Author Topic: Which Airport?  (Read 3987 times)

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Offline Soulboy#1

Which Airport?
« on: October 29, 2016, 01:50:26 pm »
Hi all.

Ok so I'm all set for my first tour on the transam rail. Im in London and plan to flight out to the states for a May departure at Yorktown.
Is Washington the nearest airport to the start of the trail? Would be interesting to hear some feedback of how where others flew into,
particularly happy to hear from any Brits/Europeans in here?

From there, how did everybody get to the start of the trail?

Thanks in advance

« Last Edit: October 29, 2016, 02:29:42 pm by Soulboy#1 »

Offline jamawani

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2016, 04:33:27 pm »
The nearest airport is Newport News - only a few miles away.
Norfolk is a bit further away and across the harbor.
Richmond is still further, but perhaps, easier connection than Norfolk.
But I don't think any of these have non-stop flights from London.

Washington metro area has 3 airports - Dulles, Reagan, and BWI.
Although BWI is furthest away, it has a direct Amtrak rail link to Williamsburg, VA.
Reagan means shuttling stuff downtown to Union Station.
Same for Dulles which is way out from DC.

Of course, Dulles has the magnificent Saarinen-designed terminal.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2016, 04:39:09 pm »
Newport News is the closest airport to the start of the TransAm (only 9 miles), but it's not an international airport.

How to get to the start of the TransAm is perhaps one of the most oft-discussed topics on these forums. There are many ways, involving planes only, one-way rental cars, trains, buses and just riding to the start. It has been often discussed here how you might ride from Dulles to the start, or to Richmond if you don't necessarily need to go to the very start (perish the thought!!).

It's usually a personal preference. There are cost and time tradeoffs too. Here's some reading to get you started. There are many, many more.

Offline RonK

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2016, 07:21:04 pm »
Here's some reading to get you started. There are many, many more.
Indeed - a tip, do a search on Yorktown and you'll likely find the answers to questions you don't know you need to ask yet. ;)
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...

Offline Soulboy#1

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2016, 08:58:23 am »
Thank you for all of your input, its appreciated. Im flying in from London and the better times and prices bring me into Dulles. Is train service between Dulles and Union square downtown that allows bikes on it?

Offline hon_cho

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2016, 09:22:52 am »
Unfortunately,  the metro service that could potentially get you and your bike from Dulles Airport to Union Station won't yet be operation by the beginning of your trip. 

As others have mentioned,  this topic has been written about numerous times on the forums.  I live in the Washington DC area about 25 miles from Dulles airport and Dulles is rather inconvenient to access by public transportation other than taxi/uber.   It can be done,  but not in a time efficient manner. 

If you drive,  I would suggest a one way car rental from Dulles to Yorktown.  The cost is about $150 plus fuel expense and it will be the most time efficient way to get to the starting point. 

You may send me a message via adventure cycling if you have any specific questions about getting around in the Washington DC area.  I would offer to help you get to Yorktown but I'm not sure where I'll be come next may. 

Offline hon_cho

Re: Which Airport?
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2016, 08:52:14 pm »
I took a moment to look on the Washington transit agency's web page to see what their trip planner says about getting from Dulles Airport to Union Station to catch an Amtrak train.    Their is bus service from Dulles to L'Enfant Plaza in Washington.   You could transfer from the bus to the subway the subway to Union station  but it is only 1.3 miles from L'Enfant Plaza so  you could ride/walk the last leg.  Unfortunately,  you can't take bikes on the subway from 7-10am and from 4-7pm Monday thru Friday. 

There are two trains a day from Washington DC to Williamsburg.  One at 7:30am and another at 2:30pm.  With the bike.  It's a bit less than a four hour train ride to Williamsburg.   

I looked at flights from Heathrow to Dulles on American Airlines and British Air and the arrival times at Dulles appear such that it may be difficult to arrive and travel by train to the Williamsburg area on the same day.  However,  since I'm unfamiliar with your specific travel plans,  this may not be a problem. 

The joy of planning the start of your adventure!