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Old 07-07-2015, 07:47 PM   #1
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Liberty Harbor Marina, NJ/New York - Keeps Deposit?

I am looking to book a couple of weeks next summer. I was just about to make the reservation and then read the fine print. They keep 50% of any deposit if you cancel. Now, I am glad they tell you, but that seems a little steep. I read online that some people try to cancel 6+ weeks in advance and they kept it. I read someone else tried to make an adjustment for a few days less than originally reserved - they called, the person who called said they would refund for the adjustment since they would be staying, then when they got there they would not refund anything.

So, needless to say, I am a little bit nervous. The location is perfect, but I am fearful of loosing around $600 if something changes and I can't make it. Anyone have any advice? I am thinking about only staying 5-7 days now. Then if I can't make it, I would only be out $200-280. Not great, but better.

Can anyone make recommendations to places within a 5 hour radius of New York? Maybe 10 hours? I have two kids (14 & 9) and have never been to the North East of the US. My original plan was to stay in New York for 14 days and then go to Washington DC for 14 days. We are still planning on staying in DC (Cherry Hill). My wife suggested Boston.
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Old 07-08-2015, 08:19 AM   #2
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Sounds like you want a big city, so that basically only leaves Boston or Philadelphia; maybe Hartford. We tend to like nature over cities, so I can't be much more help. We have stayed at Liberty Harbor when we had to be near NYC. It is just a big parking lot, but the people were nice the two times we were there. Personally near NYC I would much rather camp at Battle Row in Old Beth Page on Long Island. But it is a 45 minute drive to the city. We go there to visit mostly Long Island. The downside of Long Island is it means crossing the George Washington Bridge or riding a slow ferry.
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:32 AM   #3
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How about the "Land of Pleasant Living"?

I'd stay somewhere in the Chesapeake area. There are many places on the Bay that are beautiful and close enough for road trips to either DC or New York. New Jersey tends to be really, really crowded. I grew up in DE, so I have experience traveling and summering in Delaware, New Jersey, and Maryland.

My recommendation is Maryland (they call the Chesapeake Bay area "the land of pleasant living" BTW). Elkton is convenient to I-95 (the main travel corridor for that entire area). Elk Neck State park is lovely and right by the water although you only have water and power and they have a 2 week max stay. Woodlands is a private park in the area which has full hookups and reasonable prices. Though it is nearly all seasonals, they do have some lovely spots reserved for vacationers. Great hiking there, as Woodlands buts up right against Elk Neck State Park. We camped at Woodlands for several months in the fall and found it to be a lovely place. We saw many deer in the woods right behind our site. It is a very secure location, with key card access to the park. They have a small pond for fishing, a playground, and a swimming pool.

Elkton is a small town, so don't expect much. There is a fantastic breakfast and hot dog place there called JoJo's Super Dogs. But right down the road is North East, MD, which is a quaint, historic town with two award winning restaurants (can you tell I like to eat?). The first is Steak and Main which has very, very, very good steak. The second, and my favorite, is Woody's where you will be able to indulge all summer in fresh blue crab! Their Maryland crab soup is THE best (and I'll fight over it), they have wonderful, huge crabcakes, and you can get fresh steamed crabs to pick. There are also some good places in Delaware (Cape Henlopen, Lums Pond) and further inland in Maryland (State Parks). I would stay away from the beach towns during the summer, since prices are high, and, as my father used to say, the crowds are like flies on, well, poo.

Places at the beach (including the RV parks) get so much business they can afford to have policies like that, and they do have policies like that. Unfortunately we live in a time where many (but not all) businesses care little about customer service. If their business is always booming, they don't see the point in keeping prospective customers happy. They know that even though you were turned off by that policy, they'll be plenty more at the door, since the beach towns in the mid Atlantic (especially in New Jersey, less crowded are the beach towns on the DE shore) are so darn crowded all summer.

Enjoy your trip planning!

Carolyn (the DW in RCG)
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Old 07-08-2015, 11:07 AM   #4
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Correction: Elk Neck Park does have full hookups

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Old 07-08-2015, 11:42 AM   #5
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Go for it for a week. Do a couple of days in Philadelphia on the way to DC. The one thing Liberty Park has is public transportation to NYC. You do not want to try to drive there.
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Old 07-08-2015, 11:56 AM   #6
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I feel your concern about the reservation issue. I use Liberty Harbor every year for a week to visit family and attend functions.

I don't reserve until the day before because of just what you've experianced. I've never had a problem getting a space there booking at the last minute.

I didn't see where you were coming from, but I'd like to add, I come into the city at night after midnite.

Thats seems to be the easiest time to make that drive and negotiate the traffic.

Like stated above, I've found the folks for the most part to be very friendly, with just a little Jersey attitude.

The Campground as has been mentioned is really just a parking lot for those who are looking for the NJ/NY experience.

If you are expecting to stay a week, be prepared for the need to move to the dump area to unload waste. There are no sewer drains at the sites. So you having more that one person will want to put the campground showers to good use.

Security is very good at this camp ground and you're right next to the Holland tunnel, the Lady, and a ferry service to NY.

Just my opinion, Liberty Harbor would be my first pick for the location, and adventures in that area.

Happy trails
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Old 07-08-2015, 12:22 PM   #7
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Liberty Harbor sucks as far as we are concerned. Stayed there just before Irene hit in 2011. We asked what would happen if the hurricane hit and were told that if a mandatory evacuation order was in place we would get a refund. We watched the hurricane approach and decided on our own that we should scram. Within 12 hours of our action the 'experts' agreed with us and ordered mandatory evacuation. Do you think we got a refund for our unused days. Hell no. The 'Jersey attitude' was very prevalent.


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Old 07-08-2015, 02:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dtwallace View Post
I feel your concern about the reservation issue. I use Liberty Harbor every year for a week to visit family and attend functions.

I don't reserve until the day before because of just what you've experianced. I've never had a problem getting a space there booking at the last minute.

I didn't see where you were coming from, but I'd like to add, I come into the city at night after midnite.

Thats seems to be the easiest time to make that drive and negotiate the traffic.

Like stated above, I've found the folks for the most part to be very friendly, with just a little Jersey attitude.

The Campground as has been mentioned is really just a parking lot for those who are looking for the NJ/NY experience.

If you are expecting to stay a week, be prepared for the need to move to the dump area to unload waste. There are no sewer drains at the sites. So you having more that one person will want to put the campground showers to good use.

Security is very good at this camp ground and you're right next to the Holland tunnel, the Lady, and a ferry service to NY.

Just my opinion, Liberty Harbor would be my first pick for the location, and adventures in that area.

Happy trails
Thanks. I am coming from Arizona, so seeing the city is why we are looking at Liberty Harbor. We also want to see some of the historical sites within a few hundred miles. I am thinking about heading to Boston and possibly to Portland ME, then back down to around New Haven and then to Washington DC. I figure 3 days in Boston and 3 days in or around Portland. Then overnight in New Haven and 14 days in DC. I am going to be heading through Kansas to see my dad and then along the I70, and on the way home down through Nashville and onto the I40. 10 days to and 10 days from. Generally 48 days off for my sabbatical from work next summer.
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Old 07-08-2015, 02:11 PM   #9
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Liberty Harbor sucks as far as we are concerned. Stayed there just before Irene hit in 2011. We asked what would happen if the hurricane hit and were told that if a mandatory evacuation order was in place we would get a refund. We watched the hurricane approach and decided on our own that we should scram. Within 12 hours of our action the 'experts' agreed with us and ordered mandatory evacuation. Do you think we got a refund for our unused days. Hell no. The 'Jersey attitude' was very prevalent.


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That's what is putting me off. I was originally planning on staying there for 14 days, but now I am looking at only staying max 7 days. If they are that full all the time, there should be no reason to keep the full deposit for people. They are out zero money if they are that highly sought after and the word of mouth on the no refund deposit can't help anything. I am surprised credit card companies wouldn't fight that. I would be surprised if the small note on their website would be strong enough for a credit card company to not fight for it's customer.
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Old 07-08-2015, 02:31 PM   #10
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I live in NJ, 25 miles north of Liberty Harbor. The drive to and from LH means about 2 miles of city driving in Jersey City. The place is, as stated above, a parking lot and not a very nice one at that. There are other negatives as well BUT if you want to spend time in NYC and not in NYC traffic it is, geographically the very best option. Waking distance to trains and water taxis that drop you right in Manhattan. If your plan is to get up in the morning, have breakfast and head into NYC for a day of touring and sight seeing and dining and shows there is no better alternative. It is not worth staying 30, 40, 50 or more miles away and spending countless hours in a car commuting. The place is an embarrassment - but you can not beat the location.


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Old 07-08-2015, 02:38 PM   #11
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In April of this year we were in both cherry hill park (for DC) and liberty harbor. liberty is really just a parking lot. we did find the folks there to be both nice and helpful. its kinda cool to look out your front window and see lady liberty and be able to see the radio tower of the new world trade center. if you time the ferry right you can be in your rv and 15 minutes later you're on wall street! Again we loved being that close to the city and plan on going back in April of 2016. if you have any questions pm me.
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Old 07-08-2015, 02:50 PM   #12
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If you are at all a history buff also stop in NJ and do a day in Philadelphia. You can do Independence Hall and Ben Franklin in a day. It is well worth it. DC has stuff. Boston and Philadelphia have History!

If you are going to Portland run up to LL Bean in the evening. They really are open 7x24. ;-)
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Old 07-09-2015, 08:57 AM   #13
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There is a KOA in Newburgh that has shuttles to the city... also not too far from the train into the city.
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Old 07-09-2015, 06:50 PM   #14
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If you are bringing a toad then look into Malhon Dickson Nature Preserve in New Jersey. It is an hours drive from the city out off I-80 in Morris County. It is a County Park and it has a two week maximum stay rule. It has Water and Electric with a dump station. From there you can drive 20 minutes to a train station and take the Path train into Penn station. I found the trains to be excellent. You might need an extra length of hose for water depending on the site. The require a 1 day deposit of $20. If you stay 14 days it will cost you $280. There is no way I would drive into the city. Parking starts at $50 a day if you can find it and the GW bridge is over $11 for cars. Look it up on RVreviews.com It might work for you.
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