SURVEY SAYS: Cross Country Travel

Suppose you were taking a vacation to travel across the United States.

Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, which method of travel they think would be the most enjoyable way to travel across the country, and how long would they like their trip to be to give time to stop at desired destinations.


Car was the No. 1 method of travel responding readers think would be the most enjoyable way to travel across the country (41.2%), followed by RV or camper (30%). “Train” was selected by 17.5% of responding, motorcycle was chosen by 6.2% and airplane was chosen by 5%.


By far, more than one month was the length of time respondents would like their trip to be to give time to stop at desired destinations (40.7%); one month came in a distant second (24.7%). “Two weeks” and “three weeks” were each chosen by 7.4% of readers, while “one week” and “between two and three weeks” each were chosen by 6.2%. “Between one and two weeks” was selected by 4.9%, and “between three weeks and one month” was selected by 2.5%.


In verbatim comments, bicycle was added to the list of most enjoyable ways to travel. Some readers have already traveled across the country, and others say it is on their “bucket list.” U.S. parks were common recommended destinations. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said: “This country has many, many wonderful sights to see. It would be nice to have more than a month to visit the various parts of the country and learn more about the local attractions. If/when retirement ever arrives, traveling in a camper or RV throughout the country is one of those ‘bucket list’ items that I would like to check off.”


Thanks to all who participated in the survey!



I checked motorcycle because it was closest to my actual number 1 choice: bicycle. In fact, I rode my bicycle cross-country once before and would love to do it again before my knees completely give out. This is a WONDERFUL way to really see the country, meet interesting people, and experience nature.

The success of the trip is directly correlated to the person(s) going with. My best friend – months. My ex – 2 days and I would have thrown him off the train!

I would love to take a year off and just see as much of the continental 48 as possible. I wish we valued trains as much as Europe does and that we had the ability to visit more cities directly via trains rather than a combo of trains and cars.

Can’t wait for retirement!

I’ve travelled cross-country by train multiple times & the views (& comfort) are amazing! Would be great to have the luxury of hopping off for a few days to go exploring before continuing on the journey.

I just finished a 10-day vacation (driving) covering 19 different states and over 4,100 miles. It was the best vacation I’ve ever taken!

I am planning on doing a full circle visit of the United States of America and it will probably take up to a year to complete

With your own car, you can stop on a whim and enjoy the sights as they come up.

This country has many, many wonderful sights to see. It would be nice to have more than a month to visit the various parts of the country and learn more about the local attractions. If/when retirement ever arrives, traveling in a camper or RV throughout the country is one of those “bucket list” items that I would like to check off.


On my bucket list

Specifically, a convertible Corvette or a cool old car built before 1968. We’d pack lightly and enjoy the comfort of hotels at night and maybe stay a few days anywhere that feels great. I’d say 9 months and then a break for winter and holidays and start it all over again in the spring. Of course, this isn’t happening until my retirement kicks in!

I want to explore more of the western states. A van or SUV is preferable to me. It enables one to go almost anywhere. Trains, planes and buses have limited places they go. A camper or RV can be cumbersome in some areas. They just don’t fit and can’t make the turns on some canyon or mountain roads.

Car gives me complete flexibility to stop whenever I like to see points of interest. I live in the middle of the country and have driven to both coasts on sight-seeing vacations.

Take a route that brings you through both our beautiful National Parks and Scenic areas as well as allowing some stops for unique (or “tacky”) attractions like the World’s Biggest Ball of String.

Love a great car trip! Stop where you want and for however long. There are absolutely amazing and beautiful things in this country. We just have to take the time to smell the roses, or the trees, or the waterfalls, or the rainforest, or the……

We just finished a 2,887 mile trip to the far Midwest back to the Mid Atlantic. It was wonderful and took us 11 comfortable days, staying awhile in a couple of spots. This is for me the best kind of vacation.

Nothing like the sound of a train on the tracks to totally relax me! I can’t think of a better way to travel.

In a little less than four years, my husband and I are hoping to retire and spend our first summer of freedom traveling across the U.S. in our RV, just going where the road and sights take us!

Let’s go!

I would want to supplement traveling by train with car rentals to get to the really interesting places.

Must be camper — must include dog! Plus, I expect it’s better for naps.

It took us more than a week to visit six national parks in the Southwest and we could have spent much more time. We had a lot of freedom traveling by car and could take unplanned side trips. Here’s to more road trips in the U.S.!

Traveling across country by train would provide opportunity to visit local venues at each stop. Get back on the train to the next location. I think train trips are enjoyable and the scenery is beautiful.

You missed traveling by bicycle – at 80 miles per day with 1 day off per week, it would take approximately 2 months.

I have traveled several times by car from Florida to Colorado, Wisconsin, Canada, Massachusetts, New York and various places in between. It has given my family time to be together and you can go off the beaten path to see things you might not otherwise see. We make the ride an adventure and it makes it so much fun building memories with our son.

There is so much to see, it would take at least a year and then I’m sure there would be things I missed.

And I don’t have to pay for it!

Just took a one week leisurely car trip through Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. It was great. Definitely recommend traveling by car.

It’s more fun if you stay away from the interstate freeways, and aim for the backroads.

The continental U.S. is quite large so the only way to see most of it is by automobile!

There are so many fascinating sites to see and to be able to travel by RV would be amazing; stay as long as you want in places, move on through quickly in others.

We’ve already traveled by car to distant places within the US. It allowed us the ability to stop when and where we wanted, and stay as long as we wanted. I’d do it again, time permitting.

First, I’d have to make sure I had enough cash! Then I’d purchase a new luxury SUV with room to store clothing for several climates and take a year to just putter from east to west, north to south, staying in upscale hotels along the way!

I’d rather get to my destination quicker by plane and increase my stay in each targeted metro area than have to waste precious time driving across the country even if transportation by car would be more “scenic”.

It would be a nice way to see the US and enjoy our great country.

This survey is timely: I am literally planning our 2018 trip across the country. Historically we fly from the Midwest to the West Coast to maximize our time with family and friends. However, we are contemplating a road trip since the kids are old enough to appreciate the sights and sites along the way.

This trip must be flown in a general aviation aircraft, preferably a Vans RV-7 or -8, a two seat, 200 mph plane that can take off and land short, and has a bubble canopy perfect for sightseeing. Camping under the wing is optional.

I would like at least 8 weeks. I wouldn’t want to be rushed and have the ability to stop where we want, when we want and stay as long as we want. Let me know when we leave 🙂

Split it up over several years taking one section of the country at a time

I travel around the country on a motorcycle every year. Most of my vacations are taken that way. I would like to be able to spend 3 to 5 days in almost every state. I have been to 33 states so far using this mode of travel. I prefer to stay in small towns rather that large cities meeting lots of people.

These answers based on pure fantasy. I’m sure I’d lose interest fairly quickly in my “dream” mode of travel!

I was torn between the choice of car or train. Getting there is 1/2 the fun, or more in this case. The train won out because it’s such a stress-free way to travel where you can sit back and enjoy the view.

Although it takes longer to travel by motorcycle (due to fatigue), it is much more enjoyable as you see and feel a lot more of your surroundings. I drove my motorcycle to Alaska and back! It was a long trip, but there was a lot to see and experience along the way.

In answer to Q2: a lifetime.

My gut response was to prefer travel by train because I think that would comfortable, but traveling by car means you “wander off” and discover little known gems. So car it is!

The ideal vacation would be to spend a day in each state just taking in the view, with no scheduled tours of anything. We have a beautiful country and every state has its own natural beauty to share.

Great way to see all our national parks have to offer!



NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not necessarily the stance of Strategic Insight or its affiliates.