New answers tagged road-trips
The problem that you state is known in academia as the Traveling Salesman Problem as pointed out by @ZachLipton. Googling for that expression in combination with app/website/software gives a few good finds. As apps I could find e.g. Concorde TSP and Route4Me (no affiliation nor experience). A nice online tool is Optimap which seems to use Google ...
Nowadays, nearly all rental companies offer you the option to handle that for you (for a fee, of course). By using the road, you took the option. There are minor differences, but for reference here the National Car Rental rules (forgive me if I am 5 cents off): You pay all the tolls that are to pay, for the normal price. Each calendar day you used a toll ...
With a rental car, you'd hear from the rental car company eventually if you skipped out on any tolls, usually with a large added fee attached. They'll just bill your credit card. However, unless you drove down any express lanes, which are toll/carpool lanes that look like this, with big signs showing a price and restrictions, there are no "hidden" tolls ...
For mobile data - as of the 30th April 2016, by EU law, you can only be charged a small excess (+ €0.05 /mb) on what you would normally pay. From 15th June 2017, this will advance further to not additional charge from what you would normally pay. It isn't clear to me if this includes included minutes, texts and data allowances as part of a monthly contract ...
There are various offline map solutions for iOS. I use ones based on openstreetmaps such as osmAnd. With these types of apps, you can download maps for the areas you intend to visit either before hand or at places where wifi access is available. Search the app store for "offline maps" to see other possibilities.
The answers posted are in line with my experience. I recently traveled in a 2014 Audi A6 3.0 TDI on a trip to pick up my daughter at college. Round trip was about 800 miles. On the roof was a Rhino Rack with oval shaped cross beams and on the rack was a mountain bike and Yakima box filled with items such as duffle bags, books, etc. Inside the car were ...
I've found reviews at Trip Advisor and, especially, Booking.com to be reliable. You can get mobile apps for both. The idea of sticking to one chain is also reasonable, but it might be difficult in some of the less populated areas. Off topic, on that route I recommend making a detour to as many National Parks of the Southwest as possible.
How 'good' do you need it to be? A room at any of the major hotel chains will be a clean, comfortable sleeping spot. Smaller mom & pop places can be nice as well, I usually check their outside appearance first... clean parking lot, hanging plants, a bit of outside furniture. Most small motels will let you see the room before paying.
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