How Much Does It Cost to Road Trip from Denver to Los Angeles?

by Gigi Griffis

After six chaotic weeks back in Denver meeting up with friends, downsizing my possessions, and signing some of the coolest projects I’ve ever had the pleasure of working on, Luna and I packed our things into my purple Honda Fit and hit the road. Our destination: Southern California.

And just in case you’re wondering what a two-day road trip from Denver to L.A. costs for one small girl and her small dog…well:

Gas-wise, since we were in a super efficient Fit with an average 35+ miles per gallon, we came in just over $100. We stopped for gas a grand total of five times.

Gas: 112.47

Two full days on the road consisted of two full meals (one of which was a continental breakfast included in the cost of our hotel) and lots of snacking/small meals.

Food: 22.68

We stopped that first night in Cedar City, Utah and stayed at the Crystal Inn. It was clean, simple, and had a kick-ass continental breakfast (seriously, eggs, sausage, a waffle iron, french toast…). They only have a limited number of pet rooms and pricing can vary a little based on the type of room and pet fee. We got lucky, as we turned up and waltzed right into a relatively affordable pet-friendly room (this is the good news about traveling on a Wednesday).

Hotel: 71.70

And that’s all she wrote, folks. It was a whirlwind trip and while I originally intended to see Arches National Park (which would have cost $10 to enter, if you are wondering), once I got there I realized that I just wanted to keep moving (and to not pay $10). Instead, I had some tacos in Moab and headed straight back to the highway. Because I couldn’t wait to get to California. Our next adventure.

Interested in Colorado? I made something for you.

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Brief Roommate November 21, 2012 - 9:53 am

Noted, except someone who is not you would probably need to triple the food budget haha – the idea of only one full meal per day makes me hungry just thinking about it!

Gigi Griffis November 21, 2012 - 10:15 am

Ha. Possibly true. Except if you’re in the car all day doing nothing, you get bored more often than hungry, so you can probably make do with lunchables and muffins (which is what I mean when I say snacking or small meals).

Brief Roommate November 21, 2012 - 10:18 am

I’m surprised you didn’t just bring a bagel, which could have lasted you the whole trip :-)

Gigi Griffis November 21, 2012 - 10:24 am


Round the World Trips: Traveling is Not as Expensive as You Think | the ramble November 26, 2012 - 9:29 am

[…] Budgeting for the U.S. How much does it cost to road trip from Colorado to California? […]


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