How Far Would You (Do You) Drive to an Airport?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by mailbroad, Apr 2, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. mailbroad

    mailbroad Silver Member

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    How far would you drive to an airport to use miles? The local airport is about half an hour from my house but it is not serviced by SW or AA. It probably would be silly to get those cards but a fair amount of people travel 3 hours to take flights on those. Of course gas is going up and up!
     
  2. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    When I lived in Northern Vermont, the closest airport (BTV) was about 60 miles away, but that could be 2-3 hours at the wrong time of year. I was generally better off driving the 230 miles on interstates to BOS and getting better rates and routings out of there.
     
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  3. sellthesedownfalls

    sellthesedownfalls Silver Member

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    Oooof. I'm lazy - I don't do any business traveling, only personal, and it's pretty much a requirement that I live within 20-30 minutes of a decent airport. Boston, San Francisco, San Jose, now Baltimore!

    Living close by means I can get friends to drive to and pick me up from the airport, saving $ on parking the car (of course I reciprocate when they travel).
     
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  4. DTWBOB

    DTWBOB Silver Member

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    Let me twist the question a bit-- how far would you drive to get miles or save money. In the DTW area, there are two good alt. airports (FNT and DTW) and Mrs DTWBOB and I won't hesitate to use either airport and have often gotten flights for 50% less -- plus lots of extra miles and a savings on parking. For us, driving distance is 50-70 miles.

    DTWBOB
     
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  5. jrp2

    jrp2 Gold Member

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    24 miles to the ATL or 70 miles to CSG.
     
  6. Jeff the Wanderer

    Jeff the Wanderer Silver Member

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    I am about 20 minutes from AVP, but I don't think anyone would consider that a real airport for award travel. Other than that, we are about 2 - 2 1/2 hours from either PHL or EWR. We usually just go to whichever has the better rates.

    For awards, it depends on where the availability is. I am driving about 3 hours and 15 minutes (if I don't hit too much traffic) to JFK this week. That was the only option to get 6 seats (coach) on the same flights to get my wife and I, our kids, and my parents to Paris with miles over Easter.

    If there is a good deal to be had, I wouldn't have a problem driving to BWI or one of the DC airports. They are all within the 3 hour window too.

    Of course, my favorite drive is about 6 minutes to the tiny local airport where I skydive. Never any traffic, parking is free, and there is no TSA to deal with before I get on the plane. The only catch is the flights are one way only. You can go up, but you have to find your own way back down.
     
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  7. Up&Away

    Up&Away Silver Member

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    10 minutes from our local airport with free parking and no lines. We use it every chance we get, but the fares out of there are ridiculous most the time. (Unlike, Jeff, though, we've always gotten to the next airport rather than a field.) DFW and AUS are within 2 or 2 1/2 hrs from our house. So, we end up there for most flights. And IAH is a possibility, though it's been years since the fare was good enough to warrant the 3+ hour drive.
     
  8. julielou2
    Original Member

    julielou2 Silver Member

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    I like this question. I live a little over an hour away from two airports...Harrisburg Intl and BWI. Harrisburg is so easy to get to and is way less busy...but the fares are always much more expensive. BWI is just a bit further away(in terms of a commute) and is, of course, very busy...but the fares are a lot cheaper. So it comes down to convenience (Harrisburg) or money (BWI). In my case I chose money over convenience if I'm paying for it. And if my employer is paying I chose convenience over money.
     
  9. mailbroad

    mailbroad Silver Member

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    Ha! I live in Vermont and BTV is my airport!!!!!
     
  10. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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  11. penumpang
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    penumpang Gold Member

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    I've always used my local airport (CMH), which is only about 15 miles/25 minutes from my house. The only exception was when CO had their weekend special (or whatever it was called) from CLE to YUL for $100 something. We drove to CLE, which is about 130 miles.
     
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  12. perryplatypus

    perryplatypus Gold Member

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    I live 90 miles from OKC and DFW. 95% of the time I fly out of DFW because of the price is lower. But it's nice to have options!
     
  13. brockb

    brockb Silver Member

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    The closest airport for me is about an hour and a half that works great for AA rewards typically, but is small and buying tickets isn't such a great deal. I'm going to LGA in June and will be driving around 5 hours to my wife's uncles house and then flying nonstop from STL. Either way the "travel time" is about the same, but the cost is a a couple hundred cheaper.
     
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  14. wrxmom

    wrxmom Gold Member

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    The closest airport to me is 10 minutes but it's not serviced by AA anymore; SAN is 45 minutes and I predominantly fly from there. LAX is 1 hour 45 minutes without traffic. I did the brutal drive to LAX for a bunch of DUB runs in 2009 when the price was ridiculously cheap. Unless I'm going to save $300 or more, it's not worth the time, drive, and extra gas. All it takes is one bad accident and you can miss your flight.
     
  15. TheBeerHunter
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    TheBeerHunter Silver Member

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    I live in downtown San Jose...but tend to do most of my flying out of SFO. Cheaper prices, more direct flights, just generally better options.

    I do tend to get a bit giddy when I am able to make it work to fly out of SJC, though. While I miss the Aadmiral's Club there, it is so nice to be off the plane and home within 15-20 minutes :D Sort of like how I feel returning to the US having Global Entry!
     
  16. Art234
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    Art234 Milepoint Guide

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    I live about 13 miles or 20 minutes from ISP, however, the choices from there are limited -- US through PHL or now DCA, or WN via BWI....as they stop MDW soon. Therefore I will drive more often about 45-60 min to LGA or JFK, each roughly 37 miles door to door, especially on a freebie, which would most often be out of the country.
     
  17. nova

    nova Silver Member

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    Local airport is HSV. I've driven to BNA and BHM to hop a southwest flight but lately I've decided it's worth the extra $$ not to have to drive.
     
  18. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    +1

    I think it depends on the savings or what you're trying to achieve. If you have to drive 2 hours there and back to save $100 then (IMO) it makes absolutely no sense, but if it's more then... perhaps? :)

    I generally take the trek to JFK/LGA which are 45 minutes from my house, but a couple of years ago I went all the way out to ISP (added another hour) to grab some WN flights to LAS for half the price ($180 compared to $350). When you have 3-4 people going in one car the savings are substantial and the drive is not as bad.

    BUT if we're talking awards then it's a whole other story. I'll drive to PHL/IAD if I need to in order to catch the right flight. Hell, I'm sure some of us here have taken positioning flights to catch the right metal / seat.
     
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  19. Casey Friday
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    Casey Friday Silver Member

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    I live in SAT, but I constantly find fares on JetBlue cheaper from AUS than I can get on Southwest from SAT. The drive is only a little over an hour, and it's pleasant. Also, I'm really growing to love JetBlue, so it's worth it to me.
     
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  20. LAXtraveler
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    LAXtraveler Gold Member

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    I generally fly out of LAX since it is the closest. I love BUR for its ease and lack of lines (but it only has limited flight options for my purposes). I've gone from LGB once, but don't really see the point of doing it again since the prices don't warrant the drive time.
     
  21. Gaucho
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    Gaucho Gold Member

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    I enjoy driving.... so leaving $$ aside, I dont mind driving up to 90/100 miles to get to an airport if the mileage and/or price of tickets makes it worth while.
     
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  22. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    I drive as far as I need to get the overall lowest cost with the best overall travel schedule. Luckily, I live in LA and can drive to 5 different airports all w/in 1 hr: LAX (36 miles), BUR (22 miles), ONT (33 miles), SNA (45 miles), LGB (30 miles).
     
  23. PanAm
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    PanAm Silver Member

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    I drove 150 miles to.DTW (from DAY) when I found a.great price on flights to CDG one time. We often will go the extra 40 miles to fly from CMH as price and award.seats are often better than DAY.

    I don't really like to drive, so I would probably keep it under 3 hours drive time unless.it was a.really huge savings.
     
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  24. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Where I have to connect anyway, I've been trying to see how SJC works out after years of not flying through there. I have three upcoming flights this year where I'm flying into and out of different airports because it works best for my purposes. SJC sucks for non-stops I want to take, and I like non-stops.
     
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  25. emajy
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    emajy Silver Member

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    I am lucky living in central NJ. EWR is 45 minutes and PHL is 1:25 hours away. LGA and JFK are both 1.25 + hours away depending on traffic so I search them all and see which offers me the best deal.
     
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