Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > America - USA > Los Angeles
Reload this Page >

Consolidated "Getting to/from _____ in the Los Angeles area" thread

Consolidated "Getting to/from _____ in the Los Angeles area" thread

Old Apr 22, 13, 8:21 am
  #496  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: SNA, LAX, PHL, NYC
Programs: AA Executive Platinum, Marriott Bonvoy Titanium
Posts: 663
Originally Posted by jackal View Post
This. It's not much hassle...It really is quite painless and definitely worth saving $40-50 over a shuttle, and you have more than plenty of time.
Plus you can have control of a car with plenty of time to do an In-N-Out run :-)
Consultette is offline  
Old Apr 22, 13, 8:51 am
  #497  
Moderator Hilton Honors, Travel News, West, The Suggestion Box, Smoking Lounge & DiningBuzz
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Programs: Honors Diamond, Hertz Presidents Circle, National Exec Elite
Posts: 35,484
Originally Posted by Consultette View Post
Plus you can have control of a car with plenty of time to do an In-N-Out run :-)
This!

I just checked for a random day in May for a rental at Avis SNA-LAX for 5 hours using AWD A074800. The total for a full-size is ~$50.
cblaisd is offline  
Old Apr 29, 13, 6:46 am
  #498  
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: XNA
Programs: AA Gold, AS, HA, CX, AF, BA, UA, HH
Posts: 163
Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
This!

I just checked for a random day in May for a rental at Avis SNA-LAX for 5 hours using AWD A074800. The total for a full-size is ~$50.
Going to take a chance and rent a car. Got a full size from Thrifty for $32.19 total (all fees/taxes included and no drop off fee!) plus fuel. If it works out, that will be a pretty cheap trip for 4 people!
elc2414 is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 4:49 pm
  #499  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Now in SLC
Programs: DL FO 1MM, MR LT Titanium
Posts: 3,737
Palmdale to LAX

I have a flight at 6:45 PM on Thursday from LAX. What time do I need to leave Palmdale to get there? I do need to return a rental car.
LoganFlyer is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 5:57 pm
  #500  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: PHX
Programs: UA *Alliance
Posts: 4,534
Originally Posted by LoganFlyer View Post
I have a flight at 6:45 PM on Thursday from LAX. What time do I need to leave Palmdale to get there? I do need to return a rental car.
Any chance you could drop the rental car off at Union Station in downtown LA and take the Flyaway bus? Otherwise I wouldn't leave any later than 2pm but that might be a bit conservative.

Anybody you can carpool with?
SWCPHX is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:09 pm
  #501  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA Plat, DL, AS, UA, IHG Plat
Posts: 2,312
I assume this is a domestic flight? 4.5 hours sounds about right. Budget 2 hours (minimum!) for driving, at least 45 minutes for rental car return, and up to 30 minutes for TSA. That leaves you with about 75 minutes before departure time if everything goes smoothly. Traffic on Thursday afternoon on CA-14/I-5/I-405 from Palmdale to LAX will be murder... And there isn't really a better route to go.
bzcat is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:19 pm
  #502  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SGF
Programs: AS, AA, UA, AGR (former 75K, GLD, 1K, and S+), now an Elite Peon
Posts: 22,998
Originally Posted by bzcat View Post
I assume this is a domestic flight? 4.5 hours sounds about right. Budget 2 hours (minimum!) for driving, at least 45 minutes for rental car return, and up to 30 minutes for TSA. That leaves you with about 75 minutes before departure time if everything goes smoothly. Traffic on Thursday afternoon on CA-14/I-5/I-405 from Palmdale to LAX will be murder... And there isn't really a better route to go.
2 hours for driving is not an unreasonable estimate, but I don't know what car rental company you use at LAX--I've never had (even among the budget companies like Dollar and Thrifty) a return take more than 20 minutes from arrival on the lot to curbside drop-off. 30 minutes for TSA is a decent guess for a non-elite, but if the OP is elite, 15 minutes is a generous estimate (depending on the terminal). And I, for one, prefer not to sit at the departure gate for 40 minutes before my flight starts boarding.

If the OP is the super-cautious type who likes to leave lots of buffer and plan for contingencies, then maybe, but in my view, he can easily shave an hour off of your suggested time and still have ~30 minutes of "just in case" buffer before his seat is released. Up to the each individual to decide how comfortable he or she is--I just wanted to present the opposite option.

Originally Posted by elc2414 View Post
Going to take a chance and rent a car. Got a full size from Thrifty for $32.19 total (all fees/taxes included and no drop off fee!) plus fuel. If it works out, that will be a pretty cheap trip for 4 people!
How did it work out for you?
jackal is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:28 pm
  #503  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA Plat, DL, AS, UA, IHG Plat
Posts: 2,312
45 minutes is the typical time it takes from leaving I-405 or I-105 exit to terminal. It takes about 20 minutes to get to most rental car return lots from the freeway and another 20~25 minutes to return the car and reach the terminal by bus.

So 45 minutes is the correct time to tack on because many out of town visitors do not realize it takes as much as 20 minutes to reach the rental car lots once they exit the freeway. They think they are "at the airport" when they exit at La Cienega or Century Blvd... but there is another 20 minute journey in local (rush hour!) traffic to go.
bzcat is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:36 pm
  #504  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Now in SLC
Programs: DL FO 1MM, MR LT Titanium
Posts: 3,737
Yikes! Wasn't thinking it would take quite that long; guess I was hoping for a "reverse commute" kind of thing but should have known that wouldn't happen in L.A. To answer the questions:

1. It's a domestic flight (LAX-ANC).
2. Carpooling isn't going to happen. I wish.
3. Would driving to Union Station, dropping off a car, and then taking the train really be quicker?
4. I'll be flying AS and I have DL status, which should let me through the elite security line. I also have PreCheck which I've successfully gotten on an AS ticket before, but of course I know it can't be guaranteed that I'll clear PreCheck on any given ticket.

Already looking up my backup options as I don't think I can leave Palmdale before 3 PM (though from what Jackal is saying above, I might still make it; I don't mind cutting it close.) I did get the gas service option on the rental car (Avis), so at least I don't have to worry about that.

Last edited by LoganFlyer; May 20, 13 at 6:41 pm
LoganFlyer is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:45 pm
  #505  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: PHX
Programs: UA *Alliance
Posts: 4,534
Originally Posted by LoganFlyer View Post
3. Would driving to Union Station, dropping off a car, and then taking the train really be quicker?
Well, it would at least give you carpool lane access. And, arguably, the 5 into downtown and Union Station from Palmdale might be better than the 405 all the way through San Fernando Valley and over the Sepulveda Pass.
SWCPHX is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 6:46 pm
  #506  
Moderator: Travel Safety/Security, Travel Tools, California, Los Angeles; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: VNY | BUR | LAX
Programs: AAdvantage | MileagePlus
Posts: 18,102
A couple of weeks ago, it took us an hour and forty five minutes - that's driving time to the parking lots - to get from the west San Fernando Valley to LAX for a 4:00 pm flight. Construction delays in the Sepulveda Pass and two accidents on the 405 near the 10 and the 90 did not help matters. Add about 75-90 minutes to get to the Valley from Palmdale.

P.S. Going through Union Station will only prolong the misery.
TWA884 is offline  
Old May 20, 13, 8:44 pm
  #507  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SGF
Programs: AS, AA, UA, AGR (former 75K, GLD, 1K, and S+), now an Elite Peon
Posts: 22,998
Originally Posted by bzcat View Post
45 minutes is the typical time it takes from leaving I-405 or I-105 exit to terminal. It takes about 20 minutes to get to most rental car return lots from the freeway and another 20~25 minutes to return the car and reach the terminal by bus.

So 45 minutes is the correct time to tack on because many out of town visitors do not realize it takes as much as 20 minutes to reach the rental car lots once they exit the freeway. They think they are "at the airport" when they exit at La Cienega or Century Blvd... but there is another 20 minute journey in local (rush hour!) traffic to go.
If you say so, but I have NEVER had it take more than 10 minutes to get the mile and a half from La Cienega at the 405 to Hertz, Dollar, Thrifty, or Alamo. 15 minutes if you include stopping at the Mobil at La Cienega and Florence.

The 405 can get very backed up at the Sepulveda Pass (exacerbated lately by construction), but southbound is better in the afternoon rush hour than northbound. Still, I'd look at traffic reports (and keep KNX 1070 on in the car). Even with a bit of traffic, though, it wouldn't be worth going through downtown, although if I saw it was mostly clear, I'd consider the 14>5>210>2>5>110>105 IF I had others with me and we could use the carpool lanes on the Harbor Freeway...although I believe that now requires a switchable FasTrak transponder and a three-person minimum. But even then, likely the straight shot down the 405 would prove to be at the worst equal and at the best slightly faster than going out of the way downtown, even though there is never anything even remotely resembling traffic on the Foothill and Glendale freeways.

In fact, I chose the Ventura Freeway to the 405 when coming from Toluca Lake last time versus going downtown, and it worked out fine.
jackal is offline  
Old May 21, 13, 4:57 pm
  #508  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA Plat, DL, AS, UA, IHG Plat
Posts: 2,312
Originally Posted by LoganFlyer View Post
Yikes! Wasn't thinking it would take quite that long; guess I was hoping for a "reverse commute" kind of thing but should have known that wouldn't happen in L.A. To answer the questions:

1. It's a domestic flight (LAX-ANC).
2. Carpooling isn't going to happen. I wish.
3. Would driving to Union Station, dropping off a car, and then taking the train really be quicker?
4. I'll be flying AS and I have DL status, which should let me through the elite security line. I also have PreCheck which I've successfully gotten on an AS ticket before, but of course I know it can't be guaranteed that I'll clear PreCheck on any given ticket.

Already looking up my backup options as I don't think I can leave Palmdale before 3 PM (though from what Jackal is saying above, I might still make it; I don't mind cutting it close.) I did get the gas service option on the rental car (Avis), so at least I don't have to worry about that.
There is really no "reverse commute" in LA... We have a poly-centric metro area and people live and work in all different directions. I-405 is busy in both directions throughout the day and night. It opens up a bit past 9 PM...

Going to Union Station at rush hour won't really help you because you are so far away in Palmdale. It will take at least 2 hours so you might as well just drive to LAX.

Since you are Delta elite and precheck, it will only take you 5 maybe 10 minutes top to get pass TSA. You should still budget about 3 hours total transit time so you will be cutting it pretty close.
bzcat is offline  
Old May 22, 13, 1:03 am
  #509  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
Hyatt Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: QLA
Programs: SBUX Gold
Posts: 14,507
I think Union Station is out, it won't help.

Crazy idea... what about taking the Flyaway Bus from Van Nuys Airport? Buses leave every 30 minutes and it says travel time is "35-60 minutes." But, with no Avis counter at VNY, you'd have to drop off your car to the closest location about 5-10 minutes away and take a cab back to VNY. In case you wanted to research:
http://www.lawa.org/welcome_lax.aspx?id=4697
IceTrojan is offline  
Old May 22, 13, 8:56 am
  #510  
Original Member
 
Join Date: May 1998
Location: The shape-shifting urban sprawl that is El Lay. FT member #71.
Programs: UA Platinum & MM; DL & AA credit card dirt status; Hilton Diamond; Marriott Fool's Gold
Posts: 4,606
Originally Posted by bzcat View Post
I-405 is busy in both directions throughout the day and night. It opens up a bit past 9 PM...
Maybe until about 10:15pm. Don't forget most nights there is some level of graveyard shift construction going on between the 10 and 101. Often it is down to two lanes in spots.
Craig6z is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread