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Washington DC...2 teachers, 2 kids, a car...on a budget...

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Tampa Bay, FL
posts: 34
reviews: 37
Washington DC...2 teachers, 2 kids, a car...on a budget...

Hello, I would love some input. We are planning a trip over winter break (late Dec) up from Florida to the DC area. We have 2 children 7 and 9 traveling with us. I was wondering about the different areas, safety, is the metro the way to go for getting around?? Is there parking around there? When looking for a hotel so many subcatergories come up for location that I am afraid to make a mistake! :) So any input would be great...just a 2 day trip, so any must sees and hows the weather?

3 replies to this topic
U.S. expats
Destination Expert
for Windsor, London
posts: 16,613
reviews: 126
1. Re: Washington DC...2 teachers, 2 kids, a car...on a budget...

Are you planning on visiting Virginia, or Washington DC? If you want to see DC and have only two days, I would stay in the city, and not take the metro all the way in from suburban Virginia.

The museums in DC are free, and there is the zoo, although in December that might not hold much appeal. National Cathedral, all the Monuments, the White House (and Christmas Tree) and Capitol Building.

Tampa Bay, FL
posts: 34
reviews: 37
2. Re: Washington DC...2 teachers, 2 kids, a car...on a budget...

I'm thinking we are just going to do DC this time. Thanks for the info!!! So when you say city, is there specific locations you would choose? I did notice some hotels in Arlington were significantly cheaper and they said right across the street from the metro....do you still think that is better to stay in the city and walk everywhere we can?

Arlington, Virginia
posts: 8,201
reviews: 99
3. Re: Washington DC...2 teachers, 2 kids, a car...on a budget...

Parking at hotels in D.C. can take a chunk of money out of your budget. And depending on where the hotel is in D.C., you'd likely need to use Metro anyway to get to the tourist sites near the Mall.

If you find affordable accommodations in Arlington that you like, I see no reason not to stay there--lots of visitors to D.C. do just that. You'll want to choose a hotel that's near one of the Metro stations. In Arlington, that would be Crystal City, Rosslyn, Courthouse, Clarendon or Ballston.

Look at the Metro website to see what the fares will be and to see if any of the fare passes suit your purposes. www.wmata.com Because you are a family of 4, it may turn out to be cheaper to drive into D.C. and park in a garage. A good resource for parking rates is www.bestparking.com

FWIW, during a power outage this summer, we spent a couple nights at the Best Western Iwo Jima located a few blocks from the Rosslyn Metro station. Not only did they have good rates, but parking was free and they have an indoor pool which your kids might enjoy in December.

Finally, you might want to post your query on the Washington, D.C. forum if you have not already done so.

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