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Health Journalism 2007 Logistics Q&A

What airport should I fly into?
How do I get from the airport to the conference hotel?
Do I need to rent a car?
What tourist attractions are in the area?
Can you tell me more about Universal City?
What is the weather like in March?

What airport should I fly into?

You have two main choices for airports in Los Angeles.

The main and larger one, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), is about 15 miles from downtown Los Angeles and 27 miles from Universal City. It offers the convenience of more flights and more direct flights but security lines can be long, especially at peak times.

The Bob Hope Airport in Burbank (BUR) is smaller and usually doesn't offer as many direct flights from a great distance. But it is much easier to get around in and is just five miles from Universal City. The airlines that fly into Burbank include American, Southwest, Jet Blue, United and Alaska Airlines. The airport has direct flights from Dallas, New York, Phoenix, San Francisco and Seattle and connecting flights with most major cities.

How do I get from the airport to the conference hotel?

SuperShuttle is offering discounted service for AHCJ members attending the conference. Download this PDF for details and a coupon. With the discount, SuperShuttles will cost $16 from LAX and $8 from the Burbank airport.

A cab from LAX to Universal City is about $50. Taxis from the Burbank airport run about $16.

AHCJ has set up bulletin boards for attendees who want to share transportation or are looking for roommates.

Do I need to rent a car?

If you want to see the area extensively, it's probably best that you rent a car. Other than a small subway system and bus lines, Los Angeles does not have great public transportation. It likely will make your stay much more enjoyable if you have a car, especially if you want to sightsee or spend time shopping or at the beach.

Parking is available at the hotel for a fee:

Overnight Rates
$14 per car for self parking
$18 per car for valet
Daily Function Rates
$8 per car for self parking
$12 per car for valet

You will, however, be able to get around without a car; there is a subway stop near the hotel that goes mainly to Hollywood and downtown. And there are a selection of eateries at Universal City Walk a short walk from the hotel.

What kind of tourist attractions are in the area?

Los Angeles is filled with lots of things to do.

For those who want to see "Tinsel Town," you can visit Universal Studios across the street from the conference hotel and Warner Bros. Studios (4000 Warner Blvd.) is just a short ride away in Burbank.

You can get to Grauman's Chinese Theatre (6925 Hollywood Blvd.) and the Hollywood Walk of Fame (Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea Ave) in about a 20-minute drive or take the subways' Red Line from the Universal City stop to the Hollywood/Highland stop. You'll exit in front of the Kodak Theatre where the Oscars are held.

Nearby, you can head to Paramount Studios (5555 Melrose Ave.). If you want to try to get tickets to shows such as Jay Leno, Ellen or The Price is Right, you can visit their Web sites for information on how to do it. Typically, you have to show up about three hours ahead of time and wait in line for tickets.

If you want to see sand, head over to Venice Beach (Pacific and Windward Avenues in Venice) by taking the freeways. It's a classic LA spot filled with lots of interesting people watching, restaurants and outdoor vendors.

If you like architecture, don't miss the new Walt Disney Concert Hall (111 S. Grand Ave.), home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the new Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angeles (555 W. Temple Street).

If you have time at night, you can head down to the Santa Monica Pier (Ocean and Colorado Avenues) or the nearby Third Street Promenade outdoor mall that's filled with good shopping, restaurants and movie theaters. There are tons of options, depending on your scene. A good bet is the Standard Hotel (550 South Flower at 6th Street) downtown for dinner and stay for drinks at their hip rooftop bar.

Can you tell me more about Universal City?

Universal City Walk in Universal City has lots to do right there. There are many restaurants, including a City Grill with American bistro food and a good happy hour and B.B. King's Blues Club that has a fun vibe for groups. Karl Strauss Brewery Garden is a good bet for a burger. The Walk has stores such as Abercrombie & Fitch and the Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse and a large movie theater.

You can take the short walk over to City Walk or grab one of the continuously running shuttles that stop in front of the hotel.

What is the weather like in March?

The weather is March is pretty mild. The temperature typically ranges from 50º F to 70º F, although winter rains can extend into the month so bring a light coat and a heavy sweater, just in case.