Thursday, June 5, 2008

Alaska....

So I have finally started booking for Alaska - only to realize that there is no way that financially I can pull this off. Gas is over $4.50 Canadian in Edmonton right now, even worse further north. I do not have enough jobs between now and then to fund it. On top of that, you have my car which is falling apart and a drive that is about 24 hours long without Triple A or cell service.... might even be a few dirt roads to deal with as well. After figuring gas, lodging, food, and the time it is going to take just to get up there and back.... the trip is going to cost about $1500-1600 roundtrip... and that is about $1000 that I cannot produce...

... so I started thinking about other options. Been checking out cruise lines. Found a few that have decent reviews. You can do a 7-day trip $600-900 total. So here is my question... do you think it would be cheating to turn in my wheels for a week and jump on a cheap cruise line out of Port Vancouver? Or do you think I should try to raise the money, fix my car, buy a temporary Canadian cell phone, and just say to hell with it and drive for a week?

I ask you because I am completely torn between both options.... Looking at the drive on google makes me cringe but the cruise line
seems like cheating... I am not sure what to do. I need to decide by tomorrow at the latest, though...

17 comments:

Nathaniel said...

As a native Alaskan, you don't want to drive up there. Plus, most of the cool places [in Southeast] are on islands so you couldn't drive there anyway.

Look into catching a ferry out of Bellingham Washington. That'll get you up to to Sitka, Juneau, Ketchikan, etc. Then, if you want to go to the Anchorage area, you might be able to catch a ferry from Juneau (I'm not sure if there's still one that goes across) or hopefully get a cheap Alaska Air flight out of Juneau.

Nathaniel said...

One quick note: the ferry system is the "Alaska State Marine Highway". So, if you take a boat, you're technically still on the road.

PD said...

It does not sound like cheating to me. You want to go to Alaska, it looks like you have found another option, the way there looks rough & add money needed, its the right move. Do it, take the boat up. Think about it, let some else do the driving, & give the car a breather. Everybody wins!

Totally dumb, random question: Have you been able to get any reading done lately?
PD

Stewie Hues said...

You aren't cheating anyone but yourself if you don't take the cruise. You and your trusty car nee da break from each other. Plus you need a chance to relax.

We all need to remember to treat ourselves from time to time.

Trevor said...

Hey London,
I agree with the last post. Plus don’t underestimate the distances and the unforgiving land between cities in the north. And why be eaten alive by some of the biggest bugs you’ve ever seen, when you could be drinking and eating great food on a warm ship. Yep, my vote is for the ship.

D. Manny said...

If they're your rules who's to say what's cheating? (I'm an enabler, yeah I know...)

Tracy said...

Cheating!? I'm sure everything we do could be considered cheating by someone's standards. So I don't think you should worry about that!

There is nothing wrong with taking breaks or straying from the plan. So, my advice is to take a different kind of adventure for awhile and go on the cruise!
I'm sure you'll meet great people and find new opportunities while on board :) You can relax and enjoy Alaska without worries of being stranded or running out of money. And, it might be the best thing for your partner in crime...your car ; ) Also, I've heard that Alaskan cruises are amazing!

I know it must be hard to decide, so just listen to what your gut tells you. You have great instincts! Just don't join the army. LOL =)

James said...

I think that the answer would depend on why you are going and what you expect to get out of it.

Do you have enough shoots lined up to make a business trip worthwhile? Or are you sightseeing?

What would you do on the cruise? Is that a cruise to Alaska? or a cruise to nowhere?

I would be concerned about that long a drive in what is essentially wasteland, even with a car in tip-top condition.

Bottom line: If it were me, I'd spend time in the Oregon/Washington forests and save myself the expense and worry of driving all the way up and back. And a cruise where I could just chill and pull myself up to the buffet wouldn't be bad either.

Jim in Huntsville

Kev said...

Echo Nathaniel. The ferry rides are more fun than cruises anyway (at least from my perspective - I hate cruise ship regimentation). And you can always tend bar for a while if you need to raise the money to get back :)

whatagy said...

Do the cruise, take some time off and enjoy yourself.

Dallas said...

I'd do the Alaskan cruise over driving to Edmonton any day.

Although the Rockies are amazing, and the drive from Vancouver to Alberta is really scenic...Edmonton is a pretty anti-climactic end to your road trip through the mountains!

Mikey... said...

I don't care how you do it... you NEED to go to Alaska. I'm usually in Homer, AK this time of year, but have some family obligations in AL instead. You will not regret seeing the beauty of Alaska.

Mikey... said...

I don't care how you do it... you NEED to go to Alaska. I'm usually in Homer, AK this time of year, but have some family obligations in AL instead. You will not regret seeing the beauty of Alaska.

Bobolink said...

CAA will honour your AAA membership in Canada.

Alfred said...

DO THE CRUISE. BEST MONEY YOU WILL EVER SPEND.

Wifey and I have done 2 cruises so far, and both were worth twice what we spent. And someday we plan an Alaskan Cruise. This is the best time of year to go too.

London Andrews said...

Alright - so I thought it all out - and although the ferry would be the best way to really see the area. I think the cruise is a better idea.... one: I have never been on a cruise so I think it would be a great experience. Two: We get to get off the ship and walk around for a few hours in each city, so at least it is not all ship-deck the entire time. Cheap. Affordable. I can still do Alaska, which is important to me - and it is going to waste an entire week so I can catch up on my bookings (because I am really incredibly behind right now)....

... so that it is: Alaska cruise liner - here I come!

Benny the Icepick said...

WTF? You and I were in Edmonton at the same time?! Bizarre.

Glad to see you're still doing well!