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Houston Peeps! A few questions...


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We fly into IAH late Sunday night, and are renting a car at the airport. We are doing all the Houston area stuff after Christmas, so the plan is to go to Corpus Christi Monday morning. 

Google suggests the quickest route is through downtown Houston, taking 69 all the way. When googling other driving directions, for example from the NASA area back to IAH, they all go through downtown. Is this true? Is going through downtown really faster than going around it?

Thank you!

Edited by arctic_bunny
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24 minutes ago, arctic_bunny said:

We fly into IAH late Sunday night, and are renting a car at the airport. We are doing all the Houston area stuff after Christmas, so the plan is to go to Corpus Christi Monday morning. 

Google suggests the quickest route is through downtown Houston, taking 69 all the way. When googling other driving directions, for example from the NASA area back to IAH, they all go through downtown. Is this true? Is going through downtown really faster than going around it?

Thank you!

That has always been my experience when I go to see my sister.  I hate it too...

We will barely miss you....we will be leaving that airport Sunday afternoon (picking up luggage for dh's co-workers)

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Just now, Scarlett said:

That has always been my experience when I go to see my sister.  I hate it too...

We will barely miss you....we will be leaving that airport Sunday afternoon (picking up luggage for dh's co-workers)

Imagine a WTM meetup at the airport, lol!

So really, everyone drives through, not around?!!

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I would check google maps at the time you land and go from there. Taking 69 (59) all the way, you don't actually go *thru* downtown (there's a funky exit that will lead you through downtown; watch the signs so you stay on the regular I-69, it's very clearly marked), and can definitely be faster. 

Normally, personally, I take Beltway 8 around, but that is a toll road and will cost around I think $8 in tolls (and you'll have to go through the cash lanes since you won't have the EZ Tag from TX, and that will slow you down a bit) BUT we've often taken 69 all the way, as well, to avoid the tolls; it's about the same time, more or less. (oh, if a rental, you can opt for the toll tag option; it may be a good choice)

But for sure put on Google Maps (or Waze or whatever) when you leave the airport, because traffic during the week can vary wildly  -- for ex, DH takes middle DS to/from his college campus every week at the same two times; he uses Google Maps every single time because it will give the most updated info regarding which route has the best traffic. 

For going from Corpus over to NASA you'll come up 69 and then can cut over using the Beltway 8, or go until 45 and take 45 South, but again....Google is your friend. Well, or you could do 69 to 610 over (we do that route a lot). 

But, bottom line is: Trust the Google. Period. 

 

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1 minute ago, arctic_bunny said:

Imagine a WTM meetup at the airport, lol!

So really, everyone drives through, not around?!!

See above 🙂 It's only kind of through. It's more like "beside" downtown (you will go past it, but "downtown" is over to the side)

I live along your route to Corpus; holler if you need anything 🙂 We're about an hour-ish from the airport. 

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8 minutes ago, arctic_bunny said:

Imagine a WTM meetup at the airport, lol!

So really, everyone drives through, not around?!!

 

I think the problem is -- traffic all around Houston is so bad it is no faster to go around than just to go through. 

I hate going to Houston because the traffic is -bad- (And that's true even when I dont go into downtown Houston and stay on the fringes)

 

Edited by vonfirmath
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4 minutes ago, TheReader said:

See above 🙂 It's only kind of through. It's more like "beside" downtown (you will go past it, but "downtown" is over to the side)

I live along your route to Corpus; holler if you need anything 🙂 We're about an hour-ish from the airport. 

I guess this is true, but it sure feels like 'downtown'.  When my sister lived in Pearland,  google would take me down through Dallas and then what felt like straight through Houston.  Now she lives in Rosharon....haven't been there  yet.  

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1 minute ago, TheReader said:

See above 🙂 It's only kind of through. It's more like "beside" downtown (you will go past it, but "downtown" is over to the side)

I live along your route to Corpus; holler if you need anything 🙂 We're about an hour-ish from the airport. 

Well... since you offered, lol... If we land at 2300, then rent a car, are we better off pushing on for an hour to a stay in, say, Sugar Land area for the night? I feel like avoiding Monday morning traffic would be a good thing, and worth the extra late night travel.

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1 minute ago, arctic_bunny said:

Well... since you offered, lol... If we land at 2300, then rent a car, are we better off pushing on for an hour to a stay in, say, Sugar Land area for the night? I feel like avoiding Monday morning traffic would be a good thing, and worth the extra late night travel.

If you think you can make the drive, YES. If you can get past 610 (it's a loop so you'll cross it twice from the airport), the traffic Monday will be so.much.better.  Sugar Land is more or less the first area you'll reach after passing 610 the 2nd time, so that's a good spot, or if you can go a tiny bit further, hotel prices will keep dropping, most likely. 

Even if you can just get past downtown, you'll benefit, because then on Monday you'll be going more or less opposite the flow of traffic. (or if you plan a later start Monday morning, after say, 9 am or so)

 

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5 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

I guess this is true, but it sure feels like 'downtown'.  When my sister lived in Pearland,  google would take me down through Dallas and then what felt like straight through Houston.  Now she lives in Rosharon....haven't been there  yet.  

It definitely does feel like it, especially I guess to someone not from here; you go through "Houston" for sure (and right next to things like the George R. Brown, the stadiums, Lakewood church, which used to be a stadium, etc....) but not off onto the surface streets of *actual* downtown. 

For sure you can take the Beltway around and miss all of that, and it's usually maybe a little faster if you have the toll tag (slower if you do the cash lanes), but really....all depends which highway has the most wrecks at that time. If Google says go through.....:shrug:....usually it's right. 

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1 minute ago, TheReader said:

If you think you can make the drive, YES. If you can get past 610 (it's a loop so you'll cross it twice from the airport), the traffic Monday will be so.much.better.  Sugar Land is more or less the first area you'll reach after passing 610 the 2nd time, so that's a good spot, or if you can go a tiny bit further, hotel prices will keep dropping, most likely. 

Even if you can just get past downtown, you'll benefit, because then on Monday you'll be going more or less opposite the flow of traffic. (or if you plan a later start Monday morning, after say, 9 am or so)

 

We don’t have to be at the airport to leave until about 1300. So no super early morning. I think that even 0130 bedtime would be reasonable. Get up, breakfast.... then either the Lexington or the aquarium Monday, the remaining one Tuesday, then drive to San Antonio for Christmas Day... then Houston on Boxing Day for an air and space extravaganza, and maybe some NFL.

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8 minutes ago, TheReader said:

It definitely does feel like it, especially I guess to someone not from here; you go through "Houston" for sure (and right next to things like the George R. Brown, the stadiums, Lakewood church, which used to be a stadium, etc....) but not off onto the surface streets of *actual* downtown. 

For sure you can take the Beltway around and miss all of that, and it's usually maybe a little faster if you have the toll tag (slower if you do the cash lanes), but really....all depends which highway has the most wrecks at that time. If Google says go through.....:shrug:....usually it's right. 

Oh I see what you are saying....right, I knew we didn't actually get off onto surface streets...

Thankfully when we leave town it will be Sunday afternoon, so maybe traffic won't be too bad.....although it is Christmas time, so who knows.  I think we are going to be going through Houston to Rosharon around 4-5 on Friday afternoon....the worst possible time right?

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Considering how late you’re arriving on a Sunday night, you should be fine. Odds are very good that traffic will be a non-issue. And yes, I-69 would be the fastest route from the airport to Corpus Christi (you'll be driving right by my town!). Are you planning to drive all of the way that night?

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7 minutes ago, Chelli said:

Considering how late you’re arriving on a Sunday night, you should be fine. Odds are very good that traffic will be a non-issue. And yes, I-69 would be the fastest route from the airport to Corpus Christi (you'll be driving right by my town!). Are you planning to drive all of the way that night?

No, I was thinking we would stop around Sugar Land? Avoid Monday AM traffic?

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1 minute ago, vonfirmath said:

If you're planning to need a hotel, you might want to make a reservation ahead of time. I reserved hotels last weekend for this coming weekend and availability was already getting low!

This vacation is far less organized than I expected! It has really snuck up on me.

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42 minutes ago, arctic_bunny said:

No, I was thinking we would stop around Sugar Land? Avoid Monday AM traffic?

Yes, that would be perfect. You might even drive about fifteen minutes farther and stay in the Rosenberg/Richmond area. Traffic for sure would be a non-issue heading southwest from there.

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Just now, arctic_bunny said:

Yes, looking at the La Quinta?

That would be a good spot, I think. That gets you past all of the construction on 69, too, and then you're right near food and stuff for the morning. The gas station across the highway (on 36) is a brand new giant Exxon, with food, etc. in addition to your right next to a McD's, Whataburger, etc. Also a donut shop just opened right there as well (although our neighborhood has mixed reviews thus far whether it's good or not). 

(ha, maybe the La Quinta has breakfast, actually....just thought of that). 

 

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4 minutes ago, TheReader said:

That would be a good spot, I think. That gets you past all of the construction on 69, too, and then you're right near food and stuff for the morning. The gas station across the highway (on 36) is a brand new giant Exxon, with food, etc. in addition to your right next to a McD's, Whataburger, etc. Also a donut shop just opened right there as well (although our neighborhood has mixed reviews thus far whether it's good or not). 

(ha, maybe the La Quinta has breakfast, actually....just thought of that). 

 

It does have breakfast, but we will probably need drinks, etc for the road! DH will be devastated there is no Krispy Kreme, though.

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1 minute ago, arctic_bunny said:

It does have breakfast, but we will probably need drinks, etc for the road! DH will be devastated there is no Krispy Kreme, though.

oooh, yea, I think there is one in Sugar Land somewhere, but that's a pretty big back-track. *Ah, yes, it's on HWY 6 near the Half Price Books; still a bit of a backtrack if you come stay all the way in Rosenberg, sorry; maybe Victoria has one? For a mid-morning snack a little ways down the road...? 

I have not personally tried the new donut shop yet to say whether it's good or bad; my neighborhood FB group has one post raving about how wonderful it is, and another calling it "amateur" and awful. (there's a very good donut shop about 10 mins from me, that everyone LOVES, so I cant' tell if this new one is actually *bad* or just NOT the beloved other shop, ya know?)

If I try it between now and then, I'll let you know. 

 

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12 minutes ago, arctic_bunny said:

It does have breakfast, but we will probably need drinks, etc for the road! DH will be devastated there is no Krispy Kreme, though.

Drive about twenty more minutes to the southwest to stop for your drinks at the Buc-ees in my town. It's a must south Texas experience. Plus they have great breakfast tacos. If you drive about fifteen more minutes, you can stop at a great kolache (Czech pastry) place. Another must when you're in this part of the country. I can give you the name of the kolache place if you are interested.

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18 minutes ago, Chelli said:

Drive about twenty more minutes to the southwest to stop for your drinks at the Buc-ees in my town. It's a must south Texas experience. Plus they have great breakfast tacos. If you drive about fifteen more minutes, you can stop at a great kolache (Czech pastry) place. Another must when you're in this part of the country. I can give you the name of the kolache place if you are interested.

Yes. You must stop at Buc-ees if you have an opportunity. Particularly if it is the big Buc-ees and not just another gas station. They are known for their great restrooms. and they have a great shop for tourism type items. And I love their Beaver Nuggets and cheap drinks

 

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46 minutes ago, Chelli said:

Drive about twenty more minutes to the southwest to stop for your drinks at the Buc-ees in my town. It's a must south Texas experience. Plus they have great breakfast tacos. If you drive about fifteen more minutes, you can stop at a great kolache (Czech pastry) place. Another must when you're in this part of the country. I can give you the name of the kolache place if you are interested.

I must know about all things pastry. **whispering** I was not a huge fan of the Krispy Kreme... 

Also, I have told DH about breakfast tacos. He can’t wait.

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2 hours ago, Chelli said:

Drive about twenty more minutes to the southwest to stop for your drinks at the Buc-ees in my town. It's a must south Texas experience. Plus they have great breakfast tacos. If you drive about fifteen more minutes, you can stop at a great kolache (Czech pastry) place. Another must when you're in this part of the country. I can give you the name of the kolache place if you are interested.

Yes, you must have kolaches if you are having breakfast in the Houston area!

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3 hours ago, arctic_bunny said:

I must know about all things pastry. **whispering** I was not a huge fan of the Krispy Kreme... 

Also, I have told DH about breakfast tacos. He can’t wait.

Here's the link to the kolache place:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g55791-d2225244-r124671398-Prasek_s_Hillje_Smokehouse-El_Campo_Texas.html

I prefer the cream cheese, strawberry, or dewberry, but they are all good.

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52 minutes ago, Chelli said:

Here's the link to the kolache place:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g55791-d2225244-r124671398-Prasek_s_Hillje_Smokehouse-El_Campo_Texas.html

I prefer the cream cheese, strawberry, or dewberry, but they are all good.


I love this place. I haven’t been in years, but I stop anytime I go that way.

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1 hour ago, Chelli said:

Here's the link to the kolache place:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g55791-d2225244-r124671398-Prasek_s_Hillje_Smokehouse-El_Campo_Texas.html

I prefer the cream cheese, strawberry, or dewberry, but they are all good.

We go to Hillje Smokehouse whenever we go to Corpus or South Padre. They have a lot more than kolaches. They sell good BBQ and lots of stuff to go. It's very much worth the visit.

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@Chelli, @TheReader@City Mouse, @chiguirre:

We woke up and drove straight to Prasek’s. DS12 had the breakfast burrito, DS14 had the breakfast omelette, I had the brisket sandwich, and DH had the steak and eggs. It was all delicious, but DH still hasn’t stopped taking about his steak! We took the kolaches to go, lol.

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21 hours ago, arctic_bunny said:

@Chelli, @TheReader@City Mouse, @chiguirre:

We woke up and drove straight to Prasek’s. DS12 had the breakfast burrito, DS14 had the breakfast omelette, I had the brisket sandwich, and DH had the steak and eggs. It was all delicious, but DH still hasn’t stopped taking about his steak! We took the kolaches to go, lol.

Oh, yay!! So glad. We absolutely adore Prasek's. 

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