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Old 01-10-2013, 03:21 PM
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Location: San Diego, CA
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 4,476
Mein Auto: 2016 M4 Coupe | 2006 Z4MR
Originally Posted by jtuds View Post
That's where I need advice from the insiders. I have no idea how many high traffic areas I'm passing through. So if google maps says 5 hours (which would allow me to leave at noon and arrive at my destination while the sun is still up) but in reality it takes 7 or 8 hours because of traffic (which would make for an extremely long haul and may mean driving in the dark in a city I've never been to) then I would really like to know before I start booking hotels. Only people who have been in and around these places have this information, which makes it hard for me to tell whether I'm being over ambitious or just ambitious.
We found that in many cases, particularly where we had a lot of driving in a day, that the Google Maps estimates were pretty optimistic. European roads start getting repaired as soon as the weather is nice which means "squeeze lanes" and extremely slow, backed-up traffic. The day we drove from Fussen to Lauterbrunnen we had horrible traffic in Switzerland, particularly around Zurich. Nav took us on the B12/A1 route rather than the A3 route we had planned on and with the traffic around Zurich this extended our travel time so much that we missed the last train from Lauterbrunnen to Murren. Fortunately, the hotel told us that there was a cable car in Stechelberg that runs much later and was only a few kilometers up the road. (Hint: get Michelin maps and mark out your intended route and check it against the Nav! We took Michelin maps, really didn't use them but should have.)

On our way from Lauterbrunnen to Stuttgart, we stopped in Lucerne and then drove through France so we could visit Strasbourg and again ran into horrible traffic with with at least half an hour at a complete standstill. Apparently when this happens in France, everyone gets out of their car and walks around. After leaving Strasbourg the same day we ran into an Autobahn closure south of Baden-Baden in the early evening and even with Nav had to figure out how to get around it and didn't get to our hotel outside Stuttgart until 11:30 PM. Bottom line, plan for delays and allow more time to get around. If you don't run into any delays, you've just got more time at your destination.

As for Switzerland, I would highly recommend staying in Interlaken or Lauterbrunnen instead of Zurich, but it's out of the way if you're going to Milan.
- Tom
His: 2016 M4 Coupe | Sakhir Orange Metallic | Black Full Merino Leather | CF Trim | M DCT | Adaptive M Suspension | 19" Black Alloy Wheels | ZEC | ZLP | ZDB | MPE | ED 5/13/16
Hers: 2011 335is Couipe | Le Mans Blue Metallic | Black Dakota Leather | Dark Glacier Aluminum | 6MT | ED 5/12/11
Also His: 2006 Z4 Roadster (E85) | Interlagos Blue Metallic | Black Extended Nappa Leather | Carbon Leather Trim | Purchased 7/19/12

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