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Buying tickets home for Thanksgiving, question for Dartmouth students and parents

WiganUKWiganUK 3 replies1 threads New Member
I'm trying to hedge my bets with a tickets home for my '22. The calendar says the "scheduled final exams" end on 11/20 and the "final exam period" ends 11/21. I'm guessing it's safe to fly out on 11/21 and that we'll be lucky to get our '22 home earlier.

Also, how early must one book on the Dartmouth Coach? I realize it's a long time off, but planning for the homecoming cheers me up.
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Replies to: Buying tickets home for Thanksgiving, question for Dartmouth students and parents

  • AboutTheSameAboutTheSame 3201 replies48 threads Senior Member
    https://dartmouthcoach.com/faqs/: "Reservations are not taken or accepted for service to Boston South Station and Logan International Airport. All service is first come, first board. Please arrive 20 minutes before bus departure. Every effort will be made to accommodate all passengers during peak travel times. Tickets may be purchased in advance, but do not guarantee a seat. You are not making a reservation when you purchase your ticket online."

    They were always good at running in extra buses as needed. Never heard of anyone being left behind, but I think D did sit on the floor one time.
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  • IvylogueIvylogue 48 replies0 threads Junior Member
    The residential housing webpage says that the houses close at noon on 11/21, so your '22 would need to plan on leaving no later than then, unless you make special arrangements. My D was sometimes able to leave 2-3 days before the end of the regular exam period, depending on the exam schedule for the specific courses taken. As to the Coach, there was never a problem getting a seat for the ride to Logan, although technically you don't have a reservation. We usually bought the Coach tickets about 1-2 weeks before the departure date. I actually called the Coach's office the first year to make sure we wouldn't have a problem; they told me they routinely schedule extra buses at the end of the terms, some of which were express buses that didn't make all the interim stops before Logan. If there happens to be snow or ice on the ground at the time, it's a good idea to head over to the Inn to wait for the Coach a little earlier than usual because it can be a longer walk when you have to drag a suitcase across the snow and ice!
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  • baxterbaxter 151 replies12 threads Junior Member
    @WiganUK I know you aren’t sure of his schedule yet but you can get a good sense of his scheduled exams by looking up his likely classes on the class listings and then the finals schedule. For example, maybe you know he will want to take Math 8, Chem 5 and French. You can look up those finals. If he is in writing or the seminar for the first term they are really paper classes and done before finals or submitted electronically. Hope this helps!
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  • b1ggreencab1ggreenca 555 replies11 threads Member
    I would wait until he gets his syllabi on the first day of school so he will know when his finals are. We did the same thing that you are doing, in our son's first year, and he ended up having to stay on campus days longer than necessary, and was one of the last to leave. Since then we wait until school starts so we can get a more accurate read on when his finals will be, and thus he is able to fly home as soon as he's done. He was not happy having to stay there and twiddle his thumbs that first year, when he just wanted to get home!
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  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia 3914 replies26 threads Senior Member
    Can you book on Southwest? No change fee if it turns out that you have to change the outbound date for Thanksgiving break.
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  • HMom16HMom16 919 replies24 threads Member
    edited July 2018
    Also, Cape Air flies out of Lebanon. Its a small airline, relatively inexpensive and flies to Westchester, NY as well as locations to the south and west. While I don't think they offer refunds, they will generally give a credit against a future flight if your plans change.
    edited July 2018
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  • WiganUKWiganUK 3 replies1 threads New Member
    Thanks for the great advice @HMom16 @mamaedefamilia @b1ggreenca @baxter @Ivylogue @AboutTheSame. Will follow up with a question about the First Year Trips.... When a freshman needs to arrive "between 2-4pm" on a specific date, and the earliest arrival time is 5pm due to distance and travel times, what's a recommended inexpensive way to have them arrive the day before, when it's too soon to get into their dorm room? Staying the night near Logan is very expensive, yet so are the hotels walkable to campus. We won't be there to help.
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  • AboutTheSameAboutTheSame 3201 replies48 threads Senior Member
    I would call/email and see if arrangements can be made to get them into their room [or another room] the night before. You can't be the first person to have this issue. Also, the 2-4 time slot is probably for convenience. Key pass ought to available from campus security even after that. Is 5 pm the earliest in Hanover or the earliest at Logan? If it's the former, I'm willing to bet there's a simple solution, although they might miss some early evening activity.
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  • b1ggreencab1ggreenca 555 replies11 threads Member
    edited July 2018
    @WiganUK We have run into that same problem, and my son has taken an Uber to an affordable hotel from the Hanover bus stop, then Uber onto campus the next day. It's not ideal, but it lets them get in the day before and have a place to stay. BTW in our case it was the Residence Inn in Hanover/Lebanon, about 3 miles from campus.
    edited July 2018
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  • PupIsUpPupIsUp 8 replies2 threads New Member
    Thanks, @b1ggreenca - Very helpful tip! We may end up doing this.
    It's the former, @AboutTheSame, but that's with zero contingency. I've got a message in to the DOC, so hopefully they'll have tips, but the Dartmouth Parents thread is chockfull of good info, so had to ask here.
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  • sdteaksdteak 195 replies8 threads Junior Member
    @PupIsUp My D has the same issue since we live in a sparsely populated area. I looked at hotels in and around Hanover. In addition to Uber, there is a public transit system that makes stops in Hanover, Lebanon, White River Junction.

    I know they have to grow up sometime, but I felt that two solo flights followed by navigating her way through Boston Logan to the Dartmouth Coach, then a three hour bus ride was enough for a day, especially for a nervous/excited incoming freshman student. She had enough frequent flyer miles for a one-way ticket to Boston so I decided to pay $180 and have her stay alone at the Hanover Inn. The Dartmouth Coach stops right outside. I told her that if she finds another female student from the same trip section to share the room with her, then she can pocket half the money. ;)
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  • NorCalTootsieNorCalTootsie 58 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Just want to echo the advice to wait until the beginning of the term to schedule flights home. Not all classes hold formal final exams, so the end of term schedule is quite dependent on the student's particular combo of classes. It's easy to get onto the Dartmouth Coach, even without a ticket, because the driver will stop at a station that sells tickets and let passengers know to get off, buy it and get right back on. The Coach is very reliable and does bring extra buses for high traffic times of year.
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  • Adele123Adele123 30 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Hi. I am a current Dartmouth student. Regarding booking the coach tickets, I would wait till your child has their schedule to book tickets. The tickets to NY are the only ones that sell out as those are the only ones that reserve a seat. These tickets usually sell out 5 weeks into the term, so there is no need to book them before the term even starts.

    As far as Trips arrival, I honesty think it is fine if your child arrives an hour late. The first day of trips all takes place on campus and many students come in throughout the day. If you feel strongly about your child arriving a day early maybe contact the office of residential life and express your concern. The dorms are open right now as fall athletes have been on campus for over 2 weeks.
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