Car Travel Tips

10 Top Tips for Car Travel

Road trips don’t have to be stressful, in fact road trips are exciting adventures. They’re great bonding experiences for friends and families, but make sure you plan ahead to avoid the stress and annoyances that tend to come hand in hand with road trip experiences.

Preparation

Before setting off on any trip you should make sure your car is in good working order. Check the oil, fill the gas tank, check the tire pressure on all of your cars, check the treads and make sure it hasn’t been a while since your last tune-up. No one wants to think about things going wrong, but it just makes sense to prevent any breakdowns. Plot your route ahead of time, and have more than one option just in case. If you’re heading off on a lengthy trip it only makes sense to know what roads and highways that you will be traveling on. It also provides you with the chance to plan in stops for services, and stops for sites of interest. Street Maps provides you with traffic cam information, weather, tourist stops, coffee shops, gas, food, hotels and rest areas. This allows you to plan for every eventuality.

Keep it Clean

Think of your vehicle as you would your home- because for the length of your road trip that is what it will be. No one wants to sit on crumbs and have to kick empty cans and bottles out of the way to get comfortable in their seat. You are probably going to come up against a lot of flying bugs, and bird droppings, too so make sure to pack window cleaner and paper towels to keep your windshield squeaky clean. Sure you can plot in regular stops but sometimes you reach a point where you want to pass the services without stopping because for once, no one is begging to stop.

Loosen Up

You’re on vacation! Planning is key, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be open to unplanned stops. When you use a site like ours you will see all of the various points of interest along the way that you might want to stop and check out, but if you see something else that has caught your eye don’t be afraid to stop. What are the chances you’ll be back in this exact position again? Just stop and take the selfie.

Back Roads

Not only will taking back roads help you avoid traffic jams, but there is always something exciting to check out, whether it’s small stores, amazing views or interesting local culture. Obviously you can’t take the back roads the entire way unless you have three months to spare, but that doesn’t mean you can’t factor in a slight deviation from that highway you’re rolling on.

Plan B

Always have a plan B, roads can be unpredictable so it’s very likely that you will come across traffic in your travels, or an accident. So make sure that you plan ahead and you have alternative routes to choose from to avoid stress in such situations.

Safety First

Make sure you have an emergency pack in the trunk, it should include a first aid kit, flares, high vis vests, duct tape (the answer to most of life’s problems on the road), flashlight, jumper/booster cables, screwdriver, spare fuses, safety cones, a supply of water and snacks, and blankets. You really never know what can happen on the road so you should prepare for every eventuality. Make sure your spare tire is in good working order, too.

Are We There Yet?

For anyone that’s been on the road for any length of time… you’ll know, it can get boring. Luckily technology is way ahead of it was when I was big on road trips. Check out podcasts that everyone can get in to, you can get through an entire series easily. Whether you’re into true crime or looking for laughs there are plenty to choose from. Thanks to satellite radio you can now access your favorite stations. Have everyone prepare playlists ahead of time so that if there is a difference in musical tastes everyone has their fair share of listening time.

Backseat Driver

Provided you aren’t traveling alone, take turns. You can agree it ahead of time and choose routes for each driver to man. You’ll get there quicker if there’s a fresh set of eyes behind the wheel every once in a while. Besides, everyone needs to have a turn at being a backseat driver.

Hot Spots

Stopping off for a hot coffee, croissant and free Wi-Fi is a total must. Not only for your sanity but to let you check in with family and friends to let them know you are all safe and sound. You’ll probably want to upload some of those selfies onto your social media accounts, too.

 

Destination Isn’t Everything

Most of the fun involving a road trip is the actual road trip itself. It’s great to get away and just hang out with each other while being goofy. Sure, everyone loves stepping out of that car, knowing that you’ve arrived… but when you look back on your trip the best memories will be of those that you in the car. When the car broke down on the side of the road, when your spare tire turned out to be a dud, when you ran out of oil, when you got lost. Or… When someone was overly dramatic about their need for the bathroom, when you cleared up on I Spy, when someone’s play list was so awful you will never let them forget about the torture they put you through. Those are the things that will stick in your mind after a long trip on the road.

I know which set of when’s I’d prefer to look back on, how about you?