Instead of traveling by plane or ship, road trips can be an enjoyable alternative, and far less stressful. You leave when you are ready, and no hurrying to make your departure with TSA security searches! Your trip is less expensive, and you can route your trip through the scenic countryside. Cheaper yet, go by motorcycle, if not a family trip. Who knows what you can see with new locations and discoveries of site-seeing adventures!
Here are a few helpful tips for a great road trip:
Obviously, it helps to determine your destination for a first step in planning your trip. Involve everyone in the family in planning the trip, and research the attractions you might select. This builds interest, and excitement to involve the kids. It is a good idea to make advance reservations at your choice of hotels, so you have an idea upfront of the costs of your trip, and develop a schedule on what nights you will be at which location. It also insures that you’ll have a place to stay when you get there and are tired. Try to estimate your travel miles, and what nights you will be at given locations, without pushing so hard that your time is stressed. Hopefully, you are scheduling your trip to relax a bit.
It helps to have an up-to-date road atlas, preferably one that shows the back roads, or roads that are not shown on regular maps. If you decide to take a shortcut, or a detour, you want to make sure you have a new map. Many times in your travels you see road signs about nearby attractions. Try to allow time to visit these locations that you might not have known about before leaving on your trip.
It is imperative to make sure your automobile is in good running condition. In addition you need to have the tire tools, and a few other tools to do minor repairs. Make sure your fluids are changed and full, and hoses and belts are in good condition without cracks. Also, have a good working flashlight with you always. Check your insurance policy, or credit card agreements. Sometimes you have road assistance through some of these, if you need it. Keep those numbers in your glove box, with your car insurance and vehicle registration papers.
If your destination drive will take more than a day, plan to stop at a couple attractions along the way. Just stopping to get gas and something to eat is usually not long enough to break the boredom of a long trip. You can check online, or a lot of maps show attractions on the route you plan to take. Plan your trip to an area that interests you. Whether it is antique shops, or special restaurants you’ve seen featured on TV. Call or write to the Chamber of Commerce for the places you plan to visit. They will have information of local attractions. If you like things like horses, for example, touring a thoroughbred horse farm might be fun as you travel through Kentucky, or stop in Nashville if you enjoy country music.
Another tip is to dress for the trip you have planned. Make sure you have comfortable clothing, and especially comfortable footwear, in case you need to do some walking or hiking. Make sure you always have a coat, or jacket. Even in warm areas, it can be cold after dark. It is a good idea to pack clothes that don’t wrinkle or need ironing, and clothes that you can layer to either stay warmer or cooler without having to change.
Don’t be afraid to stop in smaller towns and check out some of the local diners. Usually the residents are proud of their towns, and don’t mind answering questions you may have about local points of interest. You will be amazed at what interesting things you will learn, and if you don’t talk to the locals, many times you will pass them by.
As you consider the advantages of a road trip, get out a map. More and more ideas are likely to come to your attention. Spending time with your family on a relaxing trip will live in your memories forever. And there is nothing that can replace those, or take them away. Truly, that is all we really have is our memories. I hope the ideas in this article will help to plan that once in a lifetime vacation that you and your family will always remember and cherish.