One way mileage: 1,290 (Garland to Cadillac)
Total miles driven: 3,294
Total gallons of gas: 129
Avg. price per gallon: $2.94
Total gasoline purchases: $380.40
Gas stops for Odyssey: 4 (one per state: AR, MO, IN, MI)
Travel Cost for 4 persons Cost Time (1 way)
Flight costs include auto rental ($300) and airport parking ($84).
Flight times include drive to airport (1 hr), checkin and security (2 hr), rental car pickup and drive from GRR to Cadillac (2 hr).
Flight, direct ($300 ea) $1,584 7 hrs Flight, 1 hop ($200 ea) $1,184 9 hrs Auto – Honda Odyssey (fuel) $300 16 hrs
On the drive to Michigan, we hit snow in Lansing and saw almost a dozen cars in the ditches on I-96. The GRR airport was already shut down so if we had flown, we’d have been diverted to another airport and stranded with many other holiday travelers.
During our stay, I made a day trip from Cadillac to Lansing, hitting snow near G.R. on the way down. The entire return trip was in near whiteout conditions. Cadillac gained 8 inches of snow during my half-day absence. Kayla now confidently asserts that if it is snowing, we’re in Michigan.
The return to Texas was similarly exciting. When we left Michigan at 8 PM, a winter storm was in progress and the temperature had plummeted. The traffic grooves within each lane of the freeway had iced over. For those daring enough to drive “in their lane,” the roads were treacherous. We saw two tractor trailers, an Indiana police cruiser, and an assortment of other vehicles inadvertently parked in the snow filled ditches along the highway. Progress was slow but once past Indianapolis, the ice was gone and the roads cleared up. We drove through the night while the kids slept, arriving around 2 PM.
It is easy to imagine that flying would have been better. But both flights would have been delayed, erasing the time benefits. And when flying, we are separated from our luggage, making it onerous to placate travel weary companions. Driving was definitely the right choice.