Epic with slightly less driving

Our epic trip plans didn’t survive the day.

As I started checking out hotel prices in Monterey this afternoon, I noticed a strange thing: they were unbelievably expensive. The Red Roof Inn, for example, wanted $457 per night for a two-queen room! Even places like the Motel 6– where you’re lucky if the sheets are even fitted to the mattress– was asking $160 per night.

Sure, Monterey is a nice area, but I couldn’t believe the prices. Our stay at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas was going to be cheaper than the Super 8 in Monterey. But then I figured out that the week we’re planning to be out there is some huge collectible car show called the Concours d’Elegance. Apparently car enthusiasts from the world over converge on Monterey in early August and drool over each others’ wheels. If I was a car enthusiast I might have known that, I suppose.

Anyway, it turns out that hotels in that area literally triple their normal room rates for that week only. Sure enough, as I started adjusting dates on the various reservation tools, I saw the prices fall back to more “normal” rates. Hmm.

After talking to our friends, it became clear that we couldn’t shift the dates of our trip (long story) so instead we had to pick a different destination. We weren’t really all that picky in the first place; Monterey sounded cool and one of our goals for the trip was a beach. So after a bit of thought, we changed our itinerary to take us down to San Diego instead.


This new route shaved off a day of driving and almost 500 miles. And it still includes a beach.