Los Angeles Transportation

Getting from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon

grandcanyonAs two of the certain must-visit places in the US, Los Angeles and the Grand Canyon are easily combined in one trip, but getting from one to the other isn’t quite as straightforward as you might expect. There is a small airport at the Grand Canyon, but there aren’t scheduled flights from major airlines, so it can be a little tricky unless you know how to pull this off.

For the purposes of this article, we’ll be discussing the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, as this is where the vast majority of the tourist infrastructure and famous views can be found. The North Rim is actually a long drive from the South Rim, and it’s much harder to reach from Los Angeles as well. The South Rim is a far better place to visit for first-timers as well, so forget the North Rim for now.

Los Angeles to Grand Canyon

  • Distance apart: 410 miles / 660 kilometers
  • Driving distance: 502 miles / 808 kilometers

Quick summary

Unless you intend to actually spend some time in either Phoenix or Las Vegas, which isn’t a bad idea now that we mention it, then driving to the Grand Canyon is probably the best bet for most people. You can also fly to one of three airports or take a train or bus, but all of those options won’t get you all the way there.

Flights from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon

This is where it gets complicated. There is a small airport near the Grand Canyon, but it only does charter flights, mostly out of Las Vegas and for aerial tours of the area. This means if you are intent to fly you have 3 options.

Fly into Flagstaff, Arizona (FLG) – This small airport is about 90 miles south of the South Rim, and has a few regular flights that have surprisingly low fares if you book in advance. There’s a bus company called Open Road Tours and they have regular coaches to the Grand Canyon from Flagstaff.

Fly into Phoenix, Arizona (PHX) – This is a huge city and airport about 240 miles south of the South Rim. From here you can rent a car cheaply and it’s a lovely drive as well.

Fly into Las Vegas, Nevada (LAS) – This growing city is about 280 miles from the South Rim, and a bit less to the North Rim. Rental cars tend to be cheap, but then again the drive itself isn’t much farther than driving all the way from Los Angeles.

Trains from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon

You can’t take a train all the way to the Grand Canyon, but you can take it directly to Flagstaff, which is only about 90 miles away. From there you can take the Open Road Tours bus to the Grand Canyon. One tricky thing is the trains usually leave in the evening, so you arrive in Flagstaff the next morning.

Journey time: About 10 hours
Typical price: About $59 each way
>>Amtrak site

Buses from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon

The bus situation is exactly like the train situation, mentioned above. You can take a Greyhound bus to Flagstaff and then the Open Road Tours bus from there. It’s a bit slower, and even a bit more expensive than the train, but at least you have the option of traveling during the day.

Journey time: About 12 hours to Flagstaff
Typical price: $64 one-way if you buy online in advance, and up to $85 if you buy on the day.
>>Greyhound website

Driving from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon

This might be your best bet, since all the other methods are complicated and indirect anyway. You can get specific directions on any online map site, but the quick version is you find your way to I-40 out of Los Angeles, and then drive about 420 miles to Williams, Arizona, at which point you’ll take AZ-64 north for about 70 miles and you are there.

Journey time: About 8 hours

Los Angeles Transportation

Getting from Los Angeles to Phoenix

phoenixfreewayEspecially as the December holidays approach, more and more people start thinking about spending a bit of time in Phoenix, Arizona. Depending on where you are from it could seem like paradise there during the winter months, or like a waste of time. Plenty of people from Los Angeles make the trip each winter, and fortunately there are several decent options available for getting there. Let’s go over them below, shall we?

  • Miles apart: 364 miles / 586 kilometers
  • Driving distance: 372 miles / 599 kilometers

Quick summary

It’s actually quite a nice drive the first few times you take it, and the road is about as straight as can be, so you’ll get there fast. But still, there are usually great deals on flights to Phoenix so that’s the way to go for most people. You can often rent a car there cheaply as well, and save the wear and tear on your own wreck. Buses are cheap, but take a long time, and there is a way to get there on the train, sort of.

Flights between Los Angeles and Phoenix

Unless you love driving, this is probably the best way to go for most people. Quite a few airlines connect these cities nonstop, and US Airways (at least the former America West part of it) has a very busy hub at Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX) Airport, so there are cheap flights nearly every hour of the day. You can often get great deals out of any of the 5 major Los Angeles area airports, with prices starting around $60 each way if you buy in advance.

Flight time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Typical one-way fare: Starting at $60

Trains between Los Angeles and Phoenix

There used to be a train that went directly between these two cities, but lately the Amtrak service can only get you close. You can take the train that goes to Chicago and get off in Flagstaff, Arizona, but that takes 10 hours and then you have to take a bus from there to Phoenix, which adds another 3 hours or so. You can also take a train from LA to Maricopa, Arizona, which is a bit south of Phoenix, but from there you’d have to take a taxi as there is no scheduled service into Phoenix.

Long story short, as great as trains are, this route is so complicated and time consuming that it’s just not worth it.

Typical fare to Maricopa: Starting at $38 each way
Typical fare to Flagstaff: Starting at $59 each way
>>Amtrak website

Buses between Los Angeles and Phoenix

Greyhound provides service between several parts of Los Angeles and its main terminal near the airport in Phoenix. If you don’t have a car and your funds are low, this isn’t a terrible method, though there is a cheaper bus from another company. You’ll also be happy to know there are plenty of cheap Phoenix hotel rooms once you get there, as long as you avoid Scottsdale.

Typical fare: $40 online in advance, or $54 in person
Journey time: Around 8 hours each way

>>Greyhound website

GotoBus here is like an equivalent of the Chinatown buses in the Northeast. They go between mostly-Asian neighborhoods in many big cities, with surprisingly low fares.

Typical fare: $30 each way
Journey time: Around 6 hours each way
>> website

Driving between Los Angeles and Phoenix

As mentioned at the top, the driving mileage is about 380, depending on exactly where you leave from. The nice part is that it’s straight and easy, and the desert scenery can be quite nice the first time you experience it, unlike the far plainer scenery going from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.

There are no road tolls to worry about, unless you take that one cutoff down in Orange County, which you probably won’t. One highlight will be driving through that area near Palm Springs with thousands of windmills on either side of the road, as seen in the movie Rain Man, and elsewhere.

Los Angeles Transportation

Getting From Los Angeles to New York

Los Angeles is a large city located in California that is full of traffic and mayhem. However, many people love to visit on vacation. Los Angeles is home to an estimated 3,849,378 people, some of which are celebrities. Los Angeles has a number of beaches around the area. Some of these beaches are full of people that would be fit for any Hollywood movie, definitely a sight to see. Los Angeles offers hundreds of places to shop for the top name brand products. This city is ranked very high on the places to see list.

Why would anyone want to leave Los Angeles for New York, and what is the best way to get there? The answer is this; New York really isn’t that different from Los Angeles. New York just like Los Angeles is full of Traffic and even more mayhem. The population of the New York metro area is an unbelievable 19,490,297 people, far more than Los Angeles. This city also ranks very high on the places to see list. How do you get from Los Angeles to New York?

By Plane

By far the most popular way to get between these two famous cities is to fly. Since this route is so popular, quite a few airlines have nonstop flights going between the cities all day every day. If you can find a nonstop flight then it should take about 5 hours in the air, though of course the time spent at the airports will add many more hours to that. If the best deal is a flight that connects along the way, you could be looking at 7 to 10 hours from LA to NYC.

Because these two airports are so large and so busy, it is easy to find extremely cheap direct flights. It is not uncommon to find direct, round trip tickets for around $200 at the absolute minimum, but $300 roundtrip is a more normal cheap fare, and during peak travel seasons you might have to pay $500 roundtrip even for the cheapest flights.

Search tip: Los Angeles has 5 major airports and New York has 3, and you can check all combinations if you use the codes QLA to NYC instead of LAX to JFK, but unfortunately the QLA code (for all Los Angeles airports) doesn’t work in all search engines, so if it doesn’t then search for LAX to JFK and use the “search nearby airports” button.

By Bus

Maybe flying isn’t for you, if not you could take a bus. Buses leave out of Los Angeles heading for New York regularly. However, I must warn you, taking a bus ride from Los Angeles to New York will take almost 3 full days. The bus will stop in many different locations along the way, which makes the drive much longer than if you drove straight through to New York. This is more than likely the cheapest way to get from Los Angeles to New York, the cost for a bus ticket runs about $175 each way on Greyhound’s normal fare, but they do sometimes have promotional specials. You will have to add cost for food, drinks, snacks, or anything else you may need on the long ride.

Check the official Greyhound website for all the details, but be warned that the site is confusing and hard to use.

By train

If you fancy the idea of crossing the country by train, just like the Ricardos and Mertzs did when Ricky had ended his Hollywood stay on “I Love Lucy,” then you might be disappointed to know that it’s slow and way more expensive than you’d imagine. First off you take one train from Union Station near Downtown Los Angeles all the way to Chicago, which takes a bit over 42 hours. Then you change there for a different train that goes the rest of the way to New York City, and this leg takes just over 20 hours. There is usually a few hours between these trains, so you are looking at almost 3 full days to get from one city to the other.

The normal fare is around $240 each way, so it’s usually more expensive than flying as well. And of course that’s just for a normal seat in coach, which might not be so comfortable after the first 18 hours or so. Still, the scenery across most of the country is great, and it can be very relaxing as well. There are occasionally good promotional fares on Amtrak, so if you are lucky you might find something cheaper than this. All the information can be found on the official Amtrak website.

By Car

Next you could just drive yourself from Los Angeles to New York. This is another cheaper way to travel, but again you will have to add in for food items as well as hotel rooms you may need, for a break along the way. Driving will take about 43 hours of drive time, the trip is 2,788 miles one way. The fuel cost for the trip in a vehicle with 20 MPG will cost around $300 or more, depending on gas prices at that moment. Most of the drive will be on I40 East, where you will pass through Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. On this drive you will also go through Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

While taking this drive you will definitely want to take you’re time and enjoy the ride. With all these different states you will be driving through, there are numerous things to see on the way. The deserts of New Mexico and Arizona are actually quite beautiful, full of wild life. Just keep you’re eyes open, that way you can catch a glimpse of some natural wonders and beauty that you will definitely pass by on you’re way from Los Angeles to New York.

Panama travel guide

Bus Travel in Panama

If you are a traveler on a budget in Panama, buses are definitely the best way to get around. Not only will you be able to travel cheaply throughout the country, it is also a great way to see and enjoy the countryside in between. With only one in four households owning an automobile in the mostly rural country, Panamanian buses are an important and integral form of transportation for the small nation. While busing it may not be the fastest or most comfortable way to get around, it definitely provides an experience in itself. As locals usually travel by bus in between cities, (and it is usually best to do as the locals do) with a little patience and some preparation for the confusion and/or unexpected, buses are a great way to get from Point A to Point B.

Albrook Bus Terminal
From Panama City, you can get to almost any destination both within Panama and a few in Costa Rica from the Albrook Bus Terminal. Although overwhelming and sometimes confusing to figure out which bus leaves when and goes where, this is a one-stop terminal for bus travel anywhere in the country. However, if you ask enough people or simply say the name of your destination to enough people, you will eventually be pointed in the right direction and put on a bus. Most buses collect fares just before you arrive at your destination, so you can keep your money belts and wallets safely tucked away as your navigate through the people and buses.

Articles Los Angeles

The easiest way to LAX

300px-flyaway_union_station.jpgDepending on where you live, picking someone up at LAX ranges from a minor inconvenience to a major problem. Unless you’re extremely local, like El Segundo or Manhattan Beach, the prospect of getting to the airport means that you’ll spend a bunch of time sitting on the freeway probably during rush hour, and you’ll have to dodge in and out of traffic and figure out which terminal you’re supposed to be near.

The new FlyAway bus from LAX to Union Station solves all those logistical problems and might even save a friendship or two. The bus runs from Union Station to LAX every half hour and the return trip runs just as often. In the wee hours of the morning the frequency slows to once every hour.

The FlyAway bus costs $4, but if you’ve just arrived on a flight, the service is free from LAX to Union Station. The driver usually checks your baggage claim to determine if you are worthy of a free seat.