Post Number: 194
Posted From: 188.8.131.52
|Posted on Wednesday, May 12, 2010 - 12:01 am: |
Glad you got home safe and sound. The Volcano is acting up again. Maybe not the best time to go to Europe. Good meeting you and Sue on the Indy. David
Post Number: 78
Posted From: 184.108.40.206
|Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 - 07:39 pm: |
We got back to Nashville well after the flooding and had no problems. We had left our car at our daughter's house in White House which was well away from the problems.
Post Number: 113
Posted From: 220.127.116.11
|Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 - 07:33 pm: |
Nice trip report and very informative. It was good you shopped around for rental car prices. Sometimes the one-way rentalsl are good deals and sometimes they are not.
Glad you had a great trip.
Post Number: 2714
Posted From: 18.104.22.168
|Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 - 06:41 pm: |
Did you have any trouble with any of the floods? We were stuck on the east coast, Hertz wanted $670 for one way to Dallas from Philly. They used to have a good rate, but not now.
Post Number: 77
Posted From: 22.214.171.124
|Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 - 06:01 pm: |
We had planned to fly out of Mildenhall on Tuesday, May 4th , but all the flights out that day had no seats available. As stated in the first part of this trip report, we checked back into the TLF and stayed another three nights at Mildenhall because nothing was going out for the next 72 hours. We ate in the dinning hall and picked up some snacks from a little grocery in Beck Row, since we were not allowed to purchase anything from the Shopette or the commissary.
We found out on Thursday that there were two flights to Moron and on to Sigonella and one KC-135 to Grand Forks, ND on the schedule for Friday morning. Since we really wanted something on the east coast, our first plan was to take one of the flights to Sigonella and see if we could pick up a flight from there.
We stopped by the taxi cab office at the Gateway Inn office and booked a cab to pick us up at the TLF at 0615 Friday, since we were in Bldg. 105 and about as far from the Passenger Terminal as we could be and still be on base. That worked out well and on Friday it was a 3.60 GBP ride to the terminal.
When we checked in we were informed that the Sigonella stop had been dropped from both flights. Due to the worry about the volcanic ash problem that was still a factor, we elected to pass on the two flights to Moron and try for the KC-135 to Grand Forks – sticking to the rule of getting the first plane headed in the direction you are going. That turned out to be a wise move because the volcano acted up again and grounded most of the flights in Spain the next day.
Anxiously awaiting roll call we sat as four duty pax checked in and one lone dependent and one female dependent with two small children. That was eight folks and Sue and I were nine and ten. I later found from the Pax Rep that the duty pax did not count on the ten seats released and that really there was room for four more SPATs.
We bought our box lunches for $4.50 each and launched on time. There was a heat problem and only hot air would come out of the vents – no way to control the temp. We spent the next 10 hours putting on sweatshirts when the heat was turned off and taking them back off when the heat was turned on. It was either sweltering hot or freezing cold the whole trip.
We arrived at Grand Forks about 1630 local and found there were no space-a flights scheduled the rest of the weekend and was no transportation around the base.
Plan A had been to rent a car and drive to Nashville, but it turned out that the Hertz fee was about $279 a day for the car, and we would need at least two days to get there. We passed on that plan.
Plan B was to get a Greyhound bus to Nashville and pick up our car. We discarded that plan when I found that Greyhound did not operate there and we would have to go through Jefferson Bus line and then transfer to Greyhound and it would be a 30+ hour, three-transfer, trip and would cost us $350 approximately.
Plan C was to ride Amtrak from there to Memphis and retrieve our car from Nashville later. That was also going to be about 30 hours, with one transfer, and cost us $438, but sounded better than the bus ride. I made reservations for two tickets and was told I could pick them up at the terminal. I did not have to pay at that time – which turned out to be a good thing.
We shared a cab to the airport with another SPAT - $25 ($9 each) flat fee from the pax terminal to the airport, with intentions to just stay in the cab and go on to the Amtrak station. The cab driver informed us the Amtrak station did not open until midnight, and since it was only 1800, we elected to stay in the airport terminal and out of the rain and where we could eat dinner. We arranged for the cab drive to pick us up at 2350 and take us to Amtrak.
After dinner I was walking around the terminal and stopped by the Avis desk just to see what they would rent me a car for. It turned out that I could get a one-way Avis rental from Grand Forks to Nashville for $203 for two days. I called and cancelled the cab and the Amtrak tickets and rented the car and we drove it back to Grand Forks AFB and checked into the lodge for the night at $39.
The next morning we got up early, due to the time change between England and the states, and started on the journey. We drove to Scott AFB, IL and stayed in their Lodge that night for $39 as well. The next morning we got up and drove the rest of the way to Nashville, picked up our car, turned in the rental car and drove back to Memphis, getting home about 1900.
We drove the rental car 1249 miles and put about $140 in gas in it, but it was a nice ride and we saw a part of the country we had never seen.
It pays to have all options planned out. We ended up staying gone one month exactly but never panicked and made it home safe and sound with a great vacation experience.