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Jump to:
Driving in Alaska
Renting a car in Alaska
Buying a car in Alaska
Shipping a car to Alaska
Conclusion
 
renting-buying-shipping-a-car-in-alaska

 

Driving in Alaska

Driving in Alaska can be a real joy sometimes, while other times it can be extremely difficult. This is primarily based on weather conditions which are seasonal. Winter storms can easily make some roads impassable while, during the summer months, driving is quite easy and a pleasant experience because of the potential for sight-seeing.

Traffic is almost never an issue in Alaska. In the most populated areas like Anchorage, there is potential for moderate delays but usually isn’t any major traffic unless there is a serious accident. There generally aren’t enough people driving in Alaska for traffic to get out of hand.

Road conditions can be difficult at times due to weather as previously mentioned. However, the condition of the roads in Alaska can remain bad long after inclement weather because melting snow, ice and water gets into cracks in the pavement, freezes and cause larger cracks and potholes. So, be careful while driving and try to avoid potholes whenever possible.
 

Renting a car in Alaska

Renting a car in Alaska is a viable solution when you are only there for a few days. Beyond that, the expense of renting can really start to add up quickly. On top of that, you will also need to worry about getting any sort of damage on the car because you will be liable for it unless you have the rental insurance which doesn’t cover much regardless.

Renting a car for over a month can easily cost well over $1,000 and this depends on several things. First and foremost, the price of your rental car will depend heavily on which car you end up choosing to rent. Larger vehicles such as minivans will cost considerably more than a compact car or even a mid-size car.
 

Buying a car in Alaska

Buying a car gives you complete control over whatever you want to do with your car, but it is also the most expensive option on the list by far. If you are not permanently staying in Alaska, this option doesn’t make a ton of sense for you as you will eventually need to drive or even ship your car back home.

Buying a dependable used car will likely cost at least $10,000. Buying a new car will cost much more than that. It doesn’t make sense to buy a car unless you absolutely have to.
 

Shipping a car to Alaska

Finally, you can always ship your car to Alaska. Shipping your car to Alaska makes sense for those of you who are staying for any sort of extended period. Renting a car during a trip like this can add up quickly. Buying a car doesn’t make much sense because you will likely just end up shipping your car home anyway.

Consider that shipping your car cross-country from New York to Anchorage, Alaska will cost about $3,500 each way if you are shipping a regular sized sedan. That is much less than it will cost to buy a new or even used car. It is obviously cheaper to ship your car to or from Alaska the closer you are.
 

Conclusion

You will have choices to make regarding your transportation when you get to Alaska. You should decide long before you head there so you can plan and coordinate everything properly without having to worry about being without a car for a while.

If you do choose to ship your car to Alaska, you can trust the car shipping professionals at Alaska Car Transport to get your vehicle to Alaska safe and sound. Give us a call today for a free quote at (907) 331-3100!

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
General information about Alaska’s road system
Alaska’s Highways
Where you can drive in Alaska
Where you will need to take a plane or boat to
 
alaska-road

 

General information about Alaska’s road system

Alaska has almost fifteen thousand miles of public roads in the state. However, not all of its communities and towns are connected to each other by roads. Some areas are only accessible by plane or boat. Thus, it is important to know which roads and highways will lead where.

Inclement weather can play a big role in how easily you are able to navigate Alaska’s roads. Be sure you do not attempt to drive on any roads that are currently impassable. If you are only visiting Alaska, try to do so during the warmer summer months so that road conditions will be at their best. Although, you should still be on the lookout for wildlife crossing the road and road issues such as potholes.
 

Alaska’s Highways

Alaska has several major highways which connect much of the southern and middle parts of the state. The following is a breakdown of Alaska’s Highways:

  • Dalton Highway – The Dalton Highway is infamous for its long lonely trek that many consider quite dangerous as well. It is over four hundred miles long and connects the upper north of Alaska near Deadhorse with the rest of Alaska through its connection with Elliot Highway just north of Fairbanks. It is recommended you drive this road with someone and that you do not attempt to drive on the highway during any bad weather.
  • Alaska Highway – The most famous highway in Alaska, the Alaska Highway is over thirteen hundred miles long. It runs through Canada into Alaska. It runs from Dawson Creek in northwest Canada to Delta Junction in Fairbanks, Alaska. It is often referred to as a wonderful road trip experience due to all the great scenery along the route.
  • Edgerton Highway – Edgerton Highway is a short road, only thirty-three miles long, that extends from the Richardson Highway in Cooper Center to Chitina. On its route you will pass a popular fishery as well as an airport.
  • Denali Highway – The Denali Highway is a hundred and thirty-five miles long and runs from Paxson, Alaska to Cantwell, Alaska. The route includes, weather-permitting, great views of several glaciers and mountains. There are also several campsites along the route as well.
  • George Parks Highway – At three hundred and twenty-three miles long, the George Parks Highway connects from Palmer all the way to Fairbanks. The road includes exits for Wasilla, the Denali State Park, Denali National Park, Fairbanks and the Fairbanks airport.
  • Elliot Highway – Elliot Highway stretches from just north of Fairbanks up to an area called Manley Hot Springs. The total length of the highway is just over a hundred and fifty miles long. Much of the road is gravel and travel can be difficult during the winter months. Amenities are limited, so bring a full tank of gas and some extra food if you will be traveling on this road.
  • Haines Highway – At nearly a hundred and fifty miles long the Haines Highway in Alaska stretches from Haines in Alaska to Haines in Canada. The road has some breathtaking scenery as well as a stop at a bald eagle preserve.
  • Glenn Highway – The Glenn Highway spans well over three hundred miles. It spans from west to east from Anchorage to Glennallen. The road includes several primary exits for Anchorage as well as exits for Knik River and Palmer.
  • Klondike Highway – Almost four hundred and fifty miles long, the Klondike Highway in Alaska connects Dawson City, Canada with Skagway in Alaska. The route includes connections with a ferry terminal, Whitehorse and Alaska Highway.
  • Nome Road System – The Nome Road system is not accessible from anywhere in Alaska other than Nome itself. It is essentially about three hundred miles worth of roads surrounding Nome. The roads are mostly just for sightseeing or making stops to hike or fish. You can rent a car once you arrive in Nome by plane.
  • Richardson Highway – Richardson Highway stretches from Fairbanks to Valdez and is three hundred and sixty-eight miles long. The highway has exits for Willow Creek, Delta Junction, Alaska Highway and Denali National Park.
  • Steese Highway – This highway stretches from Fairbanks to Circle, Alaska and is over a hundred and sixty miles long. The Steese Highway is a National Scenic Byway.
  • Taylor Highway – Taylor Highway is a hundred and sixty miles long and spans from Tetlin Junction to Eagle. The highway has exits that lead to Chicken Airport, Eagle and Jack Wade Junction. The road can be fairly tricky to navigate at points due to its narrowness and curves so be careful when you are driving here.
  • Sterling/Seward Highway – The Seward Highway in Alaska totals a hundred and twenty-five miles in length. It starts in Seward and ends in Anchorage. The road has great sightseeing and fishing spots and it includes exits for the Alaska Railroad, Portage glacier and more.

 

Where you can drive in Alaska

You can drive most places in Alaska. There are some more remote places that you won’t be able to drive to which we will discuss below. But, places like Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, Palmer, Valdez, Denali, Wasillia and more are all accessible by car one way or another.

Some may be easier to drive to than others, but you can get there by car. When you drive in Alaska, be sure to check road conditions before you head out. Try and use an app like Waze which will give you up-to-date crowdsourced information on road and traffic conditions.
 

Where you will need to take a plane or boat to

Unfortunately, there are several areas in Alaska that you can only travel to by plane and/or boat. These areas include: Dutch Harbor, Kodiak, Bethel, Nome, Barrow, and Sitka.

You can travel to and from Juneau by car, but you will need to cut through Canada to do so.

For places like Dutch Harbor and Kodiak, you can easily take a ferry there. You can find more information about taking the Ferry in Alaska by reading this guide.

As for places like Nome and Barrow, consider taking a short flight there. You can learn more about getting flights to places like Nome here.

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
The basics about moving to Alaska
The best places to move to in Alaska
Tips for moving to Alaska
Conclusion

anchorage-alaska

 

The basics about moving to Alaska

Alaska is a wonderful place to live, however, not everyone would absolutely love it. For example, if you cannot deal with the thought of living with some colder weather, the move to Alaska might not be for you. Alaska has other caveats too such as the wildlife and some periods in certain areas where the night lasts for weeks.

There are also things like the northern lights and the fact that the government pays you to live there to help incentivize you to live there. Either way, if you are moving to Alaska, you will need to be prepared.

You should know too that not all of Alaska is connected by roadways. There are some areas and places that are only accessible by boat and/or plane. Although the larger and more incorporated cities are easily accessible by road.

The people of Alaska are generally pretty friendly and helpful. However, some of them can be fairly reclusive and reluctant to speak to anyone they deem a stranger.

Overall, life in Alaska is quaint and charming. We definitely recommend that you give it a chance if you are considering it!
 

The best places to move to in Alaska

  1. Anchorage – The biggest, most populated and most famous Alaskan city is number one on our list of best places to move to in Alaska. The city has almost three hundred thousand people living there according to a 2018 estimate. The climate has some extremes throughout the year averaging as low as 5 degrees in the winter to as high as 78 degrees in the summer. Jobs available are from a variety of fields including tourism, transportation, military, general business and more. The culture of Anchorage includes a performing arts center, multiple museums, college sports, the annual Iditarod sled race and more. Anchorage is also home to a variety of wildlife including bears and moose. It has a bunch of schools and a couple of hospitals that service the area.
  2. Fairbanks – The second city on this list has a population of over thirty-two thousand people according to a 2018 estimation. Fairbanks has very cold weather sometimes. Temperatures can drop as low as 40 below zero but during the short yet warm summer, they can reach as high as 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The city also gets a considerable amount of snow each year. The economy is based around jobs in transportation and government primarily. The city has some nearby schools and hospitals that service the area.
  3. Juneau – Alaska’s capital is another great spot to move to on our list. There are a good number of jobs available in government, tourism and fishing. The city has a population of over thirty thousand according to a 2018 estimate. Temperatures are actually pretty moderate in Juneau. Most of the year, the temperature averages fall between 32 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. The culture includes a professional theatre that produces plays as well as a few music festivals. It does rain or snow in Juneau over two hundred days a year on average. It has several schools and a hospital.
  4. Ketchikan – Ketchikan is the next city on the list with a population of just over eight thousand people. The climate is pretty mild and wet with temperatures normally ranging from about 30 degrees Fahrenheit to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also a considerable amount of rain throughout each year.
  5. Badger – Badger is the last city on the list but it still deserves your consideration for moving. The city has a population of just over twenty thousand people. The most numerous jobs in Badger are in transportation, construction and retail. The city has some nearby schools and hospitals that service the area as well.

 

Tips for moving to Alaska

  • Prepare for the cost of living – The cost of living in Alaska is fairly high by comparison to many other places in the United States. This includes the cost of food and rent/property as well.
  • Get some warm winter clothes before you go – The winter months in most places can be particularly cold. Be sure to have what you need to in order to bundle up.
  • Be sure you stay there at least a year as a citizen – If you live in Alaska as a citizen for at least a year you will receive a permanent fund dividend. This is money that the state will pay you for living there. It’s just under a thousand bucks per person each year.
  • Learn about specific safety precautions before you head there – There are things in Alaska such as bears and frostbite that you need to be aware of and how to avoid them. Do this before you travel to Alaska.
  • Get ready for odd daylight hours – In Alaska, there are periods in certain areas where the sun will not come up for extended periods and other times where it will not go down for extended periods. Research this before you head there so you are mentally prepared.

 

Conclusion

Alaska is definitely a state like no other. In fact, moving there will take some adjustments. However, that doesn’t mean it is not a great place to live. You just need to be properly prepared to make a few changes. Once you do it can be a really nice place to live, work and raise a family.

Once you do make the decision to move to Alaska, you will have the decision of driving all the way there, selling your car and buying a new one, or shipping your car there. If you do decide to ship your car there, go with the experts at Puerto Rico Car Transport.

Jump to:
Basic info about the Alaska Railroad
Alaska Railroad’s route
Interesting facts about the Alaska Railroad
Conclusion

alaska-railroad

 

Basic info about the Alaska Railroad

The Alaska Railroad is Alaska’s train line which opened over a hundred years ago. It runs from the center of Alaska near Fairbanks down to southern Alaska in Seward and runs in both directions.

It is not only a great way to get from one area of Alaska to another, it is a wonderful and very comfortable way to sight-see. In fact, some of the trains are primarily intended for sight-seeing. There are five different trains you can take on the Alaska Railroad, some of which run year-round and some run seasonally. The trains are:

  • Coastal Classic – The Coastal Classic runs from Anchorage to Girdwood and Girdwood to Seward and in the opposite direction for both of those trips. Ticket prices vary based on the class of ticket you choose, what time of year that you are traveling and the age of the passenger. If one adult traveled from Anchorage to Seward round-trip during the summer with the regular class ticket the trip would cost just over $300.

    The Costal Classic only runs during the summer but a trip on this rail line does include some fantastic views of Alaska’s mountains and wilderness.

  • Denali Star – The Denali Star runs from Anchorage to Fairbanks. That full trip is divided into separate trips from Anchorage to Wasilla, Wasilla to Talkeetna, Talkteena to Denali and Denali to Fairbanks. The line has the same division of stops going south as well.

    This is the most popular train on the Alaska Railroad. It only runs in the summer from May through September but that is more than enough time to take a few trips on the outstanding route. The route includes great views of rivers, mountains and canyons. As with the other Alaska Railroad trains, ticket prices will vary based on the type of class you pick, the passenger’s age and the time of year that you are traveling. If one adult traveled from Anchorage to Fairbanks in June with a roundtrip ticket it would cost $498.

  • Glacier Discovery – The Glacier Discovery train is exactly what it sounds like, a train with a route where you will have breathtaking views of glaciers. The train runs from May to September travels from Anchorage to Whittier with several stops in and around Girdwood and Portage.

    The prices of the tickets for this train will vary based on the age of the passenger, the class of ticket that you choose and when you are traveling. If one adult took a round-trip on this line in June from Anchorage to Whittier, the ticket would cost $100.

  • Hurricane Turn – The Hurricane Turn train runs year-round with a different route in both winter and summer. During the summer the train travels from Talkeetna to Hurricane with stops in Chase, Curry, Sherman, Gold Creek, Twin Bridges and Chulitna. In the winter the train travels from Anchorage to Hurricane with stops in Wasilla, Talkteena, Chase, Curry, Sherman, Gold Creek, Twin Bridges and Chulitna.

    The trip includes renowned and panoramic views of Alaska’s rivers and valleys. The prices of the tickets for this train will vary based on the age of the passenger, the class of ticket that you choose and when you are traveling. If one adult took a round-trip on this line in June from Talkeetna to Hurricane, the ticket would cost just over $100.

  • Aurora Winter – As the name suggests, the Aurora Winter Train only runs during the winter and on weekends only. In December, February and March there is some select mid-week service but normally the train only runs on weekends during the winter. The train travels from Anchorage to Fairbanks with stops in Wasilla, Talkeetna, Hurricane, Healy and Nenana.

    As with all the other trains, ticket prices vary based on several factors. If one adult was going to take a round-trip on this train in January from Anchorage to Fairbanks it would cost $432.

 

Alaska Railroad’s route

The Alaska Railroad make stops at the following places on its route:

  • Eielson Air Force Base
  • Fairbanks
  • Nenana
  • Denali
  • Talkeetna
  • Wasilla
  • Palmer
  • Anchorage
  • Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport
  • Girdwood
  • Whittier
  • Portage
  • Grandview
  • Seward

The railroad also includes several “flag stops” which are stops that are not scheduled but can be “flagged” by a passenger if they need to get off there. These stops include: Hurricane, Chulitna, Twin Bridges, Canyon, Gold Creek, Sherman, Deadhorse, Curry, and Chase.

The full route is 470 miles and would take over sixteen hours to get from Seward to Fairbanks. However, this would require a transfer and a likely layover.
 

Interesting facts about the Alaska Railroad

  • There are several “event trains” that run during the year for special occasions. These trains include an Easter train, a kids Halloween train, a family fun train, a beer train and more. You can find more specific information on these trains here.
  • Kids under two can ride for free but only if they sit on your lap. If you want them to have their own seat you will need to buy a kid’s ticket.
  • Several trains feature glass dome seating for certain ticket levels, visit the Alaska Railroad Website for more information on how to get a seat in one of these cars.
  • There are senior and military discounts available. Your best bet to get one of these rates, if you qualify, is to give them a call.
  • Over the years, the Alaska Railroad has won awards from National Geographic Traveler, USA Today Travel, Trip Advisor, and the National Tour Association.

 

Conclusion

The Alaska Railroad is one of the most popular ways to see the great state of Alaska. It’s a cozy and comfortable trip yet it includes breathtaking and expansive views of much of Alaska’s natural beauty. The trains include some great amenities including dinning cars, comfortable seating and some even have bar cars. Do yourself a favor and be sure to take a trip on the Alaska Railroad as soon as you get the chance!

Posted in: Uncategorized

Jump to:
Car battery basics
The way a car battery reacts to temperature
Keep the battery clean
Keep the battery charged

car-battery-alaska

 
It is never too early to start thinking about winter preparations in Alaska, especially for your car. Winterizing your car is essential for driving in Alaska and one of the most crucial parts of making sure that your car is ready to roll this winter will be making sure that your battery is ready for the winter.
 

Car battery basics

You depend on your car battery to operate properly in order for your car to be able to start. Everyone knows that, but not everyone is aware that taking certain steps to care for your battery can make or break its performance later on.

First, and most obviously, the way the battery is connected makes a tremendous difference in the performance or lack thereof of your car battery. If you leave the connection loose, you could possibly hit a bump in the road and knock the connection off. This would cause the car to lose all power and stop wherever you were driving. This is obviously something that could be incredibly dangerous.

Also, car battery connections can become corroded over time. Be sure that your battery’s connections are not corroded, if they are, then get your battery serviced or replace the battery.

Next, the battery should not be that old because batteries lose the ability to hold a charge over time. The older a battery gets, the more likely it could end up dying on you. You should replace your car battery every five years.
 

The way a car battery reacts to temperature

As you might expect, the temperature outside has a considerable effect on the battery. Very hot temperatures (over 90 degrees) can accelerate corrosion on the inside of a car battery. This can considerably lower a battery’s ability to retain a charge.

Cold temperatures can affect the battery’s ability to provide power to the car. The colder out it is, the slower your battery can effectively deliver power to your car. If it is cold enough, batteries can even freeze. This is fairly rare, but it can occur. It is dependent on the level of charge your battery is carrying.
 

Keep the battery clean

Like pretty much anything else in your car’s engine, how clean your battery is directly affects its performance. Obviously, you should make sure that you wipe away any excess dirt or grime, but corrosion is the biggest issue in terms of keeping the battery clean.

After the warmer summer months, your battery likely has a bit more corrosion than normal. Before the winter cold hits, you should clean any corrosion and dirt from the battery.

Here is how you can clean your car battery:

  1. Mix some baking soda with some water
  2. Take the cables off the battery (the car must be off before you do this).
  3. Take an old toothbrush and dip it in the baking soda and water mixture, then start gently scrubbing off the corrosion and dirt.
  4. Wipe off any residue left from the baking soda.
  5. Put a bit of petroleum jelly on the battery terminals (this will help prevent corrosion in the future).
  6. Re-attach the battery cables.

 

Keep the battery charged

As we already mentioned, your car battery loses its ability to hold its charge as time goes on. Extreme temperatures in the winter can help accelerate how quickly your battery can lose its charge. This is obviously something that you should be concerned with if you live in Alaska. However, there are some simple ways that you can help keep your battery charged.

Here are some tips to help keep your car battery charged:

  • Wait a few moments before you turn on your accessories – In the winter you might want to turn everything on as soon as you jump in your car but if you wait a minute or two before you turn the heat, lights and radio on you will give the battery a chance to grab some charge off of the alternator.
  • Park the car with the front facing away from the wind – The car should always be parked with the front facing away from the primary direction of the wind. So, if the wind is blowing north the car should be facing north. This way the majority of the wind is hitting the rear of the car which will protect the battery from the wind and its effects. If you have a garage to park your car in that is even better.
  • Keep the battery clean – We know we just mentioned it above, but it is worth mentioning again, keeping your car battery clean greatly improves performance and overall battery life.
Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
Basic info about car clubs
The list of car clubs located in Alaska
Helpful tips for joining a car club
Conclusion

car-club-in-alaska

 

Basic info about car clubs

If you live in Alaska and have some spare time, joining a local car club is a great way to spend it. It is also a good way to showcase a car that your proud of or to show how much passion you might have for a particular type of car.

These clubs will require very affordable annual membership dues. Most will be between $25 and $100. Most of these clubs do not require that you own one of their cars either. So, you can still join if you are just passionate about a certain type of car.

These clubs hold both monthly and annual meetings and events. So, as much as participation is not necessarily required, it is recommended that you take part in the clubs’ activities as much as you can.
 

The list of car clubs located in Alaska

The following are a few of the oldest and most popular car clubs that you can join in Alaska:

  • Alaska Sports Car Club – Alaska Sports Car Club was founded back in 1958. Membership is through the Alaska Lions Club and costs $100 per person or $150 for a four-member family. The club holds multiple events each year including races, fundraisers and much more.
  • Artic Air-Cooled VWs – Artic Air Cooled VWs is a club dedicated to the Air-Cooled Volkswagen in Alaska. You do not need to own a VW for membership so you can join if you are just an enthusiast. The membership fee is $24 per year.
  • Antique Auto Mushers of Alaska – Antique Auto Mushers of Alaska is a car club dedicated to antique cars. To join you do not need to own an Antique vehicle, but you do need a membership in the Antique Automobile Club of America which costs $40 each year. The club has monthly meetings with club cruises after the meetings during the summer months.
  • Anchorage Corvette Association – The Anchorage Corvette Association was founded in 1969. The club charges $40 for new members and $30 for renewals as well as $50 for families to join. They hold monthly meetings as well as several cruises and other events each year.

 

Helpful tips for joining a car club

Before you join a new car club, there’s a few things that you should know first. Here are a few tips to consider when joining a car club:

  • Reach out to the club or a member with any questions you might have – You will want to reach out to the club or a member of the club directly with any questions or concerns that you might have.
  • Most clubs won’t require you to own one of their cars – If you are just an enthusiast of a certain type of car and do not personally own one, you can likely still join the club. Just contact the individual club and ask them before you send a membership payment.
  • Be sure to take care of your vehicle – If you plan on showing your car off at a car club’s events, make sure that you keep the car clean and that you get the required maintenance to make sure that the car is running properly. It would be off-putting to fellow members if your car wasn’t working or was really dirty.
  • Get involved – It does not make sense for you to join a car club if you are not going to actively participate in the club’s activities. Be sure to take part in meetings, cruises, shows and whatever else the club holds as much as you can.

 

Conclusion

Joining a car club is a fantastic way to spend some of your extra time. It is a fun hobby where you can meet other car enthusiasts just like yourself and have some serious car conversation. You won’t regret the memorable experience of joining a car club.

If you are in Alaska and want to join a car club but want your car shipped there first, contact Alaska Car Transport today for a free quote and more information on how we can get your car to Alaska safe and sound!

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
Basic info about the Northern Lights
Where and when to see the northern lights and directions to get there
Tips for seeing the Northern Lights
Conclusion

northern-lights-in-alaska

 

Basic info about the Northern Lights

The Northern Lights, otherwise known as the Aurora Borealis, is absolutely one of the most magnificent sights that you can take in on the entire planet. The Northern Lights are when electrically charged particles collide with one another and, as a result, a natural and incredible display of colorful glowing light is seen in the sky.

These lights are often described as “dancing” because the particle collisions that cause these displays are moving as they occur. They can only be seen in areas with very low levels of light pollution and generally only in areas somewhere near the magnetic poles where these particle interactions occur.

So, that makes Alaska one of the very best places to see one of these amazing displays. The combination of its proximity to the magnetic poles and the low amount of light pollution make Alaska a prime spot to view the northern lights.
 

Where and when to see the northern lights and directions to get there

The following is a list of the best places in Alaska to see the Northern Lights and directions to get there:

  • Fairbanks – Fairbanks is just about as perfect of a spot to view the Northern Lights a you will find. The city sits just about below the middle of the lights. The only issue being the slight to moderate amount of light pollution coming from Fairbanks as it is one of Alaska’s largest cities. We recommend you travel a couple miles north of Fairbanks for the absolute best viewing experience.
  • Denali National Park – The Denali National Park is another great spot to check out the Northern Lights as it is only a couple miles south of Fairbanks and will have next to no light pollution corrupting your view.
  • Anchorage – Alaska’s biggest city obviously also has the most light pollution but if you can venture out a few miles, you will still have a great view of the northern lights in Alaska.
  • Nome – A much lesser known and frequented area of Alaska, Nome is much further north than the other places (with the exception of Fairbanks) on this list thus it is just as good if not better than they are for seeing the northern lights. It is also much less populated too so light pollution will be at a minimum. However, the caveat here is that you won’t be able to drive to Nome, you will need to take a flight from Anchorage.

 

Tips for seeing the Northern Lights

When you are investing your time, effort and money into seeing the Northern Lights you will want to make sure that you have the best experience possible. Here are some tips so you can get the most out of seeing the Northern Lights:

  • March is the peak time to see them – The full season to see the Northern Lights is September through April. However, March has always been the best month to see the Northern Lights both in terms of intensity of the lights and their frequency as well.
  • Take pictures using long exposure capture – You will absolutely want to take some pictures of the Northern Lights. However, if you want some really breathtaking pictures, you should bring a camera that has the ability to use long exposure capture.
  • Ship your car to Alaska – You will just about need to have your car in order to get the full experience of the Northern Lights. Skip the expense and endless rules of a rental car and ship your car to Alaska today!
  • Keep an eye on the forecast – It goes without saying that you will need clear skies in order to see the Northern Lights. So, be sure you check the weather forecast before you head out to see the lights, otherwise you might just end up staring into a rain cloud.
  • Try an App – There are actually some apps out there that can give you up-to-date information so that you can choose the best times and spots to see the Northern Lights. We recommend Aurora Forecast.

 

Conclusion

The Northern Lights are some of the very best sights that Alaska has to offer. If you are ever in Alaska, they are an absolute must see. Just be sure that you plan your Aurora Borealis sight-seeing experience accordingly, so you don’t run into any obstacles such as bad weather. Otherwise, there is no excuse to miss this magnificent sight!

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
History of Alaska Highway
Basic information about Alaska Highway
The best places to stop along the way
Tips for driving on Alaska Highway
Conclusion

alaska-highway

 

History of Alaska Highway

Alaska Highway was originally built as a supply route for the American military during the second World War in the 1940’s. Regular civilians did not have access to drive on the road until 1948. After the war, the Canadian part of the highway was turned over to Canada.

Then in the 50’s and 60’s the vast majority of the road was paved over by both the United States and Canada in their respective portions of the highway.

Since then it has been considered one of the primary ways to drive into Alaska from both Canada and the United States.
 

Basic information about Alaska Highway

The highway runs from Dawson Creek in British Columbia to Delta Junction in Alaska and is seventeen hundred miles long. Since Canada took control of its portion of the highway, it has shortened the highway by almost forty miles mainly by bypassing residential areas.

The highway is so long you could encounter different types of weather conditions along the way. Although it is extremely rare for the highway to close because of weather, you might want to consider taking a trip on this highway only in the spring or summer months as the weather can get pretty bad on occasion in the winter time on certain stretches of the highway.

The highway takes about 5 days to drive if you are driving for over twelve hours a day. We recommend you only drive for eight hours per day.
 

The best places to stop along the way

There are pits stops you can make for gas and amenities like food or lodging every thirty to fifty miles or so. There are also historic mileposts along the highway. In many cases, people in residential areas use these mileposts to refer to their location by word of mouth or even in their mailing address.

Towards the start of your drive on the Alaska Highway, you will encounter exits for Fort Nelson and the Heritage Museum. Later in the drive, you can stop off and see the Liard river, Coal river, contact creek and Watson Lake. This is around the five to six-hundred-mile mark.

Later in the drive, you can stop off at the George Johnston Museum as well as the Teslin Tlingit Heritage Centre.

Around the eight-hundred-and-eighty-mile mark, you can stop off at the Wolf Creek Yukon Government campground for some r&r. You can also visit the famous and wonderful town off Whitehorse.

Then, just before the nine-hundred-mile mark you can visit Dawson City. You can also quickly connect with the Takhini Hot Springs, Hot Springs Campground and Hostel and Yukon Wildlife Preserve.

Just before the thousand-mile mark, you can stop off at Haines Junction.

Just before the fourteen-hundred-mile mark, you can visit the quaint town of Delta Junction.

Finally, towards the end of the highway, you will have reached the North Pole.
 

Tips for driving on Alaska Highway

  • Bring extra supplies – Load your car up with extra windshield wipers, a spare tire, extra gas, food, a first aid kit and more. You never know when an emergency situation might arise.
  • Stay Alert – There are hazards such as wildlife which could pop up on the road occasionally. Make sure that you stay alert. You can do so by drinking coffee, an energy drink or even by keeping your window open for fresh air.
  • Get some rest – Make sure you get a good amount of sleep before you venture out on such as long drive. You definitely don’t want to fall asleep while you are driving.
  • Bring a friend – You should have at least one person to talk to and switch off driving with. You should not try and drive more than eight hours in a day.
  • Take pictures – Driving this road is an experience that you will never want to forget. Make sure you snap some photos to look back on, while you aren’t in the middle of driving of course.

 

Conclusion

The Alaska Highway is a must for anyone who wants the truest Alaska experience. You can see and enjoy much of the gorgeous expanse that makes the state so great.

If you are headed to Alaska and want to skip the awful rental process, you can always ship your car there with Alaska Car transport. Give us a call today and we’ll get your car to Alaska without a problem.

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
When is the best time to go to Alaska?
Decide what you want to do and see in Alaska
What will you need to bring?
Where are you going to stay?
Start getting ready for your Alaskan trip
Conclusion

plan-for-your-trip-to-alaska

 

When is the best time to go to Alaska?

If you are going to be traveling to Alaska for a vacation or extended trip, you should think about when exactly that will be. The winters can be brutally cold and full of inclement weather. The fall might be alright to visit during if you head there earlier on in the season.

However, the later part of the spring and throughout the summer have classically been when most people end up visiting Alaska.
 

Decide what you want to do and see in Alaska

There are a ton of great sights and attractions to see in Alaska. In fact, there are too many to see on one trip. So, you will need to pick and choose which sights you want to see exactly.

You can always take any of the various tours that exist. These are a great and efficient way to see a bunch of sights in one shot while you have the help of an expert guide at your side. In fact, we recommend trying at least one of the many great helicopter tours.

The following are the most popular tourist attractions in Alaska:

  • Denali National Park – Probably the most popular attraction in Alaska, this park is home to all sorts of wonderful wildlife such as bears, wolves, birds, elk, reindeer and more. It also has some of the most scenic geography in all of Alaska including mountains, tundra and more.
  • Glacier Bay National Park – A must see spot in Alaska, Glacier Bay National Park has some of the most picturesque glacier views in the entire world. It boasts some of the world’s most amazing glaciers as well as views of whales and penguins too.
  • Alaska Highway – Alaska Highway is one of the most scenic routes in North America and an experience that you will not soon forget either. You will be able to see the lush wilderness in ways you likely didn’t think possible.
  • Alaska Railroad – This railroad will take you through some of Alaska’s most popular areas including Anchorage, Denali National Park and more all while you enjoy a relaxing and amenity filled train ride.

 

What will you need to bring?

You will need to take several things with you on your trip so you are prepared to venture out to see all that Alaska has to offer.
These are some of the things you should bring with you on a trip to Alaska:

  • A GPS or roadmap – There will be several areas in Alaska where your phone will not get any service, especially when you are out on the road. So, you will need a backup if you are driving yourself around to each destination. You can pre-program most GPS so that you won’t need to have it connected to the internet.
  • A portable phone charger – If you are out seeing the sights for an entire day, you will likely lose the charge on your phone. If you have a portable charger, you can get your phone charged back up without needing to worry about stopping somewhere to do so.
  • Your roadside assistance card – If you get stuck out on the road in Alaska, you might need some help. With a Triple-A you could avoid that awful situation with just a phone call.
  • Some snacks – Unfortunately, some of the highways in Alaska have long stretches without any stops where you can stop to get something to eat. Bring some snacks such as protein bars to help get you through any trips that you might be taking.
  • Extra emergency supplies – Just in case you do happen to get stuck out on the road while you are traveling, you will want to have some extra emergency supplies with you. Things like extra windshield wipers, road flares, kitty litter (for tire traction), and a spare tire could be the difference between completing your trip and getting stuck out on the road.

 

Where are you going to stay?

You will also need to figure out where you are going to stay during your Alaskan excursion. This will be heavily dependent on what you are planning on seeing while you are in Alaska. For example, if you are mostly interested in the National Parks it would make sense that you stay in Anchorage as it is pretty much in the middle of several National Parks.

Here are some of the most popular places people stay while they are visiting Alaska:

  • Anchorage – As we just mentioned, Anchorage is a great place to stay if you are planning on checking out the incredible national parks in Alaska. It is also the best place in Alaska to stay in terms of restaurants, hotels and other amenities as over half of Alaska’s population live in Anchorage and the neighboring areas.
  • Juneau – Juneau is another great place to stay if you are visiting Alaska. It has a considerably smaller population than Anchorage but still has over thirty thousand people living there. The hotels and restaurants are excellent in Juneau as well. Staying in Juneau will afford you the best opportunity to visit the Glacier Bay National Park.
  • Kodiak – If you plan on visiting the National Parks in Kodiak, then Kodiak is a fantastic place to stay. Its population isn’t huge, but it is still around seven thousand people at any given time. There are also a bunch of good options for dining and lodging. There are also a bunch of museums and even a brewery on the island just in case you get bored of the nature preserve (you won’t).

 

Start getting ready for your Alaskan trip

Make sure that by the time you are ready to leave for Alaska, you are completely ready for your trip there. Get the right clothes and be sure that all your travel arrangements are set in stone.

If you are going in the spring, you will want to bring warmer clothes but not quite a full winter outfit. Bringing a heavy jacket, light jacket and some gloves is your best bet to be prepared for all sorts of temperatures.

If you are going during the summer, then you should pack for weather between fifty and eighty degrees. Temperatures at night can drop pretty low compared to the average highs of seventy or eighty degrees. Of course, all of this depends on where you are in Alaska. The state is so big that temperatures can vary by over thirty degrees between the north and south parts of the state. Odds are that you will be in the lower part of the state.
 

Conclusion

Your trip to Alaska will take effort and the proper planning but it will be well worth it once you arrive there and start to experience the incredible wilderness, beauty and expanse that Alaska has to offer.

The preparation for your trip will involve a lot of decision making including the decision about what to see and what to leave for your next trip to Alaska.

If you are visiting Alaska for a more extended stay, it might make sense for you to ship your car there rather than ship it. If you choose to ship a car to Alaska, or you just have questions about the vehicle transport process, give us a call today at (907) 331-3100.

Posted in: Alaska Car Shipping

Jump to:
The benefits to taking a defensive driving course in Alaska
Why taking the course online is easier
Providers of online defensive driving courses for Alaska
Conclusion

defensive-driving-in-alaska

 

The benefits to taking a defensive driving course in Alaska

The primary and best benefit to taking a defensive course in Alaska, or any where for that matter, is the cost of your car insurance will drop significantly. On average, you can expect to save about 10% annually in Alaska as a result of taking a defensive driving course. However, some providers like E-surance will give up to a 15% discount for taking such a course. Things like your age and previous driving record will also play a role in how big a discount you can get for taking a defensive driving course.

Taking a defensive driving course can also help you reverse the effects of a previous traffic violation. You can reduce points that you received on your license by taking a defensive driving course for example.
 

Why taking the course online is easier

These classes take between four and eight hours to complete. The in-person classes usually take four or five hours and are usually held at night or on the weekend at a driving school. The online classes can easily be completed from the comfort of your own home at a pace that suits you over the course of a month.

So, if you wanted to take it easy and complete a half hour at a time, you could do the online course that way. You could not do that with the in-person course. You would need to complete the course in one four or five hour segment after work or on the weekend.
 

Providers of online defensive driving courses for Alaska

The following are the recommended and DMV-approved online defensive driving providers for Alaska.

  • AARP – This course costs $25 and will take 8 hours. You have thirty days to complete it once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • Go To Traffic School – This course costs $30 and will take 8 hours. You have thirty days to complete it once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • Traffic School Online – This course costs $30 plus an in-person testing fee that can range from 9 to 15 dollars. The course will take 8 hours to complete. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • Safe2Drive – This course costs $24. The course will take 8 hours to complete. You will have 30 days to complete the course once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • I drive Safely- – This course costs $26. The course will take 8 hours and you will have 30 days to complete the course once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • DrivingUniversity.com – The course costs $30 plus about $8 in shipping for the course completion certificate. The course is 8 hours long and you will have 30 days to complete it once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.
  • AlaskaDriver.com – This course costs $40 and will take 8 hours to complete. You will have 30 days to complete it once you start it. The final exam must be taken in person at a testing center.

 

Conclusion

So, you can avoid having to spend 4 to 8 hours taking the course after-work or on the weekend by taking the online version. You will need to show up in person to take the final exam but that only takes less than an hour in most cases. Plus you can take the course at your own pace and in small increments each day.

Posted in: Uncategorized