Summer is right around the corner and it will be here before we know it. As we all know, summer is one of the best times to pack up the car and hit the road. You can have a destination in mind or just have a rough idea. Either way you can’t go wrong.
However, a little bit of planning or at least preparing should go into it before you hit the road this summer for your next road trip. We are going to share some helpful and useful tips for your next road trip. Some should be common sense, while others might be a little more outside of the box.
A road trip should be fun for all who are involved. It shouldn’t feel like a punishment because you are trapped inside of a car all day long. The below tips will help you make the most out of your next road adventure.
Before you embark on your journey be sure to fill up the tank. There is nothing worse than hitting the road to only have to stop an hour later and get gas. Fill up the night before or right when you leave.
If you are planning on driving out west, midwest, or through the mountains on the east coast, a gas station can be a challenge to find sometimes. If you are unsure of what will be around it is best to fill up your tank once you hit half a tank. The last thing you want is to be low on fuel and still miles away from the nearest gas station.
If you are planning a long trip make sure all your maintenance is up to date. Get the oil changed, check the tires, top off all your fluids. Nothing will ruin your trip more than having to spend a couple of hours or days in the shop when it could have been prevented with a little check up.
Clean it up
A couple days before you leave on your road trip take the car to the car wash. Get it nice and clean on the inside and out. Starting off with a clean car makes the trip go so much better. Take out anything that you don’t need.
This way you have plenty of space for everything you need on your road trip. Clean out the center console of old receipts. Find that french fry that fell months ago. Put all your change in one easy to reach and find spot.
Grab some paper
I know that you have Google Maps or another map app on your phone but make sure you get a couple of paper maps of the states you will be traveling through. It may be hard for some of you to believe but you won’t always have cell service.
If you get lost having a paper map on standby could be a lifesaver depending on where you are going. If you are a AAA member you can get free maps from them. If you don’t have a membership make sure you print out some maps from home or buy a road atlas.
Get a membership
Get yourself a membership to a roadside service like AAA. It gives you that piece of mind when you are traveling. Plus they usually have a lot of amazing deals like discounts at hotels and restaurants. Or you can pick up free maps.
Hit the Grocery store
It’s a good idea to hit up your local grocery store before you leave to grab snacks and other essentials for your road trip. Food at gas stations can be expensive. Save yourself a little money by buying snacks before you leave.
It’s also not a bad idea to pack some small meals to have, like sandwiches. Ever since the pandemic some places have had odd hours and may not be open when you stop by. Heck they might be closed on certain days of the week. It’s better to be prepared than having to grab whatever you can find.
Also remember to grab drinks before you hit the road and a cooler to put them in. Again this can save you a ton of money when you buy them at the grocery store than a gas station or a little roadside stand.
Plan for delays
Make sure you are planning for delays and hope you don’t need the extra time. You never know when an accident will block the road or a construction project just started. Plan a little wiggle room into your travel plans.
Plan some rest stops
Plan on making some rest stops if you are driving far. I personally drive from PA to Florida in one shot. It is around a 16 hour drive and I stop every three to four hours for gas, food, or just to stretch my legs.
You might be able to go longer or have to stop more often. It won’t hurt to look at the map beforehand to plan out a couple of your stops. A new addition to my plans down I-95 is a stop at Buc-ee’s in South Carolina. I can get gas and anything else I need with just that one stop.
Before you leave on your trip make sure you download some playlist, podcast, road trip apps, and movies. Like we said before some areas won’t have cell service. If you downloaded this stuff beforehand you won’t run out of stuff to listen to and you won’t have to play radio roulette.
Double Check before you leave
Make sure your place is in order before you leave. Take out the trash. Throw away food that will expire while you are away. Make sure your windows and doors are all locked.
Give a key to a family member or trusted friend that can grab your mail every couple of days. Just double check everything is in order before you hit the road.
These are just some basic tips for your next road trip. Following them will get you started and should give you a little direction. Remember a road trip should be fun. It’s all about the journey and you can have one heck of a journey.