I will be driving by myself from Boston to central Illinois in less than two weeks. I'm thinking of breaking it down to a 2-day trip, since the drive takes over 17 hours, according to MapQuest. I'm trying to figure out what to do about hotel accommodations for the one night that I'll need lodging. Where would be a good stopping point for the night? Ohio? Western Pennsylvania? I'm looking for some place that's safe and not too expensive. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I used to drive from Washington DC to Central Missouri when I was in college. I always liked to stop at Terra Hutte, Indiana. Lots of hotels and places to dine there. But I am not sure if that would be too far since that’s right on the Illinois border.
It’s hard to suggest a place unless I know the route you are taking though (what interstates, etc.)
Steubenville, OH. :)
Seriously, though, it depends on what route you're taking. Are you coming down to I-70 and cutting through Ohio, or are you taking I-80 (and paying the tolls!)? Wheeling, WV, is right on I-70 and would be about halfway. Anywhere in the Ohio Valley is probably going to be cheaper than most places as the loss of the steel industry has hit the area pretty hard.
Thank you for the replies so far. According to MapQuest, I'm to take I-90 along Lake Eerie, then I-71, and then I-70. I wouldn't mind staying somewhere close to the lake! But that may get a bit expensive.
Looking at your route, it seems that the Erie, PA area might be a good stopping point. From a quick look at orbitz.com, it appears there are plenty of reasonably priced ($60-$80) places to stay.
Pick up a Room Saver on your way (at all the oases) or go to their website beforehand to print up a coupon of hotels in the area where you plan on stopping. Go to tripadvisor.com for reviews of the hotels you searched and found coupons for. Trust me, you will save with a room saver coupon (I've used them many times).
Got a pup tent? State parks are the best lodging deal around! (Yes, I'm a tightwad.)
You might want to avoid Columbus, Ohio since it was recently named the bedbug capital of the US, even beating out New York City.
If you do pick out a hotel or motel in advance, you might want to check read some of the online reviews. Google makes this easy, because if you pick a city they will pull together links to reviews of the various hotels and motels there.
Thanks everyone for the advice. I ended up booking a hotel in Cleveland that I have stayed at elsewhere, though I did not know it was a chain at the time.