There’s a certain appeal to the road that lures many travelers to traverse the land mile by mile. However, the longer the trip, the more prepared you need to be. This is why we’ve come up with this guide to help you plan a long road trip successfully.
How to Plan a Long Road Trip
Step 1: Pack the Essentials
- A real map. Although everyone uses a GPS these days, technology can fail. Therefore, you must bring a backup in the form of a road atlas. This way, you’ll never end up stranded.
- Car essentials. Make sure you have your driver’s license, your car registration, your insurance information, the manual for your car, an extra car key on a separate key ring, roadside assistance numbers or membership cards, a spare tire, and tools to change a tire, and a water-resistant flashlight.
- Roadside emergency kit. You should compile a kit that contains a first aid kit, jumper cables, air compressor, tow rope, tire repair kit, window breaker/seatbelt cutter, tire pressure gauge, multi-tool, reflective warning triangle, LED headlamp flashlight, electrical tape, bungee cords, cable ties, and work gloves.
- Phone accessories. You must have a car phone charger, a hands-free phone mount, and a portable charger.
- Hygiene and cleaning supplies. Keeping you and your car clean is a must on the road. Therefore, make sure you pack a garbage bag, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, tissues, napkins, and body wipes.
- Outdoor essentials. You never know what situation you might find yourself in, so be prepared for anything by packing an umbrella, bug spray, sunscreen, and extra layers of clothing.
Step 2: Come up with a road trip strategy
It’s a good idea to decide how you’re going to tackle those long miles ahead of time. For instance, how many breaks do you want to take and at what frequency? Having a plan for breaks ahead of time will reduce your stress and give you something to look forward to.
You should also plan how you want to spend your money. For example, do you want to buy all your snacks and meals on the road or would you rather save money for souvenirs and activities? Also, are you sleeping in hotels, camping, or spending the night in your car in a parking lot? Do you plan on deciding ahead of time where you’ll sleep, or will it be spontaneous? Additionally, you need to consider whether you want to take the scenic route or a straightforward course when planning your route. This decision will ultimately depend on what your goals for the road trip are. In other words, are you driving for the pleasure of it or to get to a destination?
Step 3: Care for your car
It’s important that you clean your car before and during your trip. Before you set out, make sure your car is clean. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time in it, so the cleaner it is, the more comfortable it will be. Furthermore, take some time during your trip to purge your vehicle of undesirable mess. This will significantly improve your enjoyment of the voyage.
Step 4: Select entertainment
Even if you’re driving through a beautiful landscape, you’ll likely be bored at some point. Therefore, to make the miles pass by easier, you should plan some entertainment for your drive.
As the driver, your entertainment options are limited. The best thing is to have something you can listen to. So, load up your phone with podcasts, audiobooks, and some good music.
As a passenger, your entertainment options are more varied. You can bring some crafts like knitting or coloring to do. You could watch movies on a portable media device. You could even do sitting exercises.
Planning a long road trip might seem daunting, but if you follow these four steps, you’ll be well on your way to having a great voyage.