True cost of driving to Florida from Toronto

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 14th, 2018 11:48 am
Deal Guru
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Oct 5, 2008
10475 posts
driving 4000 KM's and wasting 3 days of vacation to save $660?

Plus having to spend 4 days driving with my wife and son saying "Are we there yet"?

No thanks, my time and sanity is worth way more than that.

We have flown to Florida many times and will continue to do so.

And i like driving and I have done long drives solo before, Montreal to Thunder Bay in a day 8 times.
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Oct 25, 2009
3930 posts
webdoctors wrote:
May 21st, 2018 4:11 pm
I can see this happening more often once self-driving cars take off. Than everyone will be doing 12 hour drives like its nothing, going to bed in the car at 9pm and waking up at 9am at their destination. Everyone in GTA can go to Chicago or NYC for the weekend...
Have you heard of Greyhound or Amtrak? A 12 hour drive isn’t “nothing”, even if you aren’t the one driving.
Toronto is a very small part of Canada
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Jan 22, 2003
4366 posts
MonctonMan wrote:
May 31st, 2018 3:06 pm
Have you heard of Greyhound or Amtrak? A 12 hour drive isn’t “nothing”, even if you aren’t the one driving.
My biggest issue with those services is they're missing the last leg of the journey. The ride from the train station to the hotel. Plus you're not in control of when and where bathroom breaks can occur.

There's a retro VW bug micrbus concept car where the front captain chairs can rotate to face the passengers and the console arm rest turns into a table. Cars will be the RVs of the future. Seriously, ppl can't imagine how awesome the future will look. ... transport/
demandez-lui si elle dormira avec vous pour un LED keychain
Sr. Member
Jul 23, 2009
609 posts
Cork, Ireland
Between the two, which do you prefer better overall: driving down or flying down and renting a car?
Deal Fanatic
Jun 11, 2005
6685 posts
savercanuck91 wrote:
Aug 8th, 2018 9:59 pm
Between the two, which do you prefer better overall: driving down or flying down and renting a car?
I have driven and also flown. I prefer flying you get their a lot quicker.
Deal Expert
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Mar 18, 2005
17920 posts
Niagara Falls
I'm not sure who would prefer driving. It just happens to be cheaper for the most part.
Deal Fanatic
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Oct 23, 2008
6932 posts
Toronto (Markham)
If it wasn't so damn expensive to fly & rent a car I would do it. As it is though, sometimes you gotta drive to save $$$.
Tis banana is IRIE :razz:

10% off is cold, 50% off is warm, 75% off is hot, but FREE IS RFD!
Deal Fanatic
Feb 7, 2017
5913 posts
Eastern Ontario
A lot depends on how much time you have.

From Toronto thru to Montreal no matter what route you take it’s at least a 24 Hour drive to places like Orlando or Daytona.
27 to Fort Lauderdale, Miami etc
Another half day to Key West

Some folks drive straight thru with 2 or more drivers
But most folks break it up into 3 or 4 Days
So right there, a week or more has been blown just on getting down and back

Driving is good if you have the time
Cause often it’s cheaper than flying in and renting a car
Especially so, if you are looking at say 2 or more weeks down south

Plus having a car in the South means you can explore a whole lot of Florida vs just your Destination city
And with the other added benefit, is you can also see a lot of neat places on the drive itself
(Again, if you have the time)

When we drive we make it a point to stop along the way for overnights in the likes of
Gettysburg - Raleigh - Myrtle Beach - Charleston - Savannah - St Augustine - Daytona Beach
Splitting them up with one set for the south bound route, and the other for the north bound route

Flying makes sense when time is limited
But like all things in life... time costs money

This is especially true if you are heading to Florida over Christmas or March Break with kids in tow

A family of 4 flying at prime time, plus a Florida Car Rental... on top of other vacation costs really adds up

Which is why when the kids were young... we did a lot of driving to Florida for vacations vs flying
It certainly was a lot cheaper... and with a little creative thinking one can find ways to save even more money
(Ie packing along a cooler and picking up pop / drinks & fixings for sandwiches at a grocery store... vs fast food / restaurant stops for lunch)
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
4377 posts
I prefer flying and have only done the drive once when I was much younger. Even then, I personally found the drive torcherous.

Typically, you can find an airfare around $300 per person so I think cost comes down to how many people and the deal you can get on a rental car. Three years ago for my wife and me, I found a deal of $296US for a Kia Soul at Thrifty for a full month and it was a no brainer.

As for the cost of the drive, if you only include the cost of gas, it may appear to be cheaper but if you assume 2,600 kms each way at $0.40/km the car cost of >$2,000 equation is not as cheap as people assume.
Deal Addict
Aug 29, 2011
3379 posts
If you’ve got three or more people going, driving will generally be cheaper. Sure it could take 3-4 days from Toronto each way if you want to stop in every little town and browse, but realistically it’s a 2-day drive. I’ve done it three times: once as a kid (I-75 route) and twice with my own kids (I-77/79 route).

This all assumes time isn’t your enemy in which case flying is your only choice.
Deal Addict
Jul 4, 2004
4199 posts
We drive to Florida and back every year since we want our vehicle there but echoing the comments of others, unless you've got a whole lot of time to kill or you are afraid of flying, it's hard to prefer driving.
Deal Fanatic
Nov 24, 2013
5129 posts
Kingston, ON
I've never driven from Ontario straight to Florida. I've made the entirety of the drive before, just not in one connected stretch to truly know how much it'd wear on me. 20hrs driving time doesn't seem too bad to me having done Ontario -> Cape Breton -> Ontario (18hrs each way) which can easily be broken into a short day and a long day or two medium days of driving. I also know it's cheaper than parking the car, flying out, and renting a car.

That being said, I'm a working adult, not a retiree. It's far more sensible for me to take 1 week's vacation (+/-) and fly down than it is to take 2 weeks (+/-) to tack on travel time. Our sweet spot right now is flying with a 10 night stay, taking 8 vacation days from work. Driving would give us the choice of keeping the 10 nights and tacking 1-2 vacation days from work on (depends on whether we want to preserve the rest day after getting back that we have right now when flying) or only staying 8-9 nights.


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