Driving to Chicago Advice
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    Driving to Chicago Advice

    I'm driving to Chicago from central Iowa later today. Does anyone have any advice if I should take I-88 or I-80 across Illinois? I'm heading downtown so there isn't a big distance difference, I-88 is obviously a little shorter. Online they show construction on I-88, anyone know what that's like right now? Is there much difference in terms of traffic, how much in tolls would i expect on I-88, and if there is some bad weather?


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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by HGPuck View Post
    I'm driving to Chicago from central Iowa later today. Does anyone have any advice if I should take I-88 or I-80 across Illinois? I'm heading downtown so there isn't a big distance difference, I-88 is obviously a little shorter. Online they show construction on I-88, anyone know what that's like right now? Is there much difference in terms of traffic, how much in tolls would i expect on I-88, and if there is some bad weather?
    I-88 will have less trucks than I-80 until you reach the city as well as less traffic in general than I-80. my suggestion, take 88



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    Depends on where your going in Chicago, but I-88 is hard to beat



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by HGPuck View Post
    I'm driving to Chicago from central Iowa later today. Does anyone have any advice if I should take I-88 or I-80 across Illinois? I'm heading downtown so there isn't a big distance difference, I-88 is obviously a little shorter. Online they show construction on I-88, anyone know what that's like right now? Is there much difference in terms of traffic, how much in tolls would i expect on I-88, and if there is some bad weather?
    Tolls will be around $6 or so...used to be a lot cheaper! I would just stay on I80 and head up I55 when you reach that point.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by cyfanatic View Post
    Tolls will be around $6 or so...used to be a lot cheaper! I would just stay on I80 and head up I55 when you reach that point.
    Yeah, if you want to avoid the tollways at all costs, take I-80 to I-55 north, which takes you right into the city.


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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    I-88 is faster, but prepare to be gouged, especially if you don't have I-Pass - you literally pay twice as much without it.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    I'm from north of the city and I always took 80 to 88. Seems to be a lot less traffic then taking 80 the entire way.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    We went to Chicago in July of last year, and since they were doing construction on the bridge going over the MS River, we ended up going out of our way to get around it. Might have been easier at that point to go on 80. That was July, though, so I don't know what it's like now. We've always gone 88 before, but the tolls do add up.


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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    I take I-88 everytime. I hope you are driving with someone, the drive from Iowa to Chicago is brutally boring if you're going by yourself.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by gocubs2118 View Post
    I take I-88 everytime. I hope you are driving with someone, the drive from Iowa to Chicago is brutally boring if you're going by yourself.
    Tell me about it.. I used to drive from the SW burbs to Ames every home football game last fall. On my drive back to Chicago on Sunday, I always thought to myself, "this drive sucks... was it really worth it?" And then I thought, "yes, it was bc I got to tailgate and spend the day at JT stadium."


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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    From Cedar Rapids I always take I88 as well...but I take Highway 30 to get to it through Clinton and Morrison, IL. That saves a lot of time...but if I were going to Chicago from Iowa City...I would probably go I80 to I55 if I were going into the heart of the city.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    My navi says I-88E exit 4b and roughly 4 1/2 hours from Des Moines



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    That reminds me - when you get to Davenport, take I-280 around as they're still working on the I-80 bridge (although it's open). It's virtually the same distance if you decide to go I-80, and only a 2-3 mile backtrack to the North (I-80 West) if you take I-88.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    if you're going to the city, on a friday afternoon i would definitely take I-80 to joliet and then take I-55 north into the city which puts you right by soldier field. there is much less traffic on 55N than on 88/290 into the city since 55N is a reverse commute at night(wife drives it every day). If you're going to the suburbs anywhere west or north of the city, i would stick with I-88. an added plus is that I-80 & I-55 have no tolls so you don't have to stop for them.



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    Re: Driving to Chicago Advice

    If your coming across on Hwy 30 and are going to take 88 make sure to get on 88 BEFORE Rock Falls. (There are 3 exits for Rock Falls from 88). Driving through Rock Falls cost you minimum of 10 minutes AND increase your chances of getting carjacked.



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