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Florida Natives: driving question


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27 south of Orlando is a different world, traffic wise, than the area of Gainesville to the Orlando area. But, the OP is not going south, but to Port Canaveral, so that's a moot point.

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8 hours ago, EngIceDave said:

Use Waze

You know, a coworker just told me about that!! I don’t know a lot about it but I’m going to download it and see! 

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Posted (edited)

It's like most other GPS mapping things, BUT it is audience participation.

 

While driving, I see a cop. I can put in the location of that cop. It will then show up on everyone else's Waze as a warning.

Now if when you get there, the cop is gone, you need to tell everyone else also, so there is no false reporting.

It does the same for road debris, traffic accidents and construction.

It's just another pair of eyes a few miles ahead at all times.

 

If everyone does their part, it's very efficient

Edited by EngIceDave
dorkfinger
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As a Michigan-based driver of many trips to Florida, my advice is AVOID ATLANTA. I cringe at the thought of a mid-afternoon drive through. 

 

We actually get off I75 in Northern Ohio and cut over to I77 to I26 to I95, even when heading to see the mouse in Orlando.  It's ~20-30 minutes longer per google, but Atlanta can easily eat up that time.

 

From a generic spot on I65 South of Chicago, Google is showing 16:56 hours going I75 through Atlanta, and 17:26 hours going I65 to Louisville, across to Lexington, then I75 down to Knoxville, and then I40 down through Asheville to pick up I26 to I95.   

 

I would do the latter in a heartbeat.  It's a more scenic drive in addition to avoiding Atlanta. 

 

One thing about Waze is that you have to coach it sometimes.   It probably won't offer that as an option, so you may have to put in a waypoint (set an intermediate destination in Knoxville to start it in the right direction) and then your final destination. 

 

 

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I have to agree with ATL

 

If you can't make it through the window of like 11am to 2pm -ABORT-ABORT-ABORT- Go around Atlanta entirely.

 

You can easily drop and hour or more outside that window.

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I'm a Florida native now living in Atlanta(35 years). We've driven to Port Canaveral multiple times for cruises, and I want to list a couple of good tips(many already mentioned):

 

Absolutely use WAZE

I75 south to Florida turnpike to 528 is a good route;  that said, avoid Atlanta on a Friday after 2pm

Approaching Atlanta, take Interstate 285 west/south to get around and south of the city back onto 75.

Do NOT take Interstate 16 from Macon east to I95--there was a recent bridge problem that may or may not be repaired, causing traffic back-ups.

We usually like to spend a night east of Orlando, near the airport. There are multiple hotels from every brand and plenty of restaurant choices for the evening. When we set out in the morning, we're just about an hour from the port, so we can choose an earliest possible boarding time.

We like parking in the deck adjacent to the ship; that lets us drop off the luggage to the porters, park and head for the check-in.

Departure day is quick and easy from the deck.

 

What ever route you take, please enjoy your trip and your cruise!

Barb

 

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16 hours ago, barb in ga said:

I'm a Florida native now living in Atlanta(35 years). We've driven to Port Canaveral multiple times for cruises, and I want to list a couple of good tips(many already mentioned):

 

Absolutely use WAZE

I75 south to Florida turnpike to 528 is a good route;  that said, avoid Atlanta on a Friday after 2pm

Approaching Atlanta, take Interstate 285 west/south to get around and south of the city back onto 75.

Do NOT take Interstate 16 from Macon east to I95--there was a recent bridge problem that may or may not be repaired, causing traffic back-ups.

We usually like to spend a night east of Orlando, near the airport. There are multiple hotels from every brand and plenty of restaurant choices for the evening. When we set out in the morning, we're just about an hour from the port, so we can choose an earliest possible boarding time.

We like parking in the deck adjacent to the ship; that lets us drop off the luggage to the porters, park and head for the check-in.

Departure day is quick and easy from the deck.

 

What ever route you take, please enjoy your trip and your cruise!

Barb

 

Excellent choices. The one about staying by the airport is a good one if you are driving. Cape Canaveral is a small island town. Not a Chilis or Outback on every corner like Orlando or most big cities. Hell, we're still getting excited over out new Starbucks (On Courtenay, barb in ga). 

 

Very good advice. Probably cheaper too, and just park at port

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On 7/20/2021 at 7:52 AM, D C said:

As a Michigan-based driver of many trips to Florida, my advice is AVOID ATLANTA. I cringe at the thought of a mid-afternoon drive through. 

 

We actually get off I75 in Northern Ohio and cut over to I77 to I26 to I95, even when heading to see the mouse in Orlando.  It's ~20-30 minutes longer per google, but Atlanta can easily eat up that time.

 

From a generic spot on I65 South of Chicago, Google is showing 16:56 hours going I75 through Atlanta, and 17:26 hours going I65 to Louisville, across to Lexington, then I75 down to Knoxville, and then I40 down through Asheville to pick up I26 to I95.   

 

I would do the latter in a heartbeat.  It's a more scenic drive in addition to avoiding Atlanta. 

 

One thing about Waze is that you have to coach it sometimes.   It probably won't offer that as an option, so you may have to put in a waypoint (set an intermediate destination in Knoxville to start it in the right direction) and then your final destination. 

 

 

So we’re in Central Illinois, we generally would plan to take I57 and get on I-24 in Southern Illinois. We could potentially take I65 south down to Montgomery but that’s just feels really out of the way. 
I know we could potentially go down the east coast but in January that feels really sketchy.. 

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On 7/24/2021 at 10:09 AM, kelkel2 said:

So we’re in Central Illinois, we generally would plan to take I57 and get on I-24 in Southern Illinois. We could potentially take I65 south down to Montgomery but that’s just feels really out of the way. 
I know we could potentially go down the east coast but in January that feels really sketchy.. 

We've driven that way too. Really not a bad drive (except for the screaming 2 year old we had at the time). Angle down to I10 from Montgomery. Several different options.  Less mountains to worry about in the winter, too. 

 

We've gone that way home from FL, too.  Drove along the panhandle coast to Pensacola, then turned north. 

 

 

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On 7/24/2021 at 10:09 AM, kelkel2 said:

So we’re in Central Illinois, we generally would plan to take I57 and get on I-24 in Southern Illinois. We could potentially take I65 south down to Montgomery but that’s just feels really out of the way. I know we could potentially go down the east coast but in January that feels really sketchy.. 

I-57 to I-24 is the best route through Illinois because it avoids Indianapolis and Louisville. While it seems like you're still in Illinois hours after leaving home, you're so far south when you finally do leave Illinois that KY and TN fall in quick succession.

 

I've done the route down I-65 through Alabama several times and it's just longer. Unfortunately, the routing between Montgomery and Dothan to I-10 at Cottondale is off the interstate so you're dealing with traffic lights and blue lights (cops).

 

As for Florida, the I-10 to I-95 to SR528 is the equal of I-75 to Turnpike to SR528. Traffic can happen anywhere if there's a wreck but both are likely good routes on any given day. And contrary to what someone above wrote, there is a direct connection from the Turnpike to SR528. But both the Turnpike and SR528 have tolls. Your I-PASS is part of EZ-PASS so your transponder is good on all FL toll roads.

 

Have a great cruise!

BobK/Orlando

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9 minutes ago, KINGBOBOFTHENORTH said:

I-57 to I-24 is the best route through Illinois because it avoids Indianapolis and Louisville. While it seems like you're still in Illinois hours after leaving home, you're so far south when you finally do leave Illinois that KY and TN fall in quick succession.

 

I've done the route down I-65 through Alabama several times and it's just longer. Unfortunately, the routing between Montgomery and Dothan to I-10 at Cottondale is off the interstate so you're dealing with traffic lights and blue lights (cops).

 

As for Florida, the I-10 to I-95 to SR528 is the equal of I-75 to Turnpike to SR528. Traffic can happen anywhere if there's a wreck but both are likely good routes on any given day. And contrary to what someone above wrote, there is a direct connection from the Turnpike to SR528. But both the Turnpike and SR528 have tolls. Your I-PASS is part of EZ-PASS so your transponder is good on all FL toll roads.

 

Have a great cruise!

BobK/Orlando

Thank you so much for your insight! 
My husband and I talked about it and we’re going to leave around 3am from Illinois to attempt to hit ATL mid afternoon before rush hour. We’ll likely stay somewhere south of there for the evening, stop for dinner and relax the rest of the evening. We’re hoping to do 4ish hours the next day, since we did the Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Daytona route growing up, I’ll probably go that way just out of familiarity! 

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I do not disagree with the above, just to add a variable to it.

 

Turnpike is two lanes each way. It's like driving in a hallway. If there's a crash or heavy traffic, you're stuck.

 

(I drive this every other week, Gainesville to Port Canaveral every other week to see our grand baby....so I know)

 

I-95 is 3 to 4 lanes wide at any spot, even with a minor crash, it can keep moving.

 

A cop pulling over someone can back up Turnpike for miles

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On 7/18/2021 at 6:32 AM, kelkel2 said:

Oh and I’ve sat in it before in Orlando! That’s why I was wondering if coming down i95 is better? But I suppose Jacksonville, St. Augustine, and Daytona can back up too!

Honestly a little traffic isn’t going to kill us. We’re leaving on a Thursday morning and the ship leaves Saturday. So we have time built in. It’s just more or less annoying. 

The Jacksonville/St Augustine/Daytona is much smoother than Orlando and/or Atlantic traffic.

(from someone who lives here and has been through the other places.)

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
10 hours ago, cherylnj said:

The 528 is also a toll road 

True!

 

We also do bill by plate here now, some spots won't even take cash. Do not worry about it, just drive through, a bill will arrive in the mail

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8 hours ago, EngIceDave said:

True!

 

We also do bill by plate here now, some spots won't even take cash. Do not worry about it, just drive through, a bill will arrive in the mail

 

Is there a surcharge applied to the toll because of the State having to do this?  

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On 8/17/2021 at 4:01 PM, EngIceDave said:

Yes, a few percentage points

 

 

 

Thanks for your reply.  That's what I thought would happen.  (Takes the place of a "fine" by driving through such toll gates without paying?)  

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, Pyrate13 said:

Service fee, ha, Just a slick way to increase the toll without stating it as such, that's what it is.

 

According to friends who have lived and are living in Florida after moving from OH and PA, Florida has no State Income Tax, but does have lots of "fees".  

Edited by rkacruiser
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