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BansheeOne

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Non-Citizens cannot tour the White House.

 

I don't think that's true but it's harder for foreigners.

 

I know the last time I tried to set one up it was US Citizens only but it looks like things have changed.

 

 

All foreign nationals must present their passport. All other forms of foreign identification will not be accepted.
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It looks like foreigners can only apply through their embassies, which might be the show stopper. However as a permanent resident I think I apply the same way as a citizen.

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I will start jumping through the legal hoops to see if I am allowed to be involved in the informal "Training of foreign nationals in the use of firearms" (while I personally have no issue with taking you guys to a range, I've been told previously that it is a "no-go" for me to do this sort of thing. Gotta love the obscene levels of paranoia of US Gov't officials).

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  • 4 weeks later...

Invite sent to Pat.

Date range sent to Marc at VMMV to arrange. I figure the time slot will probably be a weekday as that's usually when Marc is at the Museum.

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Seems I could make it this time, but looking to two weeks in Samland. Did not take vacation time last year.

 

Sheraton Reston looks nice and affordable.

 

Is there any trustable website with airline comparison? I've seen Aer Lingus, Turkish Airlines, and some unknown company are very cheap, but I wonder if there is a reason for that cheapness.

 

Also seems United is the only carrier with a direct flight. What are your opinions of that airline?

Edited by sunday
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I've flown United several times on the EWR - *some EU airport* route, they're OK. Nothing special I guess but solid. I think once I flew Continental ? and they had AC power outlets on every seat so that was awesome. Lufthansa is always a safe bet but they share flights with United so sometimes you think you're going with Lufthansa and actually board a United flight.

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Thanks, United and Lufthansa seems the way to go, as they share codes in that nonstop trip.

Curious, the cheapest flight for a while was Aeroflot via Moscow.

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Thanks, United and Lufthansa seems the way to go, as they share codes in that nonstop trip.

Curious, the cheapest flight for a while was Aeroflot via Moscow.

From about 2-6 years ago, when looking for flights on the number of times I went between the US and Japan, the same kind of curious thing was there. Usually the flights that stopped at Shanghai were cheaper. IIRC, those were always operated by a Chinese airline. Completely out of the way, and thus doubles, or more, the time of travel. I don't think I've ever flown on those. The Pacific is wide enough as it is for a simple direct flight.

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Sheraton Reston to Smithsonian Air&Space Museum, in the National Mall, is about 1 hour 10 minutes by metro. Air conditioning on Washington Metro cars has reliability issues. See here. However, if we are going to the DC only three or four days, a rental vehicle could not be necessary.

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I wouldn't trust the Metro to get anybody anywhere. I actually gave up riding metro a while back. Too many people have died, and FAR too many people put in danger by the shoddy management and careless operations....[long rant truncated]. Much of the Metro system is currently offline and/or experiencing MASSIVE delays impacting the line towards Dulles for (long overdue) maintenance. While you CAN use Metro to get downtown from Reston, I would figure double or more the time estimates. Outside of the Rush Hours it is manageable to drive, and with 2 or more people in the vehicle, it is actually quite manageable during rush hour (when I have to go into Arlington and can take the HOV lanes, I can usually get there from roughly Reston in about half an hour. I could get all the way downtown in not much longer.)

 

Was the downtown Air&Space on the docket? I thought the Udvar-Hazy (Dulles) Air&Space was the plan (or are we planning both).

Edited by CT96
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I wouldn't trust the Metro to get anybody anywhere. I actually gave up riding metro a while back. Too many people have died, and FAR too many people put in danger by the shoddy management and careless operations....[long rant truncated]. Much of the Metro system is currently offline and/or experiencing MASSIVE delays impacting the line towards Dulles for (long overdue) maintenance. While you CAN use Metro to get downtown from Reston, I would figure double or more the time estimates. Outside of the Rush Hours it is manageable to drive, and with 2 or more people in the vehicle, it is actually quite manageable during rush hour (when I have to go into Arlington and can take the HOV lanes, I can usually get there from roughly Reston in about half an hour. I could get all the way downtown in not much longer.)

 

Was the downtown Air&Space on the docket? I thought the Udvar-Hazy (Dulles) Air&Space was the plan (or are we planning both).

 

Wow! I saw something in several places about the management troubles on Washington Metro, but if the things do have descended to that level, better to keep away from it.

 

I did not factor-in the HOV lanes. That could solve most of the problems of getting downtown from the suburbs. No need to look city hotels like the storied Omni Shoreham. However, it could be nice to stay on it, like the Beatles.

 

I only used the downtown Air&Space to give Google Maps a reference to calculate travel time by public transport, but I am going to visit it, as probably will arrive around 15-16.

 

Now I am thinking that, depending on when the rest of the participants arrive, perhaps I would stay in the Omni in order to go museum diving, depart to go to the shooting, then check into the Sheraton, and stay there for the excursions outside DC.

 

Edited to add:

 

Could these trolley tours be of interest?

Edited by sunday
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My commute this month does not go anywhere near the metro (It actually goes right past Udvar Hazy), but every morning I hear about major disruption on the "Blue, Orange, and Silver" lines (Silver being the line that currently ends in Reston). I am *so* glad I don't have to tangle with metro anymore (I used to be a daily rider on the Orange line). A few months back, they did a short-notice full system shutdown - the only time a major American mass transit system had been shut down for something other than a natural disaster - for a full day. Starting this month they are closing whole line segments, and single-tracking through much of the core. Officially, this will continue for many months (Nov? Dec?). Based on the track record, I expect this is the new normal.

 

I'm not sure how I would tour the core anymore... other than finding *some* anchor point near the mall, and doing it all by foot/bus/taxi. Fortunately, out in Reston, Herndon, Ashburn, Centreville, Manassas, it's just the "ordinary" traffic.

 

The caveat on HOV is that some routes are HOT, and you have to have the right Toll Transponder. I have the old transponder, so I can use the HOT lanes, but I can't take them for free if I'm HOV. Other routes are HOV certain times, but just before and just after the HOV hours is much, much worse than during HOV hours (lots of people have to take the HOV routes without enough people, so they cram through right before or right after the restrictions. The HOT and HOV lanes are strictly patrolled by the State Police, and they show no mercy on violations, with very steep fines. Some HOV lanes are HOV2 (I-66 and the Toll Road), and some are HOV-3 (HOT lanes on I-495, and I think still the HOV lanes on I-95 - though the latter might be HOT lanes now). I95 and I66 add HOV lane capacity with the direction of Rush Hour (e.g. I-95 has one set of HOV lanes in the middle which switch directions during the middle of the day and the middle of the night, while I-66 opens the shoulder lane to permit HOV lane restrictions on the inner lane during the rush.

 

TL;DR - be aware of Tolls, restrictions, directions, and hours. If you have 3 occupants (including driver) and are going with and during main rush hours you should be fine.

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Seems we got a local guide ^_^

Well, yeah...

 

As soon as we nail down a detailed itinerary, and I make sure I can get the appropriate time off. I've not been with my current employer to have a great deal of PTO banked, so I probably won't be taking the whole window or participating in all events.

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I know the NOVA area pretty well. I've been back and forth over it a bunch for WWII events and for work in and around Dulles, Manassas and near Leesburg.

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