Perfect Road Trip: 7 Things To Consider Before Traveling

There is nothing quite like getting a few friends and family members together, jumping in the car and heading off on an exciting road trip. 23 percent of Americans take a road trip on the Fourth of July weekend, which is a staggering number, and highlights just how much Americans love to hit the open road for the right occasion.

Perfect Road Trip

Perfect Road Trip
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Whether you’re going a few miles up the coast or to the other side of the country, if you’re looking to make a road trip, there are few things you should consider before jumping in and setting off. Here are just a few of them:

Schedule Your Car in for a Service:

You can plan the most epic road trip in the history of humanity, but if your car isn’t roadworthy, it’s going to be cut pretty short. We’ve all seen the scene in the movie where the car spins off the road because somebody didn’t get it checked out before they left. Don’t let life imitate art, make sure you get off to a great start by having your car serviced, especially the brakes. You don’t want to let yourself and your co-road trippers down, so think safe and think ahead. Head to for a superb brake service before you hit the road.

Make Sure You Have Enough Gas Money:

As everybody knows, the price of gas is heading nowhere but up, and the last thing you and your passengers want is to find yourself out of money before the trip truly heats up. If you know where you’re heading, do your homework beforehand and find out how much money you’re going to need to keep your gas tank filled up long enough to complete your road trip. The majority of smartphones with a map app can work this out for you, but a quick Google search will also do the trick. When you have a rough idea of the cost, put your money together and keep it in a safe place to use only for filling your gas tank.

Do You Have a GPS That Works?

Do You Have a GPS That Works
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Speaking of apps and smartphones, you should make sure that at least one or two road trippers have a working GPS to hand, either on its own or as apps for travelers. Failing that, you could go old school and use a map for the entire journey, the way people did before technology made everybody a little bit lazier. You should keep a road map in your car as a precaution anyway, especially if you are heading off the beaten track. If you wind up struggling to get a signal you could find yourself getting lost, which can make the road trip a little rocky for you. If you have a map to hand you can at least find your bearings, especially if there is nobody to ask for directions close by.

Is Your Car Stocked Up?

Anybody who has driven in America can tell you; those roads can seem to go on forever! With that in mind, you should make sure your car is stocked up with everything from water and snacks for the passengers, to an extra can of gas, some oil, windscreen fluid and any tools you might need in the event of a breakdown or tire flat. You won’t regret stocking up when you’re thirsty as anything, and you pass a sign that says it’s 100 miles to the next town.

Are You Prepared for the Long Haul?

It’s all well and good to be stocked up with supplies for you and your vehicle, but if you’re taking a long road trip, there are going to be times when the conversation of your friends and the radio stations repeating the same songs over and over again just aren’t going to cut it anymore.

When you’re planning your trip, make sure you factor in the long stretches of silence, when you’ve run out of things to say to each other. A selection of CDs (if the car has a CD player), a few MP3 players (including the lead to hook it up to the car) and other forms of entertainment such as iPads for those Netflix binges, books, and magazines are all going to come in handy on the long roads.

Schedule in Those Breaks:

Schedule in Those Breaks

Whether there are one, two or four of you taking it in turns to drive over the course of your road trip, you will have to factor in some scheduled breaks along the way. You can do this on the fly and pull over into gas stations and roadside restaurants on the trip, but these are often made at times of desperation, and make for an uncomfortable journey for the people who need to go.

Instead of stopping for thirty-second toilet breaks, it’s a solid plan to look at the full journey you have planned and factor in stops along the way. For example, if you have heard that there’s a great outlet mall on a certain road, plan to stop off there and kill an hour or two. You will get to stretch the legs and take a toilet break, and it will stave off the boredom of spending too much time holed up in the car.

Have You Left Everything at Home in a Good Way:

The best part of taking a road trip is being able to forget about everything and hit the road. A million Tom Petty songs were written with this in mind, so it’s easy to forget about what you’ve left behind. It may sound like the sort of thing a boring parent would say, but it’s vital that you leave everything behind in a good way.

It can be anything from making sure your pet dog is properly cared for to ensuring that all your gas and electric is turned off. You don’t want to hit the open road and then have your thoughts invaded with thoughts like ‘Did I leave the stove on?’ You want to let the window down and feel the wind on your face, and relax into your seat without a care in the world. That’s what road tripping is all about.

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