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Do you (still) use Interstate Rest Stops?

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eliza4one eliza4one is offline
 
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Do you (still) use Interstate Rest Stops?
Old 04-02-2017, 08:21 AM
  #1

I just read an article that states are considering closing them due to lack of funding.

Growing up, we always stopped at them! My mom would pack food in a cooler for lunches, which we ate at rest stops along our journey. Great memories!

Now, when we travel, we are more likely to stop at a fast food place/convenience store to get food/use the restroom.

Some states need them, imo, (Wyoming/Montana) because of the distance between cities/towns. I drive through Wyoming at least once a year to visit family in Montana. We always have to stop at a rest stop at least twice on the way to our destination. However, we don't picnic at them. People traveling with dogs probably use them frequently, I would assume.

Another part of history going by the wayside?


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Old 04-02-2017, 08:24 AM
  #2

Yes! I still use them on road trips.
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:41 AM
  #3

We try to time our stops for bathrooms with stopping for lunch and/or gas and we know which spots are cleanest on our usual routes. However, we do stop at rest areas occasionally and I would hate to see them closed. We don't typically picnic at them because we are traveling in the summer and it is too hot but if the weather is nice we have stopped for a picnic or snack and to take a break from traveling when our DD was a toddler.
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:43 AM
  #4

I use them every time I'm on a long road trip. I usually need get out and stretch/use the restroom break in between meal breaks.
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:58 AM
  #5

I regularly drive to and from my parents' house with my dogs. I love stopping at rest stops because I can walk the dogs, take a bathroom break and (sometimes) get something to eat and/or drink quickly and it's easier than getting in and off the interstate and stopping at gas stations. I would be sad if they closed.


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Rest Stops
Old 04-02-2017, 09:01 AM
  #6

I've been to every rest stop on the east coast, many many times, from Florida all the way to Maine, north to south and south to north, from the time I was a little girl. Eliza, just like you, my parents would pack lunches in coolers, and we would stop at rest areas all along the way. Even now, as an adult, I use rest stops frequently. What memories! It would be sad to see them go.
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Old 04-02-2017, 09:06 AM
  #7

Only if I am with people and only if there's nothing else around. I will not do it while I am alone - I've heard of too many crimes that happen because they can be so isolated. Whenever possible, I combine bathroom stops with lunch stops. If not, I try to find a McDonald's somewhere and I almost always can. I do often buy a drink when I go in, just because I feel bad just using their bathroom.

I can see why places with no towns for miles and miles would need them, and I also see how people with dogs need them.
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rest stops
Old 04-02-2017, 09:20 AM
  #8

The only time I use interstate rest stops when I am with another person. I stop at gas stations to stretch and walk the dog if she is with me. A few year ago a woman was murdered in a rest stop bathroom by a man who stole her car. He ended up being caught about 15 miles from my house. I haven't gone to a rest stop alone since then.
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Old 04-02-2017, 09:22 AM
  #9

Yes, all the time. I look for them and prefer them to fast food/gas station places. Some states seem to do a much better job than others. I think some states have used corporate sponsorship or something to keep them going, but don't quote me on that.

ETA- I have never been scared to use a rest stop and often do road trips by myself with my two young kids ( 5 & 7). I am very aware of my surroundings and not naive, but have never been scared to stop at one. Not saying that others shouldn't​ feel differently, just that that had not been my experience.

Last edited by love_to_learn; 04-02-2017 at 01:23 PM..
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Yes!!
Old 04-02-2017, 09:57 AM
  #10

I haven't heard that!! I prefer the bathrooms there to most gas stations or fast food places!! We usually do gas, then rest area, etc. every few hours. When the children were young many along I-57 had play areas for them!


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Old 04-02-2017, 09:57 AM
  #11

Mentioned, I usually time restroom breaks with food and gas breaks. However, when we lived in middle-of-nowhere Missouri, we would use rest stops frequently because there would be hours of interstate with nothing but corn and the occasional rest stop.
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Old 04-02-2017, 10:40 AM
  #12

Yes! I love interstate rest stops! I hope that any closed are ones near lots of other things. I'd hate to start peeing on the side of the road again
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Old 04-02-2017, 10:46 AM
  #13

We use then all the time when traveling. Usually there are lots of people stopped at the same time, so I don't worry much about safety. Of course, I still try to be aware of who/what is around me. We usually don't picnic there...just use the restrooms and stretch our legs. When we stop for gas, I use the restroom, but, man, I've been in some pretty gross ones out of desperation! Much rather use a rest stop or restaurant.
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Always
Old 04-02-2017, 10:47 AM
  #14

on the New Jersey or Pennsylvania turnpikes. It's just easier. There are always plenty of people there during the times that I would be using them.
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Old 04-02-2017, 12:13 PM
  #15

I just used one today in Indiana on the way to the airport. It's not a long enough trip to need to stop for gas or food, but it was long enough to need a bathroom break!
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Old 04-02-2017, 12:48 PM
  #16

In VA ours are corporate sponsored. Many are just bathrooms, racks of tourism pamphlets, and vending machines. Some are that plus staff giving maps, brochures, and travel info.
I don't stop if I'm alone, but I do if I'm with others. When I travel alone, I stop at a Ways, Sheets, or fast food.
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:03 PM
  #17

We always use rest areas when traveling. I rarely travel alone but I have used them alone during the daytime. They are always very busy with lots of people along the east coast. The time between meals is too long for me to wait!
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:33 PM
  #18

We also used them frequently when I was younger as we drove from Illinois to Florida. My mom also packed a cooler with drinks/food for us. Now that we live out west, we haven't used them as frequently. When the boys were younger and we drove to California, we'd stop once in a while.

When I was little, Illinois had those restaurants on top of the overpass. Anyone remember those???
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:44 PM
  #19

There's a rest stop about 1/2 way between our house and our getaway home, and we stop at least once per month for a restroom break and to let our dogs go potty too. I'd be so sad if they closed!
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:45 PM
  #20

EllaKate - I'm in IL and they're still a thing! :-)
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Old 04-02-2017, 02:20 PM
  #21

Now that I have arthritis, we stop at a rest stop every 1 1/2 hours. That way we can put in a full day of driving and still eel good.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:25 PM
  #22

A few years ago my sweet friend was killed at a rest area when she stopped alone. I believe it's the one Spedder mentioned. It was horrific. I will not go in another one.
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We don't have
Old 04-03-2017, 07:47 AM
  #23

many left in Maine. Too much "stuff" going on in them after dark! I do have very fond memories of stopping there on picnics and such. Not many families picnic anymore either!
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Old 04-03-2017, 08:16 AM
  #24

Not that I went on a lot of long road trips, but not really, but I like that they're there.
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