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Relocating

Are you considering relocating your federal career - either by your choice or by Uncle Sam? There are practical issues and concerns to think about when deciding whether or not to relocate. Others have done it while still others have not. This forum will allow for all to offer their insight, post their questions, and help each other out.

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birdonamission  
#1 Posted : Thursday, June 07, 2018 9:49:36 AM(UTC)

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Does anyone do the Delaware to D.C. commute? Not from the Wilmington/northern Delaware area, but from the central part of the state, like Dover, Magnolia, etc.

If so, do you drive all the way in to D.C. (and why??)?

I noticed there are a couple of Maryland Commuter Bus routes (#240 and #250) from the Kent Narrows Park-and-Ride on the Eastern Shore that go directly into downtown Washington.

Taking the Maryland Commuter Bus would seem the best option so you can relax all the way on the 1-1/4 hour ride (according to the MTA schedule PDFs) from Kent Narrows to D.C., especially on the reverse trip after a full day at work.

The Dover-to-Kent Narrows trip (and vice versa) each morning and evening is about an hour (according to Google Maps), so together, it's about a 2-1/4 hours each way.

Here's the commuter bus cost (which should be covered by the Transit Benefit):

One Way – Full Fare $6.00
One Way – Senior/Disability Fare $5.00
Ten Trip – Full Fare $60.00
Ten Trip – Senior/Disability $50.00
Monthly Pass Full Fare $204.00
Monthly Pass – Senior/Disability $170.00

This is a "what-if" thing because more and more I'm liking the idea of being out of this congested & crazy area called Washington, D.C. (lol!) and moving early to where we might retire anyway. Besides, I telework 3 days a week and off every other Friday, so the commuter bus scenario above is very doable.

Anyone out there? Thanks...

Edited by user Thursday, June 07, 2018 9:58:18 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Endless Summer  
#2 Posted : Thursday, June 07, 2018 12:39:40 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: birdonamission Go to Quoted Post
Does anyone do the Delaware to D.C. commute? Not from the Wilmington/northern Delaware area, but from the central part of the state, like Dover, Magnolia, etc.

If so, do you drive all the way in to D.C. (and why??)?

I noticed there are a couple of Maryland Commuter Bus routes (#240 and #250) from the Kent Narrows Park-and-Ride on the Eastern Shore that go directly into downtown Washington.

Taking the Maryland Commuter Bus would seem the best option so you can relax all the way on the 1-1/4 hour ride (according to the MTA schedule PDFs) from Kent Narrows to D.C., especially on the reverse trip after a full day at work.

The Dover-to-Kent Narrows trip (and vice versa) each morning and evening is about an hour (according to Google Maps), so together, it's about a 2-1/4 hours each way.

Here's the commuter bus cost (which should be covered by the Transit Benefit):

One Way – Full Fare $6.00
One Way – Senior/Disability Fare $5.00
Ten Trip – Full Fare $60.00
Ten Trip – Senior/Disability $50.00
Monthly Pass Full Fare $204.00
Monthly Pass – Senior/Disability $170.00

This is a "what-if" thing because more and more I'm liking the idea of being out of this congested & crazy area called Washington, D.C. (lol!) and moving early to where we might retire anyway. Besides, I telework 3 days a week and off every other Friday, so the commuter bus scenario above is very doable.

Anyone out there? Thanks...


I live in the city but work with a lot of people who use the commuter buses. I'd say that it's worth considering, depending on your pain tolerance.

If I was within one year of retiring, and teleworked three days per week, I'd be more inclined to do it.

I don't know if you can look up the historical on-time performance of the buses but that would be helpful. I know co-workers whose one hour bus ride may turn into a three hour ride. I'd just keep myself open to the idea that there may be up to 6 times a year that I just need to grab a hotel in the area rather than waste six hours commuting.

If you're ok with that, go for it.
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birdonamission on 6/7/2018(UTC)
birdonamission  
#3 Posted : Thursday, June 07, 2018 4:17:52 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Endless Summer Go to Quoted Post
I live in the city but work with a lot of people who use the commuter buses. I'd say that it's worth considering, depending on your pain tolerance.

If I was within one year of retiring, and teleworked three days per week, I'd be more inclined to do it.

I don't know if you can look up the historical on-time performance of the buses but that would be helpful. I know co-workers whose one hour bus ride may turn into a three hour ride. I'd just keep myself open to the idea that there may be up to 6 times a year that I just need to grab a hotel in the area rather than waste six hours commuting.

If you're ok with that, go for it.


Thank you! Great point about the advertised arrival times vs. what happens sometimes in the real world (especially in the wintertime).

And, right — be prepared to stay in a hotel, if ever needed.

King_Fed  
#4 Posted : Saturday, June 09, 2018 6:45:29 AM(UTC)
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I've personally known and worked closely with four people who worked far away (other side of Baltimore, W. VA, Frederick, and other side of Annapolis... over the bridge). Some of my mental notes:

1. Yes, be prepared to grab a hotel or work out something with a co-worker where you can sleep in a spare room.

2. Be prepared to be late. If you have meetings within an hour of your official arrival, you should move the meeting or attempt to come in earlier.

3. Figure out what happens if your agency, supv, etc. decides to reduce telwork to 1 day a pay period. This happened to one person, out of the blue.

4. The family/friends strain can be understated. Your spouse will need to be on-board. So much travel can make you tired.

5. You can be very productive during your travel. With a hot spot, laptop, and phone... you can get things done. Or even taking records home, but working on them during your commute.

6. In general, the people I've known seemed very happy with their decision. I could never do it, but they thought it was worth it.

Edited by user Saturday, June 09, 2018 6:49:56 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

thanks 1 user thanked King_Fed for this useful post.
birdonamission on 6/9/2018(UTC)
birdonamission  
#5 Posted : Saturday, June 09, 2018 6:46:54 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: King_Fed Go to Quoted Post
I've personally known and worked closely with four people who worked far away (other side of Baltimore, W. VA, Frederick, and other side of Annapolis... over the bridge). Some of my mental notes:

1. Yes, be prepared to grab a hotel or work out something with a co-worker where you can sleep in a spare room.

2. Be prepared to be late. If you have meetings within an hour of your official arrival, you should move the meeting or attempt to come in earlier.

3. Figure out what happens if your agency, supv, etc. decides to reduce telwork to 1 day a pay period. This happened to one person, out of the blue.

4. The family/friends strain can be understated. Your spouse will need to be on-board. So much travel can make you tired.

5. You can be very productive during your travel. With a hot spot, laptop, and phone... you can get things done. Or even taking records home, but working on them during your commute.

6. In general, the people I've known seemed very happy with their decision. I could never do it, but they thought it was worth it.


Excellent feedback right there. Thanks!

Fortunately, my agency is very telework-friendly, probably more so than most. It's ingrained as part of the culture and practice because of the nature of the work (some even work off-site most days and just have to come in to work twice during the pay period to the agency office in their region, or if approved, telework full time). So, #3 is low-risk, I will say. All of what you said, though, is really good advice / information.

Edited by user Saturday, June 09, 2018 6:52:10 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

birdonamission  
#6 Posted : Sunday, January 13, 2019 4:19:46 PM(UTC)

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Bumping this -- sorry -- because I have the same question except we're now shifting our area of interest as to where we're looking to move in Delaware from the Dover area to further south in the Lewes-Rehoboth-Milton-Millsboro area. I think it's called "Slower Lower" Delaware (Sussex County, not too far from Ocean City, MD). :)

Another thing that could change is my office days going from 3 times a pay period to only 2 times (now that I've been selected for a promotion in another office in the same agency whose team members mostly telework).

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Forgot to mention that yet another thing that could change is that due to the job announcement for the position I'm promoting into saying "Location Negotiable After Selection, United States," I may be able to work out of the agency's Baltimore office, which is obviously closer to Delaware. So if anyone does the Kent Island (Eastern Shore) to Baltimore trip by commuter bus, I would love to hear about experiences and words of wisdom. Thanks!

Edited by user Sunday, January 13, 2019 5:27:49 PM(UTC)  | Reason: see post

Porgy  
#7 Posted : Sunday, January 13, 2019 6:18:17 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: birdonamission Go to Quoted Post
Bumping this -- sorry -- because I have the same question except we're now shifting our area of interest as to where we're looking to move in Delaware from the Dover area to further south in the Lewes-Rehoboth-Milton-Millsboro area. I think it's called "Slower Lower" Delaware (Sussex County, not too far from Ocean City, MD). :)

Another thing that could change is my office days going from 3 times a pay period to only 2 times (now that I've been selected for a promotion in another office in the same agency whose team members mostly telework).

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Forgot to mention that yet another thing that could change is that due to the job announcement for the position I'm promoting into saying "Location Negotiable After Selection, United States," I may be able to work out of the agency's Baltimore office, which is obviously closer to Delaware. So if anyone does the Kent Island (Eastern Shore) to Baltimore trip by commuter bus, I would love to hear about experiences and words of wisdom. Thanks!


As a person who used to live in DE: Anything south of you is “slower lower”. Wilmington? Dover is slower lower. Dover? Georgetown is slower lower.

You need to be mindful of the beach traffic in the summer. Everyone wants to go to Southern DE on Thursday and Friday night from June - September and that will mess your day up.
birdonamission  
#8 Posted : Sunday, January 13, 2019 6:49:35 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Porgy Go to Quoted Post
As a person who used to live in DE: Anything south of you is “slower lower”. Wilmington? Dover is slower lower. Dover? Georgetown is slower lower.

You need to be mindful of the beach traffic in the summer. Everyone wants to go to Southern DE on Thursday and Friday night from June - September and that will mess your day up.


Thanks for responding. I think I'll be able to negotiate my office days to earlier in the week and not neither Thursday nor Friday. I just need to report to the office a minimum of twice per pay period (per federal teleworking rules), but I can work out which days with my supervisor.

Do you have a recommendation for which days are better when it comes to trying not be sucked up by the traffic maelstrom during the summer beach season?
Porgy  
#9 Posted : Monday, January 14, 2019 11:16:38 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: birdonamission Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Porgy Go to Quoted Post
As a person who used to live in DE: Anything south of you is “slower lower”. Wilmington? Dover is slower lower. Dover? Georgetown is slower lower.

You need to be mindful of the beach traffic in the summer. Everyone wants to go to Southern DE on Thursday and Friday night from June - September and that will mess your day up.


Thanks for responding. I think I'll be able to negotiate my office days to earlier in the week and not neither Thursday nor Friday. I just need to report to the office a minimum of twice per pay period (per federal teleworking rules), but I can work out which days with my supervisor.

Do you have a recommendation for which days are better when it comes to trying not be sucked up by the traffic maelstrom during the summer beach season?


Tuesday-Thursday is best. Monday is OK-ish.

Also beware of race weekend (which happens in Dover twice a year).
birdonamission  
#10 Posted : Monday, January 14, 2019 12:04:49 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Porgy Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: birdonamission Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Porgy Go to Quoted Post
As a person who used to live in DE: Anything south of you is “slower lower”. Wilmington? Dover is slower lower. Dover? Georgetown is slower lower.

You need to be mindful of the beach traffic in the summer. Everyone wants to go to Southern DE on Thursday and Friday night from June - September and that will mess your day up.


Thanks for responding. I think I'll be able to negotiate my office days to earlier in the week and not neither Thursday nor Friday. I just need to report to the office a minimum of twice per pay period (per federal teleworking rules), but I can work out which days with my supervisor.

Do you have a recommendation for which days are better when it comes to trying not be sucked up by the traffic maelstrom during the summer beach season?


Tuesday-Thursday is best. Monday is OK-ish.

Also beware of race weekend (which happens in Dover twice a year).


OK, great. Thank you kindly!

FedCivServ  
#11 Posted : Monday, January 14, 2019 1:58:43 PM(UTC)

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i thought the ocean city area was more like 3 hours from DC? Or close to it? Are you willing to be on the road that much any days of the week? I wouldn't be. Of course i moved away from DC 4 years ago and now if it takes me 11 min to go 10 mi i get cranky. :) Why don't you try staying a few days in the area you want to live in, and commute in on the days you think you'd be commuting. that way you can see exactly how long it will take. Of course if you do it now vice in July it will likely be different, but it may give you at least an idea before you leap...
birdonamission  
#12 Posted : Monday, January 14, 2019 3:44:03 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: FedCivServ Go to Quoted Post
i thought the ocean city area was more like 3 hours from DC? Or close to it? Are you willing to be on the road that much any days of the week? I wouldn't be. Of course i moved away from DC 4 years ago and now if it takes me 11 min to go 10 mi i get cranky. :) Why don't you try staying a few days in the area you want to live in, and commute in on the days you think you'd be commuting. that way you can see exactly how long it will take. Of course if you do it now vice in July it will likely be different, but it may give you at least an idea before you leap...


Let’s just say we buy a house in Milton, DE...

1. Drive POV to the Kent Narrows P&R lot on Kent Island (MD): ~60 mi / 1 hr 13 min

2. Ride MD Commuter Bus #240 from Kent Narrows P&R lot to D.C. near my building: ~46 mi / 1 hr 15 min

So, about 2.5 hours each way, according to Google and the Commuter Bus schedule, anyway.

This is doable for me since we’ll be where we want to be and it’ll only be once a week. And the bus portion of the trip should be rather relaxing, not being behind the wheel.

Also, it’s possible to be a reduced-hours day (perhaps a 6- or 7-hour tour of duty since the maxiflex flexible schedule is available).
birdonamission  
#13 Posted : Monday, January 14, 2019 4:20:36 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: FedCivServ Go to Quoted Post
Why don't you try staying a few days in the area you want to live in, and commute in on the days you think you'd be commuting. that way you can see exactly how long it will take. Of course if you do it now vice in July it will likely be different, but it may give you at least an idea before you leap...


Great idea... Will have to plan on doing that. Thanks.

Selvin  
#14 Posted : Wednesday, January 16, 2019 1:55:50 AM(UTC)
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Hi all I work in new Carrolton I telework 3 days out of 4 days all Friday’s off I drive every Wednesday not bad listening radio and coffee helps me.
birdonamission  
#15 Posted : Wednesday, January 16, 2019 10:05:45 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Selvin Go to Quoted Post
Hi all I work in new Carrolton I telework 3 days out of 4 days all Friday’s off I drive every Wednesday not bad listening radio and coffee helps me.


Hi - thanks for sharing! Sounds great. My schedule will not be too different from yours. Probably won’t opt for the 4/10 schedule, though. More than a couple of 10 hour days would wear me out...lol. Every Friday off sounds enticing, though.

If you don’t mind, what part of DE are you commuting to New Carrollton from?

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