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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We will be flying into Oakland Airport at the end of the month to visit family in central california. We'll be staying in the bay area for a few days before moving on. For the first night we plan to take a hotel right by the airport with a shuttle service since we're coming in late. We're trying to decide whether or not it's worth staying there in Oakland or taking a different hotel for the other couple of nights in Berkeley, where we plan to spend most of our time. It depends on the distance/hassle of it mainly.

How long does it take to get to Berkeley from the OAK airport with a car under normal circumstances? Which hours need to be avoided (if any) in either direction? Is this a bad idea?

Also, any clean, family-friendly hotel recommendations for Berkeley would be much appreciated. Online reviews are too mixed to be helpful.

thanks!
 

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Hi there,
I live in Berkeley and have done this trip many times. The Oakland airport is only about 15-20 minutes from Berkeley (a little longer if you are going up into the Berkeley hills due to city streets taking longer). You should just get to where you're going that night so avoid setting up once at a airport hotel adn again at a destination. I hope this helps. If you need any other advice, email me ([email protected]). Good luck adn happy travels!
 

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I agree with J-Bean.....I grew up in Berkeley. And you won't worry about traffic if you are coming in late. Morning & evening rush hour should be avoided, or just leave with extra time.

And, yes, you don't want to set-up twice in two different hotels, but ALSO, I wouldn't stay near the airport. I don't know about everywhere but in most of the sizeable cities I have lived, the neighborhoods near the airport are pretty unsavory. Skip it, drive the extra 15-20 mins to Berkeley and set-up camp there.

I am trying to think of hotels that would work for you. I am blanking-- if there were a few you read about, you could post the names and maybe it would jog my mama brain
 

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it'll be no problem. as said, it's a short drive so even with traffic you'd only need a half-hour. and the airport area is no good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by cchrissyy View Post
and the airport area is no good.
that's weird. it's a fairly expensive Holiday Inn with nothing but great reviews.
: and it's in a nasty area? i guess i might need to look into other options.

it's just with coming in so late, waiting for baggage, car rental, installation of car seat and a drive to a hotel somewhere else sounds like it has major preschooler meltdown potential, ya know? after 17 hours of flying and major time zone hopping.

glad to know it's a quick drive to Berkeley at any rate. If I could only find a decent hotel...
 

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Hi! I'd like to recommend staying in Alameda-- which is super close to the oakland airport (10 minutes--and you don't even have to get on the freeway if you go from the car rental part of the airport).

Alameda is a nice place with some inexpensive-ish hotels... yes, all hotels in the area are like $100 bucks, even the regular old motels... if it is less than 89 dollars a night I'd be suspicious of the place.

Alameda is a great, super kid friendly place with lots of parks and stuff. And it is 15 minutes to Berkeley...
 

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Hi there,
Sorry I didn't notice your request for lodging this first time I responded. I'm not sure how long you will stay, what you'd like to be located near, price range your interested in...but here's some options in Berkeley in a range:

There are three standard hotels/motels--Ramada Inn, Travelodge, and Holiday Inn (decently priced for hotel/motels) on Univ. Ave. (within 1-.5 miles of UCB campus). Univ. Ave. is the main street leading through Berkeley so it's not the quietest but you have access to Bart, buses, groceries, restaurants...

There is this great website for "short-term lodging" in Berkeley...http://www.berkeleylodging.com/ but it depends on your length or stay and where you want to be located.

There is the Hotel Durant located a block off of Telegraph Ave. (typical 60's street of Berkeley's past for a quick description) and one block from south side of campus. It's above a nice pub/bar/restaurant (henry's) but be warned, is also near lots of dorms and depending on what sport event is taking place, is mayhem in the night.

And one other recommendation for in Berkeley lodging, right down the street from Hotel Durant, but a little quieter since not next door to dorms and bar... Beau Sky Hotel.

More links here...http://www.berkeleycvb.com/accommodations.cfm

Hope this helps. I know what you mean about arriving in late with toddler. I just arrived into Cancun last month with my 13 month old after a 13 hour red eye flight and had to wait for in-laws at the airport of all places for 3 hours for them to arrive to get to our house another two hour drive away....It was worth it! Getting where you're going is exhausting, but worth it the next morning when you're already there.

Just to note, Oakland is a small airport. You shouldn't have to wait long for your luggage (trusting your airline gets it there), and hop in a taxi or shuttle to the rental car co. and you are almost home-free. Tell whoever you book with that you will arrive late so they'll be ready and nice.
like I said, if I can be of any help on this end, feel free to email me. ([email protected]).
 

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You'll LOVE the bay area! What city is your family in?

I have to agree with pp. I wouldn't stay near the airport in Oakland, so
I would never recommend it to anyone else, even for a night.

Also, in my opinion, a shuttle to the hotel is just as much an ordeal as
getting a rent-a- car and going to your destination right off. I have
done it both ways, and will NEVER do the shuttle thing again.
(wouldn't you be installing the car seat in the shuttle,too, anyway?)

I have no personal recommendations for Berkeley hotels, as I have
never stayed in any there... the prev links listed look like great resources.

Enjoy your stay here... everything is turning SO GREEN and pretty right now!
Mustard flowers and daffodils blooming on the hillsides.. ah I love the SPRING!

:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I actually grew up in California, but I've been in Switzerland for 6 years now...and haven't managed to get back home in all that time!

My family is split between Monterey and Modesto, but when I was younger my friends and I spent most of our weekends driving into SF/Berkeley for shopping and soaking up the vibe. I miss it so much!!! I've got a list of things I want to do there so long...I have no idea how I'll squeeze it in!


Thanks so much for the advice so far, ladies. I've been there lots of times but never stayed in a hotel, I've flown into that airport before but never gave a second thought to the neighborhood. Tripadvisor is my usual source for hotel reviews, and Berkeley gets such mixed ones.

Since it's a pretty emotional homecoming for me, I want everything to be perfect!
 

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I wish I knew any hotels. I've never stayed in one here, or had visitors in one, but I do pass the Claremont a lot...
 

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sorry, no hotel/motel experience or knowledge to share, except i would concur that you're better off spending to extra 15min to get where you'll be staying for the whole trip. you'd spend the at least an hour packing/unpacking the extra time. the area near the airport is mostly industrial, with a hotel or 2 set up for conventions and such (i had a con ed class out on hegenberger pre-kids).

i also second the alameda idea, as great for little kids. lots of playgrounds, and crown beach is great: nice sand, no waves, beautiful view of SF. you could take the ferry over to SF one day, too, it picks up off of main st., near the estuary's mouth (you can also board at jack london square in oakland) and goes to sf ferry bldg and pier39. my kids loved the ride, and it's practically empty midday, unlike the blue&gold touristy boats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
thanks for all the suggestions, mamas!

we booked a place in Alameda, which sounds like the perfect base for us...and I would never have thought of it without ya!


here's to a fab trip! thanks again.
 
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