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Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

North West, England
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Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

I have actually booked a Coach Tour to New England with 3 nights stay at the Midtown Hotel, this will in reality be 5 nights in Boston as the other two nights are incorporated into the beginning of the tour. All this is early September 2007. Well cutting a long story short I am fuming at the tour company, they have twice made changes, one to the flight, now the hotel for the 2 nights and saying transfer's are now not included when they said they would be. I think they are trying to rip me off so I will probably cancel.

I am wondering now to do it myself as the other tours I have looked at are mega expensive. I am a bit worried about hiring a car as I will be traveling on my own and the only time I have driven in the US is with my family! My plan is this, spend 4 nights at the Midtown, then get the bus to Hyannis and stay for 3 nights to do Matha's Vineyard and Nantucket. Then get the bus to Provincetown and stay for 3 or 4 nights there (whale watching) I know I can get the ferry direct to Boston for my return flight home. Can anyone tell me if this is feasible and practical or will it be a lot of messing about with luggage. Would there be enough to do in Provincetown for 3/4 days, after the Whale Watching - I am not really a beach person, but then again I don't want to stay really in another place because of moving the luggage etc.and I think it would be relatively easy to get back to Boston from there. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank You.

Boston
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1. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

If I add up the times correctly, you'll be spending 6-8 days on Cape Cod and the Islands. For that length of time, I really think you will appeciate a car. There is little, if any, public transportation on the Cape and you will want to see, I'm sure, The Cape Cod National Seashore, antiquing on Route 6A, seeing some of the quaint towns in the area. For all that, you really need a car. My personal opinion is that you wouldn't want to do both islands in one trip. Pick one and really get to see it. Driving on the Cape is not difficult. There's really only one highway and it's relatively small. Most back roads are easy driving and not as narrow as you would encounter in parts of the Isles. And all the rental cars have automatic transmissions, so shifting with the "wrong" hand won't be an issue.

By the way, while there's nothing major wrong with the Midtown Hotel, I wouldn't insist it had to be THE hotel. there are better hotels you could get at a better price this far out. Anyway, you'll see.

Good luck!!

Derby, UK
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2. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Hi andiamo ssdac

Have you looked at the New England tours offered by these companies?

- Archers Direct: http://www.archersdirect.co.uk/

- Travelsphere: http://www.travelsphere.co.uk/

- Travelscope: http://www.travelscope.co.uk/

They all offer very reasonably priced holiday. I've travelled with all of them in the past and I've had good experiences with them.

U2fan

boston, ma
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3. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

It would really help to have a car on Cape Cod. Despite what most people think, there is local public transportation on the Cape, but there are a lot of places you can't get to by bus. You don't need a car in Boston though. I would arrange to rent a car in Hyannis. Hyannis has a new transportation center where I'm sure you could arrange to pick up a rental. It would be cheaper too, as there is about an addition $15/day in taxes and fees if you pick up your car in Boston. If you are planning to be on Cape Cod in September (an excellent time of year by the way), be sure to double check Ptown - Boston ferry schedules. The high speed ferries will be running (there are two companies), but some trips may be dropped after Labor Day, the first Monday in September.

For information on public transportation on Cape Cod -- buses, ferries, air -- try http://www.capecodtransit.org/ . Unfortunately the web site navigation was designed by a complete incompetent but if you keep at it you can find information.

North West, England
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268 posts
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4. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Hi to everyone who replied to my post.

To the U2 Fan, I have travelled with Travelsphere many times and had some brilliant holidays. Also got the Archers brochure and am considering their tour actually as they do go to Provincetown so I can do the Whale Watching. The only reason I havent booked with either of these companies is because I wanted to be based on Boston for at least 4 nights at the beginning so I can have a really good look around. The tours above either go from New York (which I have been to 3 times) or only go to Boston for one day which is a shame, anyway if I decide to stick with a tour I would probably go with Archers as you do seem to see quite a few places. By the way, the tour I have booked with is Jetsave - the dispute is still going on, they have appalling customer services, so dont ever book with them. I think their chances have run out now so I am probably going to cancel and give my money to someone else.

With regard to the nice replies about the car. I did think of trying to hire a car in Hyannis actually, the bus from Boston to the transportation centre in Hyannis seems to run on a regular basis. I would have no qualms at all about driving around that part of the Cape. There is no way either I would ever dream of trying to drive a car in Boston. The bit that puts me off really is picking the car up say at Logan and setting off on the Freeways with practically no experience of automatic cars or driving on the "other" side of the road. Is it pretty straightforward to get from say Logan to the Cape?

Sometimes I dont know whay I am worrying about all this, maybe I should just do it!!! Considering it's not even until next year either!

Thanks for the tip about the Ferry from Provincetown, I have looked at the schedules before but didnt realise that they cut down after Labor Day - when is that?

Regards

North West, England
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5. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Sorry, you have already told me when Labor Day is. Thanks.

Derby, UK
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6. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Hi andiamo ssdac

I can highly recommend Archers Direct - I've been on three holidays with them, and all were excellent. I particularly like the fact that they use local guides.

Archers also allow you to extend your holiday. Have you asked them if you could stay in Boston for a few extra days at the end of your holiday, or maybe before the tour starts?

I've never heard of Jetsave, but after reading your experience I think I'll give them a miss...

U2fan

Boston
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7. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Andiamo,

I understand your hesitance about renting a car here. However, let me put your mind at ease for at least one aspect. You do not need any time to "adjust" to an automatic transmission. That's the reason we recommend them not only here for Europeans, but for Americans driving in the Isles. There is no clutch and essentially there are only three gears that you use: Park (to do as it says - it locks the car so it doesn't move), Drive (to move ahead), and Reverse. It really is simple and one thing you really don't need to worry about. Driving on the "wrong" side of the road is more problematic.

Now, in terms of the Airport to the Cape, I must be honest and say it's not exactly simple. Leaving the Airport, you take the Ted Williams Tunnel (I-90 west) to I-93 South to Route 3 South and then follow the signs to Route 6 towards Hyannis. Then exit at Route 132 to wherever you are staying.

If that gets you nervous, perhaps renting and returning the car in Hyannis makes more sense. That would mean taking the bus to Hyannis either from the Airport or from Boston. Alternatively, you could take the ferry from Boston to Provincetown and rent the car from there.

Driving on the Cape I think you'll find very laid back and much easier, so perhaps this is the right solution for you. I belie ve that either way, you'll really appreciate having the car on the Cape.

North West, England
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268 posts
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8. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

Hi U2 Fan

Thanks for reply. Still considering Archers, although it does leave from New York and you can extend your stay in New York at the end which I would probably do although I have been before. Pity it's not Boston. Anyway I will keep my options open.

Hi Alanm

Thanks for all your tips about the car - like I said I have driven in Florida so suppose I would soon get he hang of the automatic. Think its a good point though either hiring in Hyannis or Provincetown. I will have to see. Anyway, I must stop boring people with it all - I am even boring myself now! The holiday is a long time off so I have plenty of time to consider what to do for the best. I am off to Tallin in Estonia for a few days at the beginning of December, got a lovely hotel with an ice bar. I believe it's a beautiful city, so hopefully it will snow and it will be fab!

9. Re: Public Transport Boston - Cape Cod

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