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10 Tips for the Best Road Trip Ever

Take a Truly Awesome Road-Trip!

Road trips are a great way to experience new places and bond with family and friends. Sure, we’ve all heard our fair share of road trips gone wrong, but with some simple planning road trip pitfalls are easy to avoid. Follow these 10 tips for the best road trip ever.

 

1. Have Your Car Checked Out by Your Mechanic

– 200 miles from home isn’t when you want to find out your car needs new back brakes, so before you leave ask a mechanic to give your car a once over and fix any problems. Also make sure you have a working spare. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

 

2. Have A Loose Plan

– Sometimes hitting the open road with no plans can be a bit overwhelming, so before you leave, pick a couple of destinations you know you want to hit. This will give a basic framework with plenty of wiggle room for unexpected fun that comes up.

 

3. Stick to a Budget

– Before you go, come up with a rough estimate for cost of gas, food, accommodations, and entertainment, and make sure what you can afford and what you have planned is reasonable. Have an estimate for how much you spend a day and stick to it as much as possible. Saving receipts can help you keep track. That way, when you get back your awesome trip won’t be soured by the fact you spent $2,000 more than you planned.

 

4. Divide and Conquer

– Road trips can be a lot of work, but not if everyone has a part. This includes splitting driving among able bodied. Even kids can help by doing things like reading maps and giving directions or doing equipment checks before heading out to the next destination. This not only keeps one person from too much stress but also makes everyone feel important.

 

5. Get Technical

– Even if you want to take a break from technology, a cell phone (and charger) is a safety must. GPS, while not essential, can really come in handy. Tune in to the radio or phone apps for traffic updates and of course weather. That way you won’t waste time in unexpected construction. Phone apps can also be a great way to find cheap, last minute accommodations and food.

 

6. Drive the Speed Limit

– Driving with an out of state license can draw extra attention from police, so don’t add to it by being a speed demon. Just in case you do get pulled over though, make sure you know where license, registration, insurance, and all important documents are in the car. And remember that politeness goes a long way with everyone, including law enforcement. As an added bonus, driving the speed limits improves gas mileage!

 

7. Turn Around

– If despite GPS and maps you find yourself lost pull over as soon as possible. Don’t keep going in the hope your path will magically right itself; it probably won’t. Stop and figure out where you went wrong. If you feel you can correct the mistake from where you are, do so. If not, backtrack to last place you knew where you were going. In the long run, this will save time and headache. If you feel lost in the middle of nowhere and don’t know how to right yourself, call emergency services.

 

8. Bring a Cooler

– Pack sandwiches for the first day of the trip instead of stopping for fast food. It’ll save time and money (and probably fat and calories). Then throughout the trip, keep the cooler packed with fruit, water bottles, or whatever cool treats you like.

 

9. Ask the Locals

– While the Internet provides a wealth of information, to find out what a city’s really like ask the people who live there. Chances are they’ll be more than happy to tell you where to get the best bbq or catch the coolest concert.

 

10. Don’t be Afraid to Stop

– Part of the beauty of the road trip is the fact that it lets you make things up as you go along. So when you see a sign for a scenic view or a quirky store pull over and check it out. These little detours also help break up a long day of driving, keeping fellow passengers from getting restless.

 

Have tips of your own or road trip stories you want to share?  Let us know in the comments section below!

 

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