Yesterday I made my way to New York City for the launch of The Traveler’s Handbooks at Housing Works Bookstore Café. If it had been winter, the drive or fly decision would have landed on the side of fly. At this time of year, when the fall colors are in all their glory, the decision landed squarely on the other side.
A Life of Loving the Fall
As a child, I collected the best maple leaves and pressed them between pieces of wax paper to save their beauty.
As a teenager, hikes through colorful forests were a typical fall activity.
By the time I was raising my family and building a business with my late husband, making time in short supply, my luxuriating in fall colors seemed limited to the drive to Canadian Thanksgiving dinner. Traveling along the QEW across the base of Mississauga, Ontario, there is a 10 second span when one crosses the Credit River valley and on that weekend, the colors in that valley are at their peak. I adored those 10-seconds every year.
Yesterday, traveling to New York, the joy of those 10 seconds lasted 8 hours. It was spectacular. I never tired of looking. I just couldn’t stop marvelling at the passing scenery.
The Drive or Fly Decision
Last month, as part of my return from Costa Brava, Spain, I flew through JFK airport. That’s how I know that the flight between Toronto and New York City is exactly 1 hour and 1 minute. Yes, that’s what they reported to us.
Ah, but that’s not how long a flight really takes. I often opt for driving or the train because flights take so much longer than their flying time. Here’s the reality:
- 45 minutes – Time to drive to airport
- 3 hours – Time that is recommended that Canadians arrive for flight to US because of security and because we cross customs and immigration before leaving Toronto.
- 1 hour, 1 minute – Flying time. We’ll forget the 1 minute.
- 1.5 hours – From past experience and what I can find on line, this is the minimum amount of time to bumble around the airport and get to downtown Manhattan.
So, it really takes 6 hours 15 minutes to fly to New York.
The time it took to drive from downtown Toronto to New York, stop for a picnic and other rests, get stuck in the Lincoln Tunnel traffic (wow) get lost because the GPS seems to get confused in Manhattan (is it the buildings?) was almost 12 hours. But, I loved those 12 hours. I thoroughly enjoy the colors and even the nuttiness of driving (actually navigating as a friend came with me for the launch) in NYC.
Drive or fly to New York City from Toronto? In the Fall, my decision will always be to drive.
I want to say a big thanks to Doubletree by Hilton who supported me with accommodation in New York during the launch.