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Economical San Fran. parking/lodging strategies for 2 college girls w/CAR?

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Two early 20's women, by themselves... so safety is a priority...

What would YOU advise them to do for San Francisco lodging for a couple of nights this week. (might turn into Saturday night and Sunday night)

Guessing they'd want to be as central as possible, and that the roll-the-dice-on-Priceline-and-get-hit-with-$40-nightly-parking-charge strategy is NOT agreeable to them.

They are on a DRIVING vacation, and a long way from home, so they must accommodate a vehicle.

Even an idea which might have them at a reliable motel that is a train ride from central San Fran, and a stop from which they could strategically see plenty during their small window of time there, would help.

Thanks to anyone who can provide deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetailed suggestions to pass along.

I've suggested that they drive in via San Jose, so they'll likely be on the peninsula vs. across the bay.

Thanks in advance for any ideas!

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