Route 66 Forum  

The place to discuss anything Route 66 related. Ask questions, make recommendations or simply chew the fat! New members might like to introduce themselves in the pinned thread. By registering for the forum you are also able to comment on or review any of the listings in the Trip Planner.
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First timer
April 17, 2016
4:07 pm
London, UK
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Forum Posts: 1
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April 17, 2016
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Hi everyone, myself and my partner Tom have booked our Route 66 trip for May - June 2017 for 3 weeks. We begin in Chicago and end in LA.

Planning this trip has taken months and to have finally put a deposit down to secure the hard work feels a rush of relief!

But now as time goes on and paying our holiday off, we are also saving for our spending money (which includes the resort fees, car parking fees, national park fees, and any toll fees.) As both of us have never driven in the States before we have no idea how much money we need to aim to take with us. We were advised $75 pp/p day but this is literally just for food. We want to ensure we have a blast (which I'm sure we will, but without the added stress of worrying about money).

Our situation is we both still live at home with our parents, do not have any children and only have the basic outgoings eg. mobile phone, car insurance and travel to work. So our savings won't be a problem, but we need an estimate of how much money we need to take with us.

If anyone has any idea please do share! We would greatly appreciate it. In our heads we plan on taking $5000 in total. Is this enough to have a good time and pay for all the fees along the route?

Kind regards


April 18, 2016
12:51 am
Adelaide South Australia
Forum Posts: 41
Member Since:
July 22, 2013
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This is an almost impossible question to answer as everyone has different needs. From my trip i spent nowhere near $150 a day on food for 2 of us.
Food is vey affordable in the US, unless of course you want 5 star meals every night. I am not saying you need to eat burgers everyday either, there is a lot of good food at reasonable prices.
Look at a few restaurant / Bar /Diner websites in the places you are stopping, most have prices on.

June 15th to July 13th 2016
Did the whole thing, Chicago to Santa Monica

April 19, 2016
3:42 pm
Bonnie and Clyde
Forum Posts: 27
Member Since:
November 22, 2015
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Hi Clare - good luck with your trip next year. Whilst we've driven in the USA before and quite a lot in and around Europe, sept. 2016 is our first time driving 66. Like thepengy says, food is very affordable in America, as can be overnight stays (there aint many 7 star hotels on Route 66 let's face it) but very difficult to budget and as we're doing a 21-day trip the same as you, we've taken out the flights and car hire and decided to load £4000 onto cash cards. This should cover us for any unforeseen things (we hope ha ha) and are just winging the accommodation as we travel, which is the only way to do it and if you spend a night sleeping in the car, then you can treat yourselves to a massive breakfast lol.

We do expect to bring money back with us of course as though we have treated ourselves over there (Malibu Inn for 1 night and a Hollywood hotel) I'd say $5000 should be ample for what you're after. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

April 21, 2016
8:36 pm
Down south in Dixie
Forum Posts: 149
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April 6, 2013
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Clare, lodging will be the biggest daily out lay of money. I would venture to say that an average of 100 dollars a day for lodging would be a good round number as some days will be more, others less. Depending on the vehicle you have gas could run from 25 to 40 dollars a day if gas stays below 2 dollars a gallon. Food could vary widely depending on your mood, but say 60 dollars a day for the two of you. All these numbers are pure speculation, but hopefully this will give you a good starting point.

Notice I didn't put a number on miscellaneous items you may want as souvenirs of the trip. You know there will be some. 🙂

It's always better to guess high on the money. You don't want to run out.

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