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Will our plan work? Advice please!

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Blackpool, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 31
Will our plan work? Advice please!

We (2 people) are taking the AMHS ferry from Bellingham in August and plan to rent a car for the day at SEATAC to visit the Boeing factory on the way. There only seems to be the option to return the car at Bellingham airport, not downtown. Some help please:

How long will it take from SEATAC hotels to the Boeing factory? Fri 23 Aug, probably a mid-morning tour.

How long will it take to get to Bellingham from Boeing?

I've read that taxi is the only way to get from the airport to the ferry - is this right? How much approx will it cost? And how long will it take? (Fri afternoon)

The ferry leaves at 6pm - do we need to do an early check-in as we have a cabin booked?

Above all, will this plan work?

Thanks for any comments!

Edited: 7:41 am, April 11, 2013
seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
posts: 15,595
reviews: 84
1. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

here is a link to the ferry terminal

wa-portofbellingham.civicplus.com/index.aspx…

they do not list car rental which seems unusual, however I'd call them to see if some company offers a shuttle service. Most companies have a 'local' office somewhere besides the airport. Its 45-60 minutes to Boeing factory in Everett. Perhaps an hr drive to Bellingham. I'd guesstimate the airport to ferry to be about

20 minutes. Overall your plan is very doable.

Washington - the...
posts: 330
reviews: 14
2. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

I agree, the plan is doable. The price for a one way rental SEATAC to Bellingham is usually about twice the price of the reverse, are you flying in to SEATAC that morning? If not, then check into a downtown to downtown car rental (Enterprise maybe) for pick up/drop off - that way you can probably get a free shuttle from the company to the ferry. You are correct, a taxi (about 20-30 dollars) is the way to get from the airport to the ferry terminal (the local bus does not stop at the airport) if you have to go that route.

Since you have a cabin you won't have to check in as early as the folks that run for a good spot on the deck, but I would check with the ferry service on what they recommend for walk ons with cabin.

Blackpool, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 31
3. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Thanks very much - I was also looking at the port of Bellingham site & couldn't find car rental links. I've also looked at the online sites of all the major rental outfits and none show availability to drop anywhere other than the airport, but calling them direct may show other options.

It looks to be a lot cheaper to rent a car & arrive at Boeing ourselves, do the tour then travel on - & we are not at the mercy of a fixed timetable.We have 1.5 days in Seattle: if we do a group tour on the full day then get the Airporter to B'ham the following day the cost is approx $200. Renting a car, doing the scheduled tour then a taxi is about $90 + fuel. A no-brainer!

Bellingham, WA
posts: 417
reviews: 61
4. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

There is a downtown Hertz office which you can call at 360-527-1999. They are closed on weekends though. That would be shorter taxi ride if they don't offer to deliver you.

Blackpool, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 31
5. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Thanks Auntiem - hadn't considered downtown/downtown as we arrive early evening after a 13hr journey & thought we'd stay near the airport as it would be easier. But it may make more sense to do that - just depends if we can face the hassle of getting downtown!

Our plan so far is to stay the night (all suggestions gratefully received), spend the full day on public transport seeing the Space Needle, Pike St market & anywhere else that comes recommended, stay the night then collect a rental car next day to drive to Bellingham via Boeing.

Thanks for the Hertz reference comcox - I'll have a look at the downtown options - I know staying there would be preferable but we're trying not to spend TOO much on a place just to lay our heads & would like somewhere with a shuttle (I don't deal too well with longhaul flying and its effects!).

Seattle, Washington
Destination Expert
for Seattle
posts: 3,865
6. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Because of additional taxes and fees imposed for airport car pick-ups, you might find that it's actually cheaper - all in - to take a taxi or towncar from the airport to a downtown Seattle hotel (around $45 in either case) and then pick up your hire car at a downtown location when it's time to leave. The cost of the taxi/limo might well be negated by the savings on car hire. Plus, if you want to explore downtown - Pike Market etc. - you can do it without having to pay ($$$) for downtown parking while you do so. Leave your bags at the hotel while you explore, pick up the car, go fetch the bags, and off you go.

From downtown the Boeing plant tour takes around 30 min. Take I-5 to WA 526 (the "Boeing Freeway").

Blackpool, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 31
7. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Thanks very much, some good ideas here.

I've emailed some car rentals to ask about one way drops - online it seems it's ok to do Bellingham to Seattle but not the other way so I've asked directly.

We'll look at downtown hotels if anyone will let us do one way but otherwise it may be the airport area. We quite enjoy using different transport systems when on holiday so I think we'll still use them - I fancy a monorail trip, there are none in England except at theme parks!

Thanks to everyone for all the help.

seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
posts: 15,595
reviews: 84
8. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

It's easy to take the light rail into downtown and then get a car rental. For a one day rental however that savings is not going to be too great. I did the Boeing tour today And I think you'll find it quite interesting I believe the cost is now $20.

Bellingham, WA
posts: 417
reviews: 61
9. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Enterprise also has a downtown Bellingham location, call them at (360) 733-4363.

Blackpool, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 31
10. Re: Will our plan work? Advice please!

Thanks both - I've emailed Enterprise & Avis. Enterprise say they will do a one way drop between the downtowns, I just need to call the reservation office.

However, I think we will be staying out at the airport due to cheaper hotel prices plus having a shuttle from Seatac versus taxi ride to downtown when we arrive & more expensive hotel - we're there for 2 nights before getting the ferry so its just somewhere to lay our heads. I wish we had more time to explore the city but not this trip.

Thanks for the comment about Boeing - hubby is very into engineering etc & it sounds right up his street. Roll on August!