Shenandoah National Park is one of nearly 400 parks waiving entrances fees during National Park Week April 21-29
Early Access to Cost2Drive 2.0 for National Park Week
Here at Cost2Go we’ve been working on something for quite some time, something we think is wonderful, and we’re so eager to share it we’re not even going to wait until it’s finished (because nothing on the Web ever is). We’re getting ready to launch an entirely new version of Cost2Drive.com, our popular trip planning application that has now been used by over 1 million people.
But before we do, we’re going to give park lovers a special sneak peak of the new site in honor of National Park Week. We love our national parks, and during National Park Week (April 21-29) something even more wonderful is going to happen as entrance fees to all 397 national parks will be waivedmaking it free to get in. Unfortunately it’s not freeto get tothe parks, and so that’s where we come in by helping people plan their trips with our brand new national park pages.
Yellowstone National Park Page on Cost2Drive 2.0
These beautiful new pages cover the top 10 national parks that users searched for on Cost2Drive over the past 12 months, and they make it super easy to determine how much it will cost to drive to the parks based on the fuel efficiency of your car and current gas prices along your route. They also help you save money by locating the cheapest gas at refueling points along the way (click on the gas pump icon to see the price and location) and by displaying the cheapest airfare so you can see if it’s cheaper to drive or fly to the park.
Results Page for trip to Zion National Park from Sacramento, CA
The new national park pages also display the top hotels, restaurants and attractions in (or near) the parks from TripAdvisor so you can start planning your entire trip directly from these pages, and if your favorite park isn’t among these ten, no problem. You can get all this helpful information for all 379 national parks by simply typing in the park name on the main page of Cost2Drive (note – Mount Rushmore isn’t a National Park, it’s actually a National Memorial) .
Below are links to the 10 brand new national park pages on Cost2Drive so you can plan your trip to the park in earnest and even share your plans with friends via Facebook or Twitter using our new ShareThis widget!
That’s all we’re going to say about Cost2Drive 2.0 for now, but we’ll be sharing much more in the coming weeks as something even more wonderful is coming – Summer – and here at C2G we want to help you make the best of it!
Rapidly increasing gas prices have gas stations scrambling to keep up. This one in Great Falls, VA ran out of the # 4 when gas surpassed $4 per gallon.
Shoppers Are Turning to Cost2Drive in Increasing Numbers
This morning my wife wanted to purchase tickets to an upcoming show at the Kennedy Center. She decided to order the tickets online to save time and the fuel costs associated with driving into Washington, DC to buy the tickets in person, but was stunned by the huge service fee of $32 for ordering them online. All of a sudden the trade off in convenience didn’t seem worth the extra expense, but there was still the fuel cost to consider.
Fortunately she had downloaded the Cost2Drive iPhone app and within seconds was able to determine that the trip into DC would cost her a mere $3.85, less than $8 round trip, and so she opted to drive to the Kennedy Center to pick up the tickets thereby saving $24 off the cost of the total ticket purchase.
With a swipe of her finger, my wife could also have quickly compared the costs of driving each of our cars into DC.
As she related this story I thought about the millions of scenarios that occur each day throughout the US that involve similar types of cost-benefit analyses tied to driving costs and gas prices.
Some examples include:
Is it cheaper to drive to the outlets or shop nearby?
How good is that daily deal I’m considering once I factor in driving costs?
What’s it going to cost me to run back to the grocery store for that one item I forgot?
I decided to investigate if others were using Cost2Drive in this manner by searching through over 200,000 trips entered on our popular trip cost calculator in March to see if any had shopping malls entered as the trip destination. Several hundred did with the Mall of America in Bloomington, MN as the most popular followed by The Florida Mall in Orlando and the King of Prussia Mall in Pennsylvania.
The average trip distance for these routes was slightly over 300 miles, which is much shorter than the 800-mile average distance for all routes entered on Cost2Drive.com. When the Mall of America, which is a travel destination in itself, is removed from the results the average distance drops to 230 miles with many routes being entered in the 10-20 mile range indicating that shoppers are indeed concerned about driving costs, even for nearby shopping trips.
Are high gas prices impacting your daily shopping habits? Share your experiences below.
If you’ve been in hibernation this winter, or traveling in some remote location with no internet access, then perhaps you haven’t heard of Pinterest. For the rest of us its been impossible to ignore as its the hottest thing since Paris Hilton ignited a media frenzy oh so many years ago.
Daily referral visits to Cost2Drive.com from Pinterest
So what has people so excited about Pinterest that some in the media claim it represents a valid threat to Facebook? Is it the beautifully simple design combined with the stunning images that people are pinning? Or is it the viral hooks that make it easy to share through social media. Or perhaps it satisfies an innate need in all of us to organize our desires (as in bucket lists) and pinning images is so much more fun than typing text?
Browsing Pinterest Images for Road Trips
I’m not exactly sure why Pinterest has taken off the way it has, but some other similar bookmarking services such as de.li.cious and StumbleUpon have seen rapid growth in the past. Regardless of the reason, every social media pundit on the planet is sounding the alarm that if you run a consumer business you’d better get plugged into Pinterest ASAP lest you get left behind as stories are already circulating about Pinterest driving enormous volumes of traffic to sites.
As for us, we were struggling to find a reason why someone would pin Cost2Drive on Pinterest and so were very pleasantly surprised to find people are already doing just that as yesterday we notice 23 people had pinned the site under the category of Smart Ideas.
Pinterest pins on Cost2Drive.com
Maybe those pundits are right. Rest assured we’ll be taking a closer look into Pinterest. If you’re still struggling with what Pinterest is all about, Business Insider has an excellent tutorial where you can learn more.