Road trips can be some of the most memorable vacations. First, however, you need to make sure they’re eventful for the right reasons.
Regardless of whether you’re going to be riding around for a few hours or taking on a multi-day cross-country adventure, the following tips will help you plan an efficient road trip.
Get on the Same Page with Your Passengers
While there are many dangers on the road, the one that is most likely to turn events into a disaster is the people you’re driving with. Even best friends can become adversaries during a long, arduous trip, so it’s crucial that you make sure everyone is on the same page before departing.
It’s important to agree on the purpose of the trip before setting off. For example, is the point to get somewhere quickly, or is this a meandering trip of exploration, where the purpose is to discover new places?
Determine a Budget
Although driving can often be less expensive than flying or train travel, you will have expenses. Therefore, you need to figure out how much everyone is willing or able to spend. For instance, can everyone afford to buy every meal or should you pack sandwiches? Will you be camping or sleeping in hotels. Knowing what everyone can afford and what the expectations are will help you avoid tensions. Additionally, it will allow you to plan specific stops.
Plot out a Driving Route
Driving route planners are a great tool for planning your route. They provide driving directions to your final destination and allow you to add in stops along the way. Additionally, they can help you find amenities like restaurants, gas stations, and hotels. Furthermore, if you go off course, they will reroute you to get you back on track.
Organize Breaks for Exercise
Sitting in a vehicle for lengthy periods can take a toll on the body. Cramps, stiffness, and general malaise can easily be relieved by getting out every few hours and moving your body. Look for stops along the way that offer space to walk around and research some useful stretches ahead of time.
Educate Yourself on Basic Car Maintenance
One of the biggest time sucks when it comes to road trips is waiting on roadside assistance. Therefore, it’s helpful if you know how to solve the most common car issues. For instance, learning how to change a tire is an important skill. So, before your trip, you should practice changing the tire on the car you’ll be using. This will allow you to familiarize yourself with where the spare is located, how to tell the air pressure is good, and what steps you need to take to remove the broken tire and put on the spare.
Use a Cellphone Charging Bank
Although most cars will let you use the vehicle’s power to charge your phone, the most efficient way to keep your cellphone powered up is by using a charging bank. A charging bank will keep your phone charged, so you can make a call or get directions whenever you need.
Prepare for Extreme Weather
The time of year you embark on your road trip will dictate the kinds of weather you can expect to encounter. However, even if the forecast says it’s all sunny roads ahead, you should be prepared for the worst. This means wearing proper footwear, packing appropriate clothing for all weather, and bringing along things like ice scrapers and shovels.
Bring Backup Directions
Most of us rely on our GPS for navigation, but the problem with this is that there’s always the risk that the GPS signal gets disrupted. If this happens, it’s important to have another set of directions on hand. This could be an atlas or printed directions.
An efficient road trip depends on several things. The first is purpose. Are you rushing to get to a final destination, or are you planning on savoring the journey? The second is preparation. Do you know how often and where you’ll be stopping? Are you planning on bringing food with you? Do you have the things you need for emergencies? The third is attitude. Do you and your passengers all have the same outlook regarding the trip? Are you prepared for setbacks?
If you have all these things, you’re in a great position for a wonderful expedition.