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Road Trip Across the Street

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"I think a long walk would do me good."
Rollo before crossing the street to the gate of his mansion in The Navigator

A character gets in a car, or similar vehicle designed/intended for medium-to-long-distance trips, but the trip doesn't even leave the street. Usually a comedy trope, as it's really hard to have a legitimate dramatic reason for it unless a character is Too Important to Walk.

Not to be confused with driving because a poorly planned road makes it more dangerous to go on foot. May be justified if the character is using the vehicle because they have something to transport besides themselves, such as furniture or a whole lot of groceries.

The phone version of this is the Short-Distance Phone Call.


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  • There was an advertisement for the lottery that had a man kiss his wife goodbye from his car as he went "to work." He drove around his circular driveway to pick up his check from the mailbox, then drove back and greeted his wife, who asked, "How was your day?"
  • An ad discouraging drunk driving has Alison Brie leaving a party at Adam Scott's house by getting in a limo (thereby avoiding drunk driving) and being driven to her house... across the street. She even waves to Adam as she walks from her driveway to her front door.
  • One Shaw Delivery Bots ad has a Shaw tech stationed in each neighborhood, so that they are immediately available if a customer requires assistance. One such tech's morning commute involves merely getting in his truck and backing it up across the street, directly into the driveway of a customer.

    Comic Strips 
  • Baby Blues: The kids want to drive to their mailbox, so they can get in the car.
  • Zits has Jeremy gaining driving experience by going back and forth on his driveway enough times in one sitting to deplete an entire tank of gas.
  • MAD: One "Lighter Side Of..." comic showed a guy bragging to his girl about the extreme hike he and his hiking club was going to do, claiming that "It's easy if you're used to it." When he realizes he's missing some supplies, he hops into the car and goes to the convenience store... which is literally just down the street and less than a minute's walk away.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Corpse Bride, the Van Dorts take their private coach to the Everglot mansion, which is located right across the square but they'd clearly rather die than be caught walking to the reception.
  • In Penguins of Madagascar, after mistaking Shanghai for Dublin, the penguins mail themselves to Shanghai, where they think Dave will strike next. The mail truck picks them up and drives off... then drives back and drops the penguins back where they started.
    Skipper: So this is it; Shanghai's famous Little Dublin District.
  • In Toy Story 2, Al lives in an apartment right across the street from his toy store and still drives there. And he gripes all the way about having to drive to work on a Saturday! In the audio commentary, the creators mention that originally they placed his apartment halfway across town, which naturally would have complicated the plot. On the other hand, there were concerns that having him live directly opposite was "too convenient", until they realized they could make a joke out of it.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Leonard Part 6: Leonard gets into his luxurious car to drive to his ex-wife's house, which is revealed to be immediately next door.
  • L.A. Story: Steve Martin gets in his car to go and visit a friend, drives for about the length of three cars, and gets out again.
  • In Not Another Teen Movie some kids announce they are going on a road trip to the party, which is down the block.
  • Steve Martin's character Navin in The Jerk hitchhikes to the end of the block.
    Navin: Thanks for the company. I hope I can repay you someday!
  • The opening to The Gods Must Be Crazy shows a middle-class woman using their car to post a letter in the mailbox just down the street.
  • In The Diamond Arm the protagonist supposedly visiting a bakery on a taxi (in USSR, no less) is vaguely suspected by his nosy house-manager — after all, he got a broken arm, not a leg. But that's just a very clumsy cover-up for meeting with a police operative.
  • In Casino Royale, James Bond invites Solange Dimitrios in her husband's own Aston Martin DB5, in front of the Bahamas hotel, telling her that his place is very close. He takes off, turns at a roundabout and stops 10 seconds later... at the same place. The valet's nonplussed "Good evening, sir, and welcome back" is priceless.
  • Early in Bang Boom Bang, Keek gets into his 1970s Ford Taurus and drives to the video rental store. The video rental store is about 100 meters down the same street as his place.
  • In the 2004 film version of The Phantom of the Opera musical, the Phantom places Christine on the back of a horse and uses it to carry her the length of a short corridor before abandoning it again. This a reference to the original novel, though in that the ride through the cavernous basement levels actually took some time.
  • An extreme example turns up in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. It's not just that the tour party travels down a modest corridor to the Wonkavision room via the Wonkamobile — a curious car-like contraption. It's also that, while supposedly powerful, it moves no faster than walking pace and leaves everyone Covered in Gunge until they pass through the Hsaw Aknow ("Wonka Wash" spelled backwards). Upon disembarking, Mike asks Wonka if they couldn't have just walked and his reply is "If the good Lord had intended us to walk, he wouldn't have invented roller skates."
  • In Dumb and Dumber To, Lloyd and Harry ride a bicycle to visit Harry's parents, whom he hasn't seen in many years. The song "On The Road Again" starts to play, but is cut short when they stop at the second house down the street.
  • In The Big Bus, reporters covering the launch of a nuclear-powered bus are asked to board a minibus, driven around in a circle, then asked to get off.
  • In The Navigator, Buster Keaton gets in his limo and is driven across the street to his girlfriend's house.
  • Spaceballs has President Skroob decide to beam directly from his office to his command center, but the beam gets botched and he had to get beamed back. Rather than try again, he decides to walk... into the command center right next door.
  • The Wrong Box has two brothers who have been feuding and haven't spoken for over forty years; the adult grandson of one delivers a message to the other by first dressing as for a long trip- then walks next door.
  • The Untouchables (1987). Jimmy Malone takes Eliot Ness and the other recently recruited Untouchables to bust one of Al Capone's breweries...which involves them walking out of the police station to the building across the road.

  • A man gets into the taxi. "Drive me, please, for one millimeter". "Are you kidding?" "If I was kidding, I'd request stops along the way".

  • Bill Bryson brings up a few real-life examples in Notes from a Big Country, one example involved some of his neighbours being invited to his house for dinner one day and despite living a short way down the street they drove there. Bryson mentions jokingly asking if they go shopping via light aircraft. He then brought it up again in A Walk in the Woods, in an even more ironic/ridiculous example - a friend who complains about how tough it is to get parking at the gym when she lives only 5-10 minutes away on foot. When he points out that she should just walk, and save herself the parking headache (as well as spending a little less time on the treadmill) she looks at him as if he's crazy, saying that the treadmill has her whole "program" on it, and it can be adjusted for difficulty.
  • Split Heirs: After getting mistaken for Arbol losing his virginity when Arbol's father Gudge walks in on him having sex (thanks to a case of Split at Birth both Wulfrith and Gudge are unaware of), Wulfrith ends up following Gudge on a celebratory tour of the capital's taverns. Wulfrith's internal narration describes Gudge going through a cycle of drinking at a given tavern until he feels like urinating, leaving the tavern to urinate against its wall and hopping on his horse to ride it to the next tavern. It's pointed out that taverns are sometimes right next to each other.

    Live-Action TV 
  • On a The Daily Show segment about gas prices and fuel guzzlers, Rob Corddry gets in a car to travel the distance from one end of a stretch Hummer to the other.
  • A couple of times on Get Smart.
    • Once in The Pilot when Max drives from the concert hall to CONTROL HQ — he gets in his car, does a big U-Turn, and stops in front of the building across the street (getting Rockstar Parking each time); this example made it to the opening credits.
    • In a later episode, where they get in a cab and tell the driver to go to X address: the driver pulls forward about 10 feet and says, "Here we are."
  • In How I Met Your Mother, Ted takes Stella on a two-minute date. This involves them getting in a taxi two separate times in order to go one building down the street.
  • This happens on The Andy Griffith Show when a famous musician returns home to Mayberry. Barney insists on giving him a police escort from the courthouse to his hotel—which is four doors down the block.
  • Combined with Short-Distance Phone Call in a sketch on You're Skitting Me. A schoolgirl calls her mother and begs to be picked up from school. When her mother finally relents, it's revealed that their house is literally across the street from the school.
  • In an episode of the Comedy Central series Strangers with Candy titled "The Blank Stare", the protagonist Jerri Blank has been brainwashed by a cult, but the cult's leader quickly grows tired of her and wishes to return her back to Jerri's school. After the cult leader calls Jerri's teachers Mr. Noblet and Mr. Jellineck and Principal Blackman and tells them to meet them at a rendezvous point, Noblet, Jellineck, and Blackman are seen exiting the school, getting into the school van and driving to the rendezvous point... at the other end of the school parking lot. They then take Jerri, beat her senselessly, throw her in the van and drive her back to the door at the other end of the parking lot.
  • A segment on The Chaser's War On Everything featured Chas Licciardello attempting to get ridiculously small taxi fares. He quickly learned that taxi drivers who've been in queues for some time do not like being told to stop less than a block away. Especially when they're at the airport.
  • A Christmas special of The Vicar of Dibley has Geraldine eat four Christmas lunches, so as not to disappoint any of the people who had invited her to have Christmas lunch with them. After the third lunch, she's forced to take a taxi the short distance to the next house.
  • In A Series of Unfortunate Events, the Squalors take an Absurdly-Long Limousine absurdly short distances - most of which are shorter than the limo itself. In one case, they get into the limo only to immediately get out on the other side. When the Baudelaires try to sneak back into the penthouse, they just walk there.

  • "Pinch Me" by the Barenaked Ladies:
    There's a restaurant down the street
    where hungry people like to eat
    I could walk but I'll just drive
    It's colder than it looks outside!
  • In Mitch Benn's song "I Want", his ridiculous contract riders include a limo in his hotel room, to take him to the toilet, and another one between his dressing room and the stage.

    Web Animation 

    Web Original 
  • Exaggerated in the Screen Rant Pitch Meetings episode on Spider-Man's removal from the Marvel Cinematic Universenote . When the Sony Executive takes the Screenwriter away from the Marvel Studios offices, there's a brief stock footage clip of a plane landing. Immediately afterwards in the Sony offices, the Screenwriter questions why they had to take a plane across the street.

    Western Animation 
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Zuko's servants make him take the palanquin to Mai's house— which is less than twenty yards outside the palace wall— because they believe he's Too Important to Walk. He only relents when he realizes it is a good way to get past the mob of Fangirls.
  • Justified in The Spectacular Spider-Man: Harry insists on picking up Peter, Gwen and Liz for Flash's birthday party... and winds up driving them all half a block down Peter's street. When Peter said Flash lived nearby, Harry hadn't expected it to be THAT close.
  • The Simpsons
    • In "Home Sweet Home-Diddly-Dum-Doodley", Bart, Lisa, and Maggie are taken away from Marge and Homer to live in a foster home. We see them driven away from the Simpson residence and taken... next door to live with the Flanders family.
    • In "Bye Bye, Nerdie", Marge drives Bart and Lisa to school after missing the bus. She goes after the bus, but Otto thinks she wants a race. It ends when Marge stops the bus just a few feet away from the school but still wants her kids to be on the bus. Subverted when Otto forgot to pick up the new kid and drives back to pick her up.
    • "Homer the Great" showed Homer's commute to work; several miles over a heavily-trafficked highway, a gridlocked detour, a huge, full parking lot with the only remaining space being at the very far end next to the chain-link perimeter fence...abutting his own backyard. Annoyed Grunt!
  • In Bobby's World an episode is dedicated to the drama of Bobby's family moving to a new house. When the time for the move actually happens, Bobby promptly states Are We There Yet? to his father, who immediately replies "Yes". Kind of raises the question why no one told this to Bobby until they were already packed up in the car, but eh, just roll with it.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants:
    • In the episode "Pizza Delivery", SpongeBob drives Squidward back to the Krusty Krab after making a delivery right next door. This after having gotten lost for hours trying to make the delivery in the first place.
    • In "Blackjack" after SpongeBob manages to convince Uncle Captain Blue to take him to the house of his evil cousin Blackjack after his parents have gone missing, Blue obliges and gives him a ride to Blackjack's house — which happened to be right next door to Blue's.
  • Occurs in an episode of Dave the Barbarian. The Narrator even lampshades this at one point.
    Narrator: And, so our heroes set forth on a long and perilous journey to find the Master of Evolution... Which was pretty stupid since he lived right next door.
  • In The Angry Beavers, Norbert gets in a boat along with Stump and a crapload of supplies in order to rescue Dagget from the female raccoons. It turns out the island on which their domain is located is... just three feet away from the Beavers' dam.
  • Implied on the Looney Tunes short Show Biz Bugs. Daffy Duck arrives at the theater in a cab and complains about how high the fare is. Said fare was 25 cents for one block.
  • An episode of Cow and Chicken has the family making a huge, tearful deal out of moving to a new house to escape an ant infestation. The new house is literally next door and looks exactly like the old one. The ants follow them, too.
  • An episode of The Get Along Gang had Bingo Beaver find out that he was going to be moving house. He spent the whole episode making the rest of the gang feel sorry for him, so they decide to throw him a big leaving party. Then they all turn up on the big moving day to wave him off, as his family gets in the moving lorry and drive.... about 3 houses down the road. The gang all has a go at him for the theatrics, but to be fair he didn't know (and using a moving lorry to shift furniture three houses down the street is logically a bit of a waste).
  • Hoodwinked! appears to have this when the Wolf hails a taxi in order to catch up to Red after she runs away. The ride only lasts under fifteen seconds.
  • In The Fairly OddParents! episode "Vicky Loses Her Icky", Timmy's parents decided to eat at a restaurant (without him) and drive there (after waiting in the car in the driveway for hours before Dad is hungry). As they leave the house, it's shown the place is, as the trope's name suggests, across the street. Literally.
  • In one Mickey Mouse cartoon, Goofy asks Mickey to take him to the airport early in the morning. After being driven bananas all night by the clock Goofy loaned him, Mickey arrives at his house...and finds out the airport is right next door. Mickey is not amused.
  • Speaking of Mickey, in one House of Mouse short, Pluto is chasing Mickey's Jerkass rival, Mortimer Mouse. Mortimer hails a taxi and tells the driver to take go "to the other side of town and step on it!" The Taxi moves about half a block, stopping at the intersection of "Other Side of Town St." and "Step On It Lane".
  • Subverted in one episode of Chowder: The catering team and Gazpacho make a delivery to Mr. Fugu, who is down the street. However, due to unexpected work on Mr. Fugu's driveway, they're forced to take the long way around, turning it into an actual road trip, much to Chowder's enjoyment...and Mung and Snitzel's dismay due to hauling explosive blast raz fruit.
  • In one episode of Goof Troop, Goofy and Pete have to go into Witness Protection after seeing some mobsters fitting a guy for a cement overcoat. Unfortunately, due to budget cutbacks in the program, their safe house is right across the street from Pete's house.
  • Rocko's Modern Life:
    • In "Sand in Your Navel", Rocko decides to go to the beach on a hot day. On his way there, Rocko tries to find a good place to park his car, but all of the parking lots are full. He eventually finds a parking lot called Big Ed's parking, which is right across the street from his house. He settles on it and walks to the beach.
    • In "Commuted Sentence", Rocko was about to park in a spot in front of the comic book store he worked at, only for it to be taken by none other than his boss, who happened to live next door to the store, forcing Rocko to park further away in a bad neighborhood where his car is stripped. Then his boss has the gall to deride him for being late. Fortunately, karma bites his boss in the butt later on when his regular parking space becomes a tow away zone.
  • Variation in the short "I Was a Teenage Bunnysitter," from the Tiny Toon Adventures episode "The ACME Home Shopping Show"; when Babs leaves to go to the Potter's rabbit hole, she walks down a long road into the distance...which ends at the Potter's hole which is right next to Babs' own.
  • In the Arthur episode "Poor Muffy," Muffy has to live with Francine's family. When Francine offers to walk to school with her, she refuses and instead gets in her limo. It turns out that the school is right down the street from Francine's apartment building, close enough that her mother can shout out that she forgot her lunch.
  • In one episode of Pepper Ann, the Pearsons go on a mother-daughter feminist weekend retreat. They climb into the bus, which drives all the way to a hotel on the next block. Pepper Ann lampshades this when she says she wants to leave, as she can just walk home.
  • Looney Tunes:
    • In 1937's "Sioux Me," an Indian sees a wagon train approaching. He mounts his horse and travels a single gallop to a coin phone so he can call the tribe Chief.
    • In 1957's "Show Biz Bugs", Daffy took a taxi to the theater, even though it was only a block away. He considers the one quarter fare highway robbery.

    Real Life 
  • Liberace once bought a Rolls-Royce which his chauffeur only ever drove once — across the stage where Liberace was performing, in order to deliver the robe he wore for the next song. The car is now in the Liberace Museum in Las Vegas.
  • Railroad transportation:
    • Note that none of the following applies to wheelchair users, who may find the elevator at the station they want to enter or exit is out of service, potentially requiring either they go to another station to get on, or get off at a station near their exit and take a shuttle to the stop they wanted, which might be only one block. This can also happen to wheelchair users when the elevator is down for maintenance.
    • If you were to ride the Chicago 'L' around the central Loop and you entered at one Loop stop, then got off at another Loop stop, chances are this trope might play out. If you enter at State/Lake and get off at Clark/Lake one stop west, you've taken a train for the equivalent of 500 feet. If you got on at LaSalle/ Van Buren and got off at the very next stop, Harold Washington Library-State / Van Buren, you've gone about 600 feet, or the equivalent of two blocks east. That said, the station intervals outside the Loop are much larger, which is especially noticeable on the freeway sections of the Red and Blue Lines.
    • The Blue Line under Dearborn Street doesn't have separate stations but just one long continuous platform, stopping three times along the platform: Jackson Boulevard, Monroe Street, and Washington Street.
  • The London Underground has some central stations at very tight intervals.
    • Try going from Monument to Bank. This means 5 stops and 2 changes by the route plan. However they are actually directly above each other, with an escalator connection, but this was edited off during construction of the Docklands Light Railway in the 90s and some installations STILL don't show this as a result.
    • If the abandoned extension of the Northern City Line from Moorgate to Lothbury had been completed, the front of the train would have arrived in Lothbury before the back had left Moorgate.
    • Brompton Road on the Piccadilly Line was abandoned after the adjacent Knightsbridge station received an entrance that cut into its service catch area in 1934. The same fate befell Down Street, famous for its later use in World War II where Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his Cabinet temporarily set up headquarters until the Cabinet War Rooms were readied.
    • A one stop journey on the Piccadilly Line between Leicester Square and Covent Garden takes only about 20 seconds and measures only 260 metres (280 yds), the shortest distance between two adjacent stations on the Underground network. The stations are so close that if you stand halfway between them on Long Acre, you can see the roundels for both tube stations by simply turning your head around. The proximity means that the standard £4.80 single cash fare for the journey between these two stations equates to £29.81 a mile, which is more expensive per mile than the Venice Simplon Orient Express.
  • This phenomenon is likely to be endemic to municipal rail systems in general. The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, for example, has a light rail system with some ridiculously close stops, especially downtown; walking from the Santa Clara station to the St. James station doesn't take more than 30 seconds plus whatever time you spend waiting for the crosswalk signal to change. The BART stops in San Francisco aren't quite this close, but when it's not rush hour, you can still walk from one to another in less time than it takes to wait for the next train.
  • The Washington Metro averts this in the suburbs, where there can be gaps of several miles between stops (especially on the Orange and Silver Lines), but it's played straight in central D.C. Most specifically, get on the Red Line at Metro Center and go one stop east to Gallery Place / Chinatown to transition from the Orange, Silver or Blue Lines to the Green and Yellow Lines. You've gone all of less than 1,000 feet. There have been proposals to build a pedestrian corridor here so that people can walk this distance and alleviate crowding.
  • The New York City Subway has taken some efforts to avert this. You can find several stations that were closed as a result of adjacent stations' platforms being lengthened to match current train lengths.
    • 18th Street on the IRT Lexington Avenue Line closed in 1948 due to the opening of an entrance to 23rd Street station at 22nd Street, and an entrance to 14th Street-Union Square at 15th Street.
    • 91st Street on the IRT Broadway – Seventh Avenue Line closed in 1959 after platform lengthening at 86th Street and 96th Street.
    • The original subway line's southern terminus of City Hall lost passenger service at the end of 1945. It was on the sharp curve of a balloon loop, couldn't be lengthened for the longer trains, and was very close to the Brooklyn Bridge station (which serves both local and express trains, while City Hall only served local trains). As a result, City Hall closed, and Brooklyn Bridge was renamed Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall. The station is still intact, on the National Register of Historic Places, and the loop itself is used to turn around 6 trains after they discharge at Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall.
    • Worth Street, also on the IRT Lexington Avenue Line, closed in 1962 after platform extensions at Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall.
  • One Man's 90-Foot Uber Ride
  • In the early days of Hollywood, there were actors/actresses who insisted on this because the car service was one of the perks in their contract, and if they didn't insist on using them, the studio would think they could be pushed around.
  • New Jersey Governor Chris Christie reportedly used his official helicopter to fly to the site of his son's baseball game. Once he landed at the high school's football field, he was picked up by a limousine, which drove him a grand total of 100 yards to the baseball field where his son was playing. Somewhat justified in that those 100 yards consisted of an incredibly steep hill that many people have difficulty walking up.
  • In 2003 the London press reported on Jennifer Lopez using six limos to travel 100 yards between hotels.
  • Bertolt Brecht's trips to the theatre were apparently this, due to his love of his car.
  • Played straight with the Detroit People Mover, a light-rail loop around central Downtown. The easiest way to play this trope out is by entering at Millender Center and getting off at Renaissance Center, a ride that's only 500 feet long and is nothing more than simply crossing Jefferson Avenue in less than a minute. Another way to do so is by entering at Bricktown and getting off at Greektown, a ride that's only 600 feet long, but at least removes the need for pedestrians on Beaubien Street to wait for crosswalk signals at Lafayette Street. Yet another way to do so is by entering at Fort / Cass and getting off at Convention Center, a ride that's only 650 feet long and serves just to get into TCF Center without walking inside the building itself.
  • In the 2020-21 NFL season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers became the first team to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium as they faced the Kansas City Chiefs at Super Bowl LV in February 2021. However, due to NFL regulations stating that the "home" team of the Super Bowl alternates between conferences each year, the Bucs were technically the visiting team.
    • It happened again the next year, when the Los Angeles Rams faced the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI. Once again, the Rams were officially the visiting team, despite playing in their own stadium.
  • In airports that use airside buses for boarding, sometimes the ride from the boarding gate to the aircraft (or vice versa) can be extremely short. This is mostly done for safety reasons, in case the aircraft is parked close to the terminal building but not enough for passengers to safely walk across the apron. The same can sometimes apply for shuttles that take travelers between terminals.


Video Example(s):


Al Goes to Work

Al complains about having to drive all the way to his Toy Barn... which is directly across the street from his apartment.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (17 votes)

Example of:

Main / RoadTripAcrossTheStreet

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