. Driving home especially is just miserable.

Dh can drive with all the luggage and pick you up at the other end 😄

llangennith Fri 21-Apr-17 12:27:15

teaandkitkat's suggestion is good! Let DH drive with all the stuff and you and toddler fly.

xForsythia Fri 21-Apr-17 12:31:22

I would fly for such a short holiday. You can't do it in one go with a child, it's not fair, so that's at least 3 days wasted on the road.

If you are only going for a week, you really don't need to pack that much! Even including toys

Birdsgottaf1y Fri 21-Apr-17 12:36:37

I'd fly and let him drive.

It's easier on your DS, so your DP is being selfish to not consider that.

My GD would be happy with the I-pad and DVD player, so we would drive, to save the money, it depends on your finances.

user1andonly Fri 21-Apr-17 12:39:28

Dh can drive with all the luggage and pick you up at the other end


Drove from Leeds to Cornwall on year.



happypoobum Fri 21-Apr-17 12:44:32

Why are you going? It sounds a bit shit.

If you have to go then I would definitely fly or get the train. You have a bad back, a toddler, would have to stay at travelodges two nights on the way there and back, and, most importantly, you don't really want to go.

Just don't go, " Thanks but no thanks, that won't work for us."

SpreadYourHappiness Fri 21-Apr-17 12:48:00

I think flying is the way forward. Don't get the train - they're a nightmare for any journey that requires luggage.

ShotsFired Fri 21-Apr-17 12:49:40

What if you left on day 1 of the holiday, took a few days to drive each way, like a mini break in itself, not just pitstops enroute

That would a) save cash; b) make the journey easier and c) "inadvertently" reduce the time you actually have to stay with the MIL!

If not that, then train - sleeper? (having done a long journey sleeper up, day train back, I can safely say the sleeper was an amazing investment)

Or quite randomly, are there any boats which go up the UK coastline that might dock conveniently for you?

thewindisfullofghosts Fri 21-Apr-17 12:56:37

Could you perhaps hire a car from a national chain with outlets at each end of the journey, then drive there and fly back? That way you will save some money, still have a car to get around in but you don't have to dread a long drive on the way back.

I agree with you OP, but if you want a compromise, this could be it. You'd have to watch how much you pack though!

BrieAndChilli Fri 21-Apr-17 13:03:57

We are going to the south of France
We are flying and hiring a car even though it would be slightly cheaper to drive but would take 2 days.
2 days each way in a stuffy car with 3 kids will be hell so we decided to push the budget and fly and then rent a car.

Devorak Fri 21-Apr-17 13:47:57

It all comes down to your income. With a car with poor aircon and a moderate chance it'll break down, I would question that.

I'd be tempted to drive and spend that money on fixing the aircon (which can be expensive) or putting it towards a better car. Having said that, I enjoy driving and hate short-haul flights. I like long-haul flying (work or pleasure) but for the former am in Business class.

How much would it cost to rent a nicer car? It gives you freedom at the other end (because flying needs to include transfers in its costings) and allays many of your worries about travelling in your car.

BarbaraofSeville Fri 21-Apr-17 13:49:53

If your air con is crap it might just need regassing, which can be a DIY job or cost £40/50 from places like Kwik Fit.

Clarabell33 Fri 21-Apr-17 14:13:26

Attendance is a 'pick your battles' situation. We aren't committed yet, still researching, but instead of kneejerk 'hell no' I'm looking into some of the options and DH is doing the same. I'm being enthusiastic and encouraging rather than a killjoy, but if it sadly doesn't look like it'll work out, I won't be shedding a tear wink

I love the idea of flying with DS and DH enjoying the drive on his own! Doubt DH will go for it though. I'd happily get a ferry but doubt there are any on this exact route - we're also doing west to east so it'd need to go all the way round... Will check but suspect it wouldn't be any quicker! It's not a stay-with-MIL situation otherwise stalling tactics would be great. If we had more time, we could make a nice trip of it - or we could just fly, and get there quickly and enjoy it!

ToughItOut Fri 21-Apr-17 14:16:48

I'd drive it. I just did an 11 hour drive on my own with 4 children, for a 4 day holiday and it was fine (youngest is 3). But if i'd had £400 to spare i'd have flown! What about a train? Is that an option?

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