The road trip is something of a rite of passage, an experience everyone should have at least once in their life. Taking to the road and driving hundreds or maybe thousands of miles across the vastness of the North American continent, traversing deserts, open plains, forests, vast cities and tiny townships. The joy of the open road in a country with some of the best routes in the world. An experience not to be missed, so don’t let a lack of preparation spoil your vacation.
Where do you want to go? The choices are almost infinite, so have a discussion with your companions to see where everyone would like to travel to. It’s best to have a destination in mind – a classic example would be a trip to Vegas, spending a few days in the city before driving home again. Or you could go camping in New Hampshire, fishing in Oregon, shopping in Dallas. Wherever you decide on, make a list of any equipment you might need to take if you’re planning a special activity at your destination.
Is your car big enough for a road trip? You will be spending eight to ten hours a day sitting in your vehicle, so it needs to be comfortable enough for you and all your passengers. You’ll have luggage, supplies and possibly equipment for any activities you plan to do, and it’s no fun being stuck in a cramped car all day with hardly any room to breathe. Do you have air con? Is there plenty of leg room for everyone? If your car is too small or not well-equipped, you’d be better off hiring one that will accommodate everyone and everything with ease. If your car is the one for the job, make sure you check tire pressures, oil, water, brake fluid, transmission fluid, washer bottle, and brakes before you go. It’s a good idea to take extras like water, oil and a gas can with you too. Have a look at your service log and if anything is due like a cam belt change or wheel alignment, get it done before you go. Be prepared for emergency roadside repairs by taking essential spares. If you do need to get anything for the car, check out prices online at autoserviceprices.com.
When you plan your route, work out how far you’d like to drive each day and see if there are any specific roads you’d like to use. You might want to take a detour along a more scenic route rather than just sticking to the main highway for example, or you might want to stop at a site of interest on the way. Calculate the driving time for each leg and see what choices you have for overnight stops. You need to decide what kind of accommodation you’d like, a simple motel off the highway, or a luxury hotel in town. Navigating should be a breeze if you have sat nav, but it’s worth taking a roadmap as well just in case the equipment goes wrong.
Enjoying the journey is a fundamental part of a successful road trip, and planning your trip will help make it a vacation to remember – for all the right reasons!