Sunday, March 26, 2017

Logistics for Dallas

The Women's Final Four will be played at 6:30 and 9pm CST on Friday, March 31st and at 5pm Sunday April 2nd, at American Airlines Center in Dallas TX. Relevant links:

There are many nonstop flights to the Dallas area from both SJC and SFO. Dallas is served by two airports: Love field (code DAL) is closer to town. The gigantic hub Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) is the other choice, twice as far from town. Southwest and Virgin America fly only to DAL. American and United fly to DFW.

As a major city, Dallas has many hotels. Rates for that weekend run from $150/night upward.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Lexington Meetup Friday afternoon

East-coast fan Stephen Perlman suggests a fan meetup on Friday March 24th, at 4pm (the first game is at 7pm local time, and Stanford plays in the second game).

Wear your cardinal clothes and drop in at the Bigg Blue Martini in the Hilton Lexington Downtown. This is a popular drinking establishment a very short distance from Rupp Arena -- it is visible in the map in the previous post.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Logistics for the Lexington Regional

This post updated 3/14 with actual game times, more flight info, and removal of some unrealistic advice.

Should Stanford advance from the first two rounds, it will play in the Lexington regional. These games will be held in Rupp Arena on the grounds of the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky (map).

The games will be on Friday March 24th at 7pm and 9:30pm. Lexington's Blue Grass Airport (code LEX) is served by American and United. (Delta also flies there, but only from Atlanta, so any Delta flight originating in SFO has at least three legs and many hours.)

Alternatives are Louisville airport (code SDF) and Cincinnati (code CVG). Both these cities' airports are about an hour and a half drive from Lexington. Southwest airlines serves Louisville, so if you want to fly SWA, make that your destination. SWA has a 6:50am departure from SFO, arriving SDF at 3:50pm. There is theoretically time to drive from Louisville and make the 7pm game, but on the other hand, this would be a Friday evening.

There are American flights to LEX out of both SFO and SJC at 6:14am that arrive in comfortable time to make the 7pm game. No later departure would be assured of making the start of the first game. For a slightly more civilized departure time you could take an 8am flight from SFO on the Thursday.

Remember that the FBC Travel page has many useful links for scheduling flights.

Logistics for the first round

Stanford plays in Bramlage Coliseum on the campus of Kansas State University (map) on Saturday, March 18th at 12:30pm local (Central) time.

Manhattan, KS is a two-plus hour drive from the nearest major airport, Kansas City (code MCI). In no case is it feasible to fly from SFO on the Saturday and reach Manhattan in time for the game. You must fly on Friday.

Update: Manhattan's local airport (code MHK) is served by American Eagle, a subsidiary of American. It is possible to book flights on American from SFO, changing in DFW, direct to MHK. The times are not any more convenient but the long drive from the bigger city is avoided. The rest of this post is based on flying into KC.

There is a single nonstop flight from SFO, UA5454, which uses quite a small plane, so is probably sold out by now. Other flights by United and American involve one change. If you catch an early (5am-7am) departure, you can arrive in KC early enough to make the drive to Manhattan on Friday evening. Be sure to notify your chosen hotel of late arrival.

What we have opted to do is to fly into KC and stay Friday night at the airport Marriott. On Saturday morning we'll make the drive to Manhattan early and stay in a hotel there for three nights.

The two-plus hour drive back to KC must affect your choice of return flights as well. Fortunately KC is a relatively compact airport. The rental car agencies are on the airport grounds, not a long bus ride away. But you'll want to depart Manhattan at least four hours before your scheduled departure. However, the weather forecast is for partly cloudy -- we should not have bad weather to contend with at either end of the weekend.

Remember that the FBC Travel page has many useful links for scheduling flights.