Question about traveling home

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by RogersCO'19, Apr 6, 2015.

  1. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    So I know its a few months out but I was thinking about putting away money for traveling home During Thanksgiving and Christmas. My question here is, are we allowed to rent cars and drive home or do we have to fly? I live in Alabama if that distance makes a different.
     
  2. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    Rogers, how old are you? Unless you are traveling on military business, good luck renting a car if you are under 25. Generally, you might expect to leave USAFA either late Tues night, or sometimes, on Wednesday. My kids had to be back by 7 pm on Monday. Most of Alabama is a pretty long drive from USAFA... If you don't want to afford to fly, why not just stay in CO and ask your sponsor family if they will host you?
     
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  3. zachtx

    zachtx Member

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    You are allowed to drive if you so chose, but there is some ORM involved, and I think you are only allowed to drive around 8 hours a day if you are alone.
     
  4. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    There are some rental car companies out here that let 18+ cadets rent at a discounted rate and drop cars off on base, although I'm sure there's some limit to how far you can take the car away from the Springs. I know a lot of cadets have used rentals to get to the mountains, Denver, etc, on long weekends. I actually think it's a pretty good deal.

    The issue you're going to run into is extended driving regulations the Academy has. If you're driving alone, you can't drive more than 8 hours a day, and it's not much more if you're driving with one or more other people. Driving to Alabama (20-ish hours, right?) would probably take three days or so, not to mention the costs of gas/lodging along the way. At that point, you'll spend half your break driving, and probably would still spend a ton of money.

    You can get in some pretty serious trouble if you violate the extended driving limits and are in an accident-I've seen it happen here. Let me know if any of this doesn't make sense or if I can provide more information.
     
  5. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I'm only 18, I didn't think about the age during renting and I would like to go home.

    Yea, I'm pretty sure it is like 20 hours. I guess I'll just save now and hopefully I'll have enough to fly because its going to cost me 5 or 6 hundred dollars to do so and I wanted to rent a car for home since I don't own my own but that adds about another 300. If I could drive 2 days I'd save money. But I understand our safety is important.
     
  6. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    To reiterate though, age isn't an obstacle to renting a car when you're a cadet. Local companies make exceptions for cadets.
     
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  7. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Thank you for the info, I'll just start saving money to fly. Even if I can drive, the extra money won't hurt.
     
  8. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Don't forget to look into this old technology called railroads. They may fill the bill for you, or not. Or even the somewhat newer technology called buses... it's how Jack Reacher gets around.
     
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  9. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Those may be much much longer than a car ride
     
  10. momxthree

    momxthree New Member

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    Rogers--Not sure what part of Alabama you are from, but you can get a reasonable flight out of Denver to Nashville, Birmingham, or New Orleans on Southwest Airlines. You can get a shuttle from the Academy to Denver for a reasonable price or catch a ride with a friend. Make the shuttle reservation through Outdoor Recreation.
     
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  11. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Thank you for that info
     
  12. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I did more looking and it Looks like I can fly into and out of Atlanta for about 300 and spend about 150 on a rental and I'd just have to travel 3 hours by car. Thanks for all the info guys!
     
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  13. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Yes indeed... but they may be cheaper than a flight. Everything is balancing trade-offs. I would look at them just to say I did my due diligence.
     
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  14. ab11

    ab11 Member

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    Isn't travel home for Thanksgiving and Christmas supposed to be free for cadets? I.e. covered by Air Force?
     
  15. buffalo

    buffalo USAFA 2013

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    Nope
     
  16. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    do not make travel plans until USAFA tells you your dates.


    travel plans covered by the AirForce??? Never heard of such a thing. It used to be, back in the day, that cadets couldn't even go home for the first two years
     
  17. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I haven't made any plans because I know things will change, I just wanted to gauge what I need to start saving because at the moment I have a job so travel would be a good thing to put money away for.
     
  18. 3boysmother

    3boysmother New Member

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    You will receive a paycheck as a cadet and your pay is slightly higher the months you would be travelling home. My cadet spends a lot of his salary eating out. Stick to meals at Mitch's and you'll be able to afford to fly home!
     
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  19. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    The great part of Southwest... No change fees!
     
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  20. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I didn't know they raise it those months, thanks for that knowledge.
    And I didn't know that! I don't fly much
     

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