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Driving very very far

RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
edited October 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
Alright so after years and years, I have finagled myself a car. It's up in Washington DC. I am flying up to get it and driving it back to Florida. These parts of the plan are already set in stone. They are not changing. My flight is booked, events are progressing etc etc

Now for the meat of the situation. I will be driving it back with the previous owner's plates on it and then mailing them back to him later. I assume he needs to turn them into his DMV or whatever. I'm guessing I'll need insurance of my own to drive it down here.

I'm looking for any other suggestions as to what to do for this whole shindig. I'm stopping off in a motel during the night, no chance of doings an all nighter

I need PRESSING suggestions, such as things to make sure to do to not end up in jail or sued or dead.

and I need suggestions to make the trip easier if needed

Raneados on
Dubh wrote: »
Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
«1

Posts

  • ArtonosArtonos Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I would make sure to not get pulled over with another guys plates on the car your driving.

    Something I found helps on long drives. Have something to snack on and to keep your hands moving when you start zoning out or getting tired. Drinking something also helps, but then you have to pee.

  • KalTorakKalTorak Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Audiobooks and podcasts are the best things in the world for long drives.

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I plan on using each and every rest stop to take breaks

    also is that plate thing such a big deal? I have the guy's phone number and info so I can verify who's car it is

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    As long as the guy isn't a douche and doesn't call and report the car stolen as soon as you leave, there should be no problems.

    Just drive safe and stay awake. I get drowsy after about two hours of continuous driving, so it's pull over, 15-20 mins of vigorous excersize (jog twice around the block, or up and down the road), a drink and maybe a snack and then back to it. Candy you can eat slowly is good, some Werthers or barley sugars or something like that you can suck on may help.

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  • BarcardiBarcardi All the Wizards Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    ive driven across the country 5 times and from Washington to San Diego 5 times. and more if you count when i was a kind with my parents. DC to Flordia is about 2 days, 3 if you want to not get pulled over (and you should do this in the south with a foreign license plate).


    Here are some suggestions:

    First off get some sort of check up on the car before you get it signed over... unless you know who you bought it from and they are your grandmother or something.

    Be sure you have your car insurance info with you, be sure the car is clean when you start off or it will be a shithole when you end off, be sure to bring an emergency credit card, be ready to spend 50-100$ a night in a hotel, but no more.

    Got to AAA and buy/ask for a trip tick. Its basically a map that gives you direct and unfuckupable directions. The bonus is that it also tells you what roads are under construction and you can plan around them.

    Get a small water cooler, fill with sandwiches and drinks. DO NOT stop all over mcdonalds and such as you wont be able to sleep well if your body isnt normally used to fast foods. I made this mistake once after being a health nut for about a year. Also drinks are cheaper if you buy/store them in bulk.

    Leave early, around 5 after you stay in a hotel. Don't stay in cities but go the extra 10-15 miles and get a nice hotel in the suburbs wherever you stop. But be sure you are staying in a nice suburb and not the ghetto.

    Get some good BBQ in the Carolinas, ask where to go, hell if you get pulled over ask the cop where to go... but you probably wont be so don't worry about it.

    and most important of all, Book Tapes. Go to your local library and get a book tape or 3. If you pick something good it will make the trip incredibly easy to deal with. Even if it is a book you have already read a book even consider those. They are especially different if you havnt heard them before but you have read them. Hell, i have the dark tower, the lotr, and the harry potter series and even though i have heard/read them all they are still worth having because the readers are so perfect.

    Also take this chance to disconnect from the internet, dont bring a laptop.

    Dont buy a skin flick at a hotel, they are far too expensive and most hotels have cinimax/hbo anyway.

    If you are really worried about it bring a friend along.



    how did you come across this car? what type is it? how many miles?

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    First off get some sort of check up on the car before you get it signed over... unless you know who you bought it from and they are your grandmother or something.
    It's in very decent shape. My mom's boyfriend's son's car. I've met him, he's a decent and intelligent dude
    Be sure you have your car insurance info with you, be sure the car is clean when you start off or it will be a shithole when you end off, be sure to bring an emergency credit card, be ready to spend 50-100$ a night in a hotel, but no more.
    I figured that price on the room a night. Will make sure the info is with me. The car will be egtting a good once over for cleanliness and I always have my credit card on me

    Got to AAA and buy/ask for a trip tick. Its basically a map that gives you direct and unfuckupable directions. The bonus is that it also tells you what roads are under construction and you can plan around them.
    I will look into this

    Get a small water cooler, fill with sandwiches and drinks. DO NOT stop all over mcdonalds and such as you wont be able to sleep well if your body isnt normally used to fast foods. I made this mistake once after being a health nut for about a year. Also drinks are cheaper if you buy/store them in bulk.
    I'm not taking a cooler. I'm not a terribly healthy eater to begin with and I have the stomach of an eating contest champion. I set aside money to kick around on some food places
    Leave early, around 5 after you stay in a hotel. Don't stay in cities but go the extra 10-15 miles and get a nice hotel in the suburbs wherever you stop. But be sure you are staying in a nice suburb and not the ghetto.
    Sounds good
    Get some good BBQ in the Carolinas, ask where to go, hell if you get pulled over ask the cop where to go... but you probably wont be so don't worry about it.
    I do love BBQ

    and most important of all, Book Tapes. Go to your local library and get a book tape or 3. If you pick something good it will make the trip incredibly easy to deal with. Even if it is a book you have already read a book even consider those. They are especially different if you havnt heard them before but you have read them. Hell, i have the dark tower, the lotr, and the harry potter series and even though i have heard/read them all they are still worth having because the readers are so perfect.
    I'll look into it but I was going to make some CDs
    like 20 CDs

    Also take this chance to disconnect from the internet, dont bring a laptop.
    Don't even own one
    Dont buy a skin flick at a hotel, they are far too expensive and most hotels have cinimax/hbo anyway.
    I don't jerk it in rented rooms. That's weird
    If you are really worried about it bring a friend along.
    Not a possibility

    how did you come across this car? what type is it? how many miles?
    mom's boyfriend's son's that he doesn't want. 2005 Nissan Elantra. New tires. 40K miles. took in for a full service right after getting the tires

    edit WHAT THE HELL

    HYUNDAI

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I'll be fine on whatever food

    for example: I just ate a large pizza by myself with extra cheese, some jalepenos, some pepperoni and some green pepper at 11:30 at night

    my stomach is hard to irritate




    ALSO I am actually a bus driver. I spend 9+ hours behind the wheel daily

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • RUNN1NGMANRUNN1NGMAN Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Um, this might be a dumb question, but how are you going to insure the car if it's not registered to you? Whatever you do, don't get in an accident or I guarantee this car will quickly become the most expensive one in the planet.

  • Seattle ThreadSeattle Thread King of the Forest Camphor TreeRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    If you're buying the car, the current owner should transfer the title over to you, so the plates don't matter for shit. Unless the DMV over there does things grossly different from up here, the whole act of mailing the plates back sounds very sketchy to me.

    Also, you can never have enough albums/audiobooks. If you think you're going overboard, bring a few more. Better to have many that aren't played than to have few that are overplayed.

    e: it had better be the car in your sig.

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I believe the title is getting transferred very soon.

    I'm not very Up to date on how car ownership works

    never owning one and all

    but I do appreciate all the help

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • JigrahJigrah Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Whenever I do long drives (usually I go straight through though) I pick up a bottle of instant coffee crystals and just munch on those for a boost of caffeine.

    It works pretty well, and tastes better then cold coffee.

    Spoiler:
  • Seattle ThreadSeattle Thread King of the Forest Camphor TreeRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Aha. http://dmv.dc.gov/serv/plates/surrender.shtm

    So he has to transfer his tags over to his new car. Chances are that it's cheaper than getting new tags. Disregard my last post, then.

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    he's not getting a new car for a while

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • Shark_MegaByteShark_MegaByte Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Raneados wrote: »
    2005 Nissan Elantra
    :...::?:

    Nissan Sentra, or Hyundai Elantra?

    If Nissan Elantra was what you were told, you might want to fact-check all the other details to make sure other stuff wasn't mixed up too.

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    what the fuck

    I did NOT type Nissan


    Hyundai Elantra

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • ZeonZeon Registered User
    edited October 2008
    DO NOT transfer or surrender the plates before you leave, if you dont have to. You can insure a car you dont own, a lot of small places that loan out cars (bodyshops, mechanics, etc) will make you transfer insurance to a car you dont own before you can drive it. This is not a big deal. You definately want the car to be registered and insured while youre driving it back. Driving an unregistered car across state lines with illegal plates attached is a big, big fine and theyll probably tow/impound the car.

    What you want to do is have him sign everything over to you, but not actually go to a DMV until you get back to your state. You need to register the car where you live anyway, so registering it in washington and then again in florida a few days later is pointless (possibly, see below). If you get pulled over, tell the cop he let you borrow the car. Make sure he will corroborate this story if contacted.

    Although, you may want to check with your state licensing office to make sure they will allow you to transfer the vehicle into your name with an out of state registration. If fairly sure you can, but ive heard of a few places that want you to transfer it into your name in the state it came from first, before youre allowed to transfer it to another state. If you have to do this, be prepared to waste about 150 bucks on new plates you will only use for 3 days. But its better than the alternative of having to go back to washington just to transfer the car.

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  • INeedNoSaltINeedNoSalt Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    my dad swears by red bulls during distance drives

    sometimes you just gotta do a thing
  • MonoxideMonoxide Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited October 2008
    my dad swears by red bulls during distance drives

    Not always a good idea

    For me, energy drinks work for the first 30 minutes or so and then I just start to crash. Some people do say it helps, but it just makes me even more tired than before I drank it.

  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Monoxide wrote: »
    my dad swears by red bulls during distance drives

    Not always a good idea

    For me, energy drinks work for the first 30 minutes or so and then I just start to crash. Some people do say it helps, but it just makes me even more tired than before I drank it.

    This is my experience as well. The small amount (well, not small) of caffeine in a large soda is usually enough to keep me awake, as is needing to pee after drinking it.

    I'll second the book-on-tape idea. Most people don't realize this, but for long-distance driving talk seems to work better than music for keeping awake. You pay more attention to it, or something. I usually go for either news, comedy, or an audiobook.

  • An-DAn-D Content Editor RaleighRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Audiobooks and podcasts are the best things in the world for long drives.



    This. Get some 'This American Life' and you'll be good to go.

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  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic I've Done Worse Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Raneados wrote: »
    I plan on using each and every rest stop to take breaks

    also is that plate thing such a big deal? I have the guy's phone number and info so I can verify who's car it is

    I'm not positive how you're going to work this out. For you to insure the car you'll need to own it and have it registered in your name...with plates.

    What I think would work is for you to drive on his insurance. So long as he gives you permission to drive the car you're covered by it.

    This would be a little weird depending on how you set up the terms of the sale though. While you were driving back it would need to still by owned by him (which it needs to be if it's got the old plates on it anyways.) The proper way to do this probably involves calling your local DMV and finding out how to handle it.

    As for more practical stuff I find books on tape a huge positive. You've already said the car was recently serviced so you're good there. If you get tired pull over and rest a little. Try not to drive tired, it really isn't worth it. At the same time try to stop only when you need to, frequent stops will really kill your progress.

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  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Stopping at every rest stop isn't really necessary. You need to stop when you start to feel tired/exhausted. Stretch your legs, have a cup of coffee, get back on the road.

    Everyone seems to eat fast food when traveling, but fruit or whole grains are going to give you longer-lasting energy. Put this together with some caffeine to act as a catalyst, and you should be fine.

  • INeedNoSaltINeedNoSalt Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    mcdermott wrote: »
    Monoxide wrote: »
    my dad swears by red bulls during distance drives

    Not always a good idea

    For me, energy drinks work for the first 30 minutes or so and then I just start to crash. Some people do say it helps, but it just makes me even more tired than before I drank it.

    This is my experience as well. The small amount (well, not small) of caffeine in a large soda is usually enough to keep me awake, as is needing to pee after drinking it.

    I'll second the book-on-tape idea. Most people don't realize this, but for long-distance driving talk seems to work better than music for keeping awake. You pay more attention to it, or something. I usually go for either news, comedy, or an audiobook.

    This is fair, I don't do much power-driving myself so I don't have much first-hand experience.

    sometimes you just gotta do a thing
  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    well I have all of sat and sunday to make a little below 900 miles

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Raneados wrote: »
    well I have all of sat and sunday to make a little below 900 miles
    That's pretty leisurely, especially if you drive for a living.

    I've done 750 miles in a day without a problem, though it's a very long day.

  • DrFrylockDrFrylock Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Stopping at every rest stop isn't really necessary. You need to stop when you start to feel tired/exhausted. Stretch your legs, have a cup of coffee, get back on the road.

    The best thing to do if you get tired while driving is to pull over, grab a snack (fast food, quick stop market, whatever) and then start driving again. Breaking the monotony is a good thing.

    If you know where the midpoint of your trip will be, go to priceline.com and bid for a hotel room there in advance. You won't be able to pick the specific hotel but will be able to pick the area (or areas) it'll be in. 9 times out of 10 you can get an awesome room for $50 that is about 10x better than a sleazebag motel. I once got 3 nights at the Hyatt in Santa Clara (which goes for like $200+ a night) for a grand total of $150 plus taxes for all three nights.

    Spoiler:
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    DrFrylock wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Stopping at every rest stop isn't really necessary. You need to stop when you start to feel tired/exhausted. Stretch your legs, have a cup of coffee, get back on the road.
    The best thing to do if you get tired while driving is to pull over, grab a snack (fast food, quick stop market, whatever) and then start driving again. Breaking the monotony is a good thing.

    If you know where the midpoint of your trip will be, go to priceline.com and bid for a hotel room there in advance. You won't be able to pick the specific hotel but will be able to pick the area (or areas) it'll be in. 9 times out of 10 you can get an awesome room for $50 that is about 10x better than a sleazebag motel. I once got 3 nights at the Hyatt in Santa Clara (which goes for like $200+ a night) for a grand total of $150 plus taxes for all three nights.
    This may just be me, but if I have a trip like that, I know that the second day is going to feel way longer than the first day, so I'd probably do, like, 550 miles day 1, then 350 day 2, just for the extra time to chill before Monday.

  • the wookthe wook Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Raneados wrote: »
    well I have all of sat and sunday to make a little below 900 miles
    That's pretty leisurely, especially if you drive for a living.

    I've done 750 miles in a day without a problem, though it's a very long day.

    yeah it is. i've done albuquerque to san diego in one shot a number of times, and that's a drive that you need a day to recover from even though all you did was sit on your ass all day.

  • SeeksSeeks Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Not always a good idea

    For me, energy drinks work for the first 30 minutes or so and then I just start to crash. Some people do say it helps, but it just makes me even more tired than before I drank it.

    Eh, energy drinks work fine for me on 5-8 hour drives, from time to time.

    I only do that once every year or two, though, so I'm not like an expert on it.


    ...though honestly, it might just be the whole "stopping and getting out of the car" that does it. They typically don't have much of an effect on me in normal day-to-day life.

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  • Sir CarcassSir Carcass I have been shown the end of my world Austin, TXRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I've done my share of long drives (last one was Austin to Chicago, ~20 hours). One thing I can't recommend enough is to plan out your entire trip beforehand. Plan out the cities you're going to stop in, find a hotel online, and make reservations. Food you can generally do on the fly (though I've seen many hour plus stretches with no fast food), but, at least for me, having a definite goal for each day makes the trip much smoother. Being tired and trying to find a decent motel at midnight isn't my idea of fun. It's up to you how hard you want to push it, but I like to be checking into a hotel around 8 or 9 pm and leaving around 10 or 11 am.

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  • UsagiUsagi Feminazgul ~*special snowflake*~Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I used to drive DC to Charleston regularly, and I have to tell you that stretch of highway is boring as hell. Mostly straight, not much in the way of interest, so definitely have some music and munchies to keep you interested and awake.

    And if you have the time, you should stop at South of the Border just to say you did.

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  • BEAST!BEAST! Adventurer Adventure!!!!!Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Raneados wrote: »
    well I have all of sat and sunday to make a little below 900 miles
    yeah that should be no problem at all, i've done 1200 in a multiple times just fine, so if you're giving yourself 2 days for 900 it will be really easy

  • ElrosstElrosst Registered User
    edited October 2008
    You shouldn't even worry about 900 in two days. I do Nashville to central Minnesota maybe once a year, and I always do it in one day. It's around 1000; just bring lots of audio books and stay the hell away from red bull. In my experience, at least, the crashes are way harder than the small fast bit of energy you get from them.

    My attention span is like...zero, so I always have my 160gb ipod full, tons of audio books (in case i get sick of one), and a bunch of snacks. And make sure your cell phone is charged and you have a charger with. I always call a friend if i get really tired. Print out a run of your trip on google maps, and have one of those big multi-state maps too.

    Also if you have the chance, find out exactly how many miles you can go on a full tank. Then look at your map and kind of plan out where to stop for gas. try to do it on the outside of larger cities, there are usually stations outside of city limits that take less time to get to.

    edit: Oo oo forgot another thing. Baby wipes/hand wipes- because if you're snacking and drinking pop for a couple days straight, it is a huge waste of time to stop just to wash your hands.


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  • Limp mooseLimp moose Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    just a warning.

    I would make sure you get the car checked out by a mechanic before you buy it. If you have it taken to the dealership and have them do an inspection it should be less than 100$ and it could save you a hell of a lot of buyers remorse.

    Even if the guy is totally legit and thinks everything is great with the car that doesn't mean he would necessarily know if something was wrong with it. Wouldn't you rather find out that hey the brakes are going to need to be replaced in 5000 miles, the timing belts are worn, the fluid levels are low, and oh by the way there is a hole in your AC compressor hose. ALL little things that would add up to like a grand in maintenance after you got the car home.

    at the least its 100$ of peace of mind.

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    the car's been checked out already. When it got new tires he put it through

    Dubh wrote: »
    Rane is the future of ancient greek tradition
  • WetsunWetsun Registered User
    edited October 2008
    FYI, as someone who drives from MD to NC with some regularity:

    Speed if you must in MD, DC, NC, as they don't give a shit for the most part so long as traffic is flowing nicely.
    Don't speed in VA, as I see people getting pulled constantly for going slightly over.

    Also, the VA rest areas on I-95 are pretty nice compared to other states, so take advantage there if convenient.

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  • clsCorwinclsCorwin Registered User
    edited October 2008
    Thats very doable. You can power through about 1300 miles in 18 hours, so 900 should amount to a moderately paced leisurely drive.

  • JigrahJigrah Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Raneados wrote: »
    well I have all of sat and sunday to make a little below 900 miles

    ...

    You aren't going that far, that is easily a one day trip.

    Spoiler:
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Wetsun wrote: »
    FYI, as someone who drives from MD to NC with some regularity:

    Speed if you must in MD, DC, NC, as they don't give a shit for the most part so long as traffic is flowing nicely.
    Don't speed in VA, as I see people getting pulled constantly for going slightly over.

    Also, the VA rest areas on I-95 are pretty nice compared to other states, so take advantage there if convenient.

    In my experience, and this goes nationwide, you are like 6.7 times more likely to get pulled over if you have out-of-state plates and are outside a metro area. Basically cops actively look for dudes with out of state plates on long stretches of highway, even if they're only doing like 7mph over.

    So really, assuming this car has cruise control (do any exist anymore than don't?) you're best just setting it for the speed limit and sticking with it.

    And 900 in two days is a pretty easy drive, seriously.

    EDIT: And I agree that this can be a one-day trip (I've done Los Angeles, CA to Bozeman, MT in one shot), it wouldn't be a fun one. It's well worth the extra $50-$75 (hotel, food, etc.) to do it over two. Though as somebody else recommended, frontload it a bit, maybe driving an extra hour or two of it the first day...it'll lower your stress level on day two.

  • JigrahJigrah Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Wetsun wrote: »
    FYI, as someone who drives from MD to NC with some regularity:

    Speed if you must in MD, DC, NC, as they don't give a shit for the most part so long as traffic is flowing nicely.
    Don't speed in VA, as I see people getting pulled constantly for going slightly over.

    Also, the VA rest areas on I-95 are pretty nice compared to other states, so take advantage there if convenient.

    I hear horror stories about speeding in Virginia. One thing cool about it though is that they don't set up speed traps. I respect that a lot.

    Spoiler:
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