Best Route to 6 Ivy Leagues

Old Jan 29th, 2017, 07:56 PM
  #1  
pbb
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 2
Best Route to 6 Ivy Leagues

Hi There...need to know best route & ways to visit Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Columbia, Brown. & U Penn during our Spring Break. Which airport to fly in & out, could rent a car but would prefer not to in NYC. Will spend at least 1 full night in NYC to see a show. Would love suggestions on places to stay, NOT on super tight budget, but budget minded. Just my incoming Senior and I. Thanks in advance.
pbb is offline  
Old Jan 29th, 2017, 08:07 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 4,393
You don't want a car in Boston or Philly either. Both Harvard and UPenn are reachable by transit. And both cities would suck to drive in, possibly even more than NYC. No idea about the others though.

Don't know if you have any interest in Hostels, but Hostelling international NYC would be fun for your senior and it's walking distance from Columbia. Very accessible by transit and I've been impressed by the hostel itself. I think that's private rooms but not positive.
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Jan 29th, 2017, 08:11 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 6,482
The real pain in the neck to reach is Dartmouth, which I see you did not include.

The easiest way is to start or end in Philly and start or end in Boston.

Amtrak will solve all your problems and it will be the most convenient.
IMDonehere is offline  
Old Jan 29th, 2017, 09:47 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 6,482
Sorry, Amtrak will stop in Boston, Providence, New Heaven, and NYC. From Penn Station, NY (which is what Amtrak also uses as a terminal) you take NJ Transit to Princeton. You go to Princeton Junction and then take the Dinky (yes that is what the locals call it) one stop to the town of Princeton. Then you return to Princeton Junction and head into Philly.

Or you can easily do the trip in reverse.

Of course Harvard is in Cambridge across the Charles River from Boston but very easy to reach.
IMDonehere is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 05:54 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,206
I would fly into Boston and out of Philadelphia or NYC. After landing in Boston, see Harvard. Rent a car for one day and drive up to Dartmouth (about 2 to 3 hours depending on traffic and weather). Take Amtrak from Boston to Providence for Brown. Continue on Amtrak to New Haven for Yale, then to NYC. Princeton is on the way to Philadelphia, and you could easily do Princeton and UPenn as day-trips from NYC on succeeding days, or you could simply stop over in Princeton on the way to Philadelphia (it's about half-way). I'd recommend NJ Transit and SEPTA for the trip from NYC to Philadelphia because it's noticeably cheaper than Amtrak.

As you can see, this trip takes about a week if you see one college per day, including travel time. You need to rent a car for only one of those days because Dartmouth is in the middle of nowhere. But it doesn't really help you to have a car for the rest of the trip in my opinion.

The most difficult thing is that Boston and NYC are among the most expensive hotel cities in America, and you need to stay in convenient, centrally located hotels in order to do all this by public transit. (Though I'd probably stay in Cambridge after landing in Boston. It will be easier to get in and out by car that way.)
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 06:01 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,168
"New Heaven?" Are you a Yalie, Imdonehere?

Fortunately, the OP doesn't need to go to Dartmouth, but if s/he did, the bus from Logan Airport is a useful way to go because it imposes the reality of isolation on the would be Youthful Scholar who is the object of all this. Dartmouth is close to skiing, mountain climbing, hiking kayaking but hard to get home from.
Ackislander is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 06:03 AM
  #7  
J62
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 10,476
study, study, study...
J62 is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 06:54 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 6,482
"New Heaven?" Are you a Yalie, Imdonehere?
____________________________

No, nor am I an editor.
IMDonehere is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 07:45 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 19,737
Study, study, study.
vincenzo32951 is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 08:37 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 10,602
Your best bet might be to use Amtrak and Uber.
http://www.campusvisit.com/amtrak/
tomfuller is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 09:22 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 25,807
The OP didn't say he/she didn't want to drive, just that he/she preferred not to rent a car in NYC. Personally, I'd fly into Boston, rent a car and drive Boston-Providence-New Haven-Princeton-Philadelphia-drop off car and take the train to New York (I'd actually do Philadelphia before Princeton if it's possible to drop the car off in Princeton). That leaves out Dartmouth and Cornell, but those aren't on the list anyway. Fly home from NY.
sf7307 is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2017, 07:55 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 6,482
I still think the easiest way a straight line from Boston to Philly or vice versa is the easiest.

The only mitigating circumstance would the airfares.
IMDonehere is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 07:43 AM
  #13  
pbb
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 2
Thank you so much! Great advice and ready to book the trip! Happy do not have to rent a car anywhere!

One more question...which city should I plan on staying the night other than NYC?
Seems like I should be staying one night in Boston, correct?
pbb is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 08:24 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 4,393
I would definitely stay a night in Boston, or maybe in Cambridge near Harvard so your senior could explore the area. Whatever your family picks, the student will be living there for at least a few years. Good to get a feel for the transit and entertainment options!
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 10:22 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,168
Well, the problem with the mouse's suggestion is that to be fair, you would have to spend a night in each of these places. Maybe.

All these colleges are in serious urban areas with the exception of Princeton. When you are 16 or 17, one urban area is pretty much the same as the other, and you lack the experience to discern the difference. An overnight visit isn't going to change that.
Ackislander is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 10:40 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 11,786
Wow. That's an ambitious trip, on many levels.
Sometimes it's best to visit a school AFTER the student is admitted.
You know the admission rates at those schools, right?
Tabernash2 is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 11:00 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 11,786
(Sorry to sound like a downer. But, if your student falls in love with a campus, and then doesn't get in, it's a bigger downer.)
Tabernash2 is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 11:52 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 4,393
I've known several people to get into a few of those schools but then not get to go because of the financial aid package, so tabernash2 does have a point...but I don't know, ackislander, I definitely had preferences/reactions at that age over school settings/cities. All urban settings but not all the same.
marvelousmouse is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 12:01 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 11,786
Our DD applied to 12 colleges. We decided to wait and visit, after we knew she'd been accepted. Made our lives much easier.

What's the point in getting excited about an Ivy League-level school, without knowing if you're able to go there; much less be able to afford it?
Tabernash2 is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2017, 12:49 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 6,482
Cambridge is a lot different than Morningside Heights (Columbia) and is lot different than the UPenn area.

Morningside Heights has changed dramatically over the last 20 years. We just went up there to show a niece the campus and forgot how nice the are is around Low Library.

The Ivies are well endowed and CAN offer good aid packages.

Princeton has one of the most beautiful campuses in the country. And the town of Princeton can be expensive and pretentious but there are great bookstores, a terrific ice cream shop, and Despana which offers the best chorizos I have had in in America which are actually made in Queens, NY.
IMDonehere is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO