At one time, auto travel was always less expensive but less convenient than air travel. In an era of high gas prices, enhanced airport security and airfare wars, the comparison is not as cut and dried. When deciding which way to travel, be sure to consider all the factors. Each method of travel offers its own pros and cons, and your ultimate decision will be based on what is most important to you.
Your car’s seats may be significantly more comfortable than those on an airplane, unless you travel first class, but you must stay in the same position for hours. Switching drivers periodically allows everyone to change position, but you must stop moving if you want to walk around or get something to eat which air travel you do have the ability to nap, snack and walk around.
On long distance trips air travel is significantly faster than auto travel, as long as your flight is not delayed or canceled. On shorter trips, the length of time you must spend in airports could be a factor. Most airlines recommend that you arrive at least an hour or two before the flight to get through security. Claiming checked baggage could add another 30 minutes to the trip.
Weather delays are a common concern for both road trips and flights. Unlike an airplane, however, you may be able to route your car trip around significant weather problems. Even if you must stop, on a car trip you are in control of your hotel and dining options. If a flight is delayed due to weather, you may be responsible for paying for your own accommodations and dining, but your options are limited to airport hotels or those accessible by public transportation.
If your car breaks down on a road trip, you are responsible for getting it fixed and securing your own accommodations while repairs are being done. If your flight is delayed due to a mechanical failure on the airplane, the airline is generally responsible for your lodging and dining.
Add all the expenses for each method of travel together, and then compare the final results.
Click here if you would like to read some pros and cons
We have flown from Denver, Colorado to Portland, Maine and the flight was straight there and it ended up a little over 4 hours. We drove from Portland, Maine to Denver, Colorado and the drive took us a little over 3 days due to all the construction and traffic. The cost for flying was much cheaper than driving.