Traveling the States, do we drive or do we fly - Thrifty Living Today
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Traveling the States, do we drive or do we fly


This summer, my husband and I spent a lot of time deciding whether to drive or take an airplane from our home in Minnesota to Southern California.


Welcome to Thrifty Living Today, a special way of life for the Twenty-first Century.

My name is Lori Blatzheim and I am your host.

Some of the factors we considered were the following.


Driving involves a lot of preparation


First of all, the car needs to be in good shape, running well, with a recent oil change, and good tires. Insurance documents need to be in the glove compartment. We need to select the route and plan where we will stop for the night. We need maps and/or a GPS to guide our way. (We use maps.)


We have to pack and place suitcases and supplies in the car. The ice chest needs to be prepared with ice (I use half gallon milk containers, filled with frozen water). Then it is placed in the trunk along with the suitcases.


Emergency supplies need to be available. I bring a first aid kit and my husband selects a few tools which may prove helpful on the road.


Work of Driving


The distance from our home to our daughter’s in California is close to 2000 miles. We try to make it in three and a half days. That means we need to rise early and find a place to stay by sunset. We aim for about 500-600 miles a day. While driving, we do our best to keep a safe speed and avoid trucks.


The challenge of age


O.K. so all of this worked fine when we were younger. Our children grew up with the knowledge that every summer we would make this trip. They learned the names of all the States we passed through and what the word State meant. They saw desert, ranch land, farms cities, and towns. They noticed the roofs of houses and how they became more pitched (and less flat) as we approached areas that would be covered by snow in winter. They looked forward to rest stops and parks where we let them run around and play on any available play equipment.


Now, they are grown. Our stamina and concentration has declined a bit. We started asking ourselves if a tedious trip would be a good idea.


We considered the roundtrip fare. The least expensive we could find was $350 for each of us to fly round trip.


We thought of the cost and inconveniences of modern flight; transportation to and from airports, weight and cost of booked luggage, the squished seats, an additional charge for sitting with family members, the need to eat prior to the flight.


But then, nothing is perfect.



After all our thinking, discussion, and calculation of price, we decided to fly.


Do we think we made the right choice? Yes.



·        Cost of gas

·        Service needs for the car

·        Concerns over breaking down on the road

·        Putting additional miles on the car

·        Potential for “on the road breakdowns”

·        Cost of lodging and eating on the road

·        A potential for a medical event during the trip

I really miss the opportunity to see the country, meet people along the road and reap the satisfaction of completing a successful trip. But time and wisdom has convinced me that we took the right trip, at the right time.

I wish you all satisfactory trips from one end of our wonderful country to the other. Those of us who have taken the time to really see the land have a special appreciation for it. The USA is a very special place.

Lori Blatzheim is a wife, mother, grandmother, writer, thrift advocate, and retired nurse. She knows that use of Thrift can help people because she has experienced the benefits.

Are you a Senior? Do you have a friend or relative who is considering retirement or has already retired? Check out this web site: Retire and Renew:


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About Lori Blatzheim

Created Retire and Renew, dedicated to those who are planing to or facing retirement or are living a Senior life: http:retireandrenew.com
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