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Seattle Vancouver Road Trip Tips!

(17 Posts)
PenOrPencil Mon 23-Dec-19 17:40:03

We are planning to visit friends in Seattle and Vancouver in the summer holidays and drive around for a bit.
Who did you book your road trip with? The Trailfinders quote is eye watering!
What are your must dos?

OP’s posts: |
PenOrPencil Mon 23-Dec-19 17:40:56

Oops, forgot to say we’re 2 adults and 2 teenagers.

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RusholmeRuffian Mon 23-Dec-19 19:47:52

I do a roadtrip in the US every year and I have never booked through a travel agent. Just book it all yourself online. I use skyscanner for flights, for accommodation and for ideas.

SpiritInTheNight Mon 23-Dec-19 22:14:04

We got the train between Vancouver and Seattle, it was brilliant and a huge amount cheaper than paying to hire a car one way and take it over the border!

lovelyupnorth Tue 24-Dec-19 06:50:09

We did west Canada this summer. Didn’t book through anyone. Cost us £5k for flights, car hire, accommodation, food and activities- including whale watching, white water rafting etc. Family of 4. Mixture of accommodation.

But then we don’t to travel agents / tour operators.

Ricekrispie22 Tue 24-Dec-19 13:17:29

Got the train from Seattle to Vancouver last summer and it was beautiful.

PenOrPencil Tue 24-Dec-19 19:33:26

Roadtrippers looks fab, @RusholmeRuffian. And we will definitely consider taking the train, @SpiritInTheNight and @Ricekrispie22 - good call.

I am so excited, will spend most of the Christmas holiday planning!

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Marshalsea Tue 24-Dec-19 19:35:36

Vancouver island, tofino is my favourite place in the world.

FanSpamTastic Tue 24-Dec-19 19:39:20

Try The American Road Trip Company. here

We used them for a California trip. They found lovely hotels - not chains - and listened to the criteria we said were important - things to do for teenagers etc. You can give them a budget idea and they will work with that.

BubblesBuddy Thu 26-Dec-19 17:51:06

Buy a Lonely Planet guide that covers the Pacific North West. There are lots of options for a road trip and you wouldn’t want to miss the national parks. You can plan this yourself but some accommodation will be expensive due to high season. It would also depend what your standards are! Check where you can drop a car off and then get the ferry to Vancouver.

Vancouver Island is 400 miles long so factor in the distances for driving if you are going to do that.

lifeisgoodagain Thu 26-Dec-19 17:59:23

Just book a car through enterprise, entering via Vancouver is best, nicer airport. Drive i5 to Seattle for the return trip go via bamebridge island, the Olympic peninsula and ferry to Victoria then ferry to Vancouver. If you want specifics or hotel suggestions pm me. I did it last year and used to live there

Cotonshaded Sun 29-Dec-19 18:57:28

Watching with interest as this is exactly what we are planning (currently thinking San Fran and area to Vancouver for us!)...had never thought of getting the train though so already looking forward to planning it all out...

SpiritInTheNight Mon 06-Jan-20 16:12:20

The train is so easy, my only tip is to turn up early! You don’t get pre booked seats, they assign them just before you go through customs, but even if you don’t get water side seats there are loads of places to stand/sit elsewhere.

On the trip down we saw so much wildlife including bald eagles!

Hatchee Fri 17-Jan-20 20:26:25

I second the tip about taking the train for at least part of it so you don't have to pay all the extra fees that come with picking up a rental car in one country and dropping it off in the other.
In terms of what to see and do, the San Juan Islands are spectacular. They're in Washington but closer to Vancouver. There are lots of ferries to them, mostly car ferries. You can get a direct ferry from Vancouver or take the train to Bellingham, the first stop in the US, and either rent a car there or take the ferry.

Beebumble2 Sun 26-Jan-20 15:32:14

We did the trip as part of a Calgary, Vancouver Seattle trip. We took the ferry from Vancouver Island, but had to get off North of the PortDouglas border crossing to drive down to Seattle.
Is a lovely, easy drive. We stopped at White Rock which is a beautiful seaside town with a British vibe, fish and chip restaurants.

Hart1eyHare Sun 26-Jan-20 15:58:54

We’ve done it as had family in both at one time. We preferred the US part so I’d arrange more at that end. We spent an amazing time in a log cabin on a beach with a fire pit on Orcas Island one year. Love Seattle and Pike Place Market), Mount Rainier, Olympic Park, white water rafting....

Do it yourself it’s easy, even easier for you as you have accommodation sorted.

Redrosesandsunsets Sun 26-Jan-20 16:06:02

Also not sure if it would cause confusion when booking but there’s also a Vancouver, USA, by Portland. It’s just down the coast from Vancouver BC (Canada).

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