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5 Steps To Planning a Successful Road Trip

This blog post was updated on July 28, 2021.

Before summer kicks off, many travelers and families are plotting their summer road trips. Road trips can be one of the best ways to see the country, without spending an arm and a leg to do. However, a road trip can head south if it is not planned and prepared for properly. From taking your wheels in for a tune up to avoiding long driving days, you can plan a successful road trip in these five easy steps.

Step 1-Don’t Plan Too Much Driving in a Day: While the road trip is all about getting behind the wheel and hitting the great open road, a road trip with too much driving will only lead to fatigue and the inability to see anything along the way. When you are planning your road trip, be sure to only schedule an amount of drive time each day that you or the driver can handle. A road trip should be about taking your time to actually see something on the way.

Step 2-Tune Up Your Wheels Before You Tune Out:
Unless you are renting a car for your road trip, a road trip is at its most successful when you can trust your vehicle. Before you hit the road or even start planning your route, you need to be sure that your vehicle can pound the pavement. Travelers should have a mechanic look at their road trip vehicle to make sure everything is safe and sound for road travel. It is also a good idea to ask for a professional opinion if your vehicle is older or you will be driving thousands upon thousands of miles.

Step 3-Fill Your Smartphone With Road Trip-Friendly Apps: A successful road trip is one where you actually see something along the way and do so effectively. If you don’t know what is out there, it can be difficult to have a nice road trip. Gas apps like GasBuddy can help you find the cheapest gas along your route. Exit apps like iExit can provide you with services at every exit along the highway. For attractions, Roadside America and Roadtrippers can help the traveler plan their stops and see something along the way.

Step 4-Travel With Paper Maps:
Even if you have a fancy GPS for your road trip, cell service can be fickle while out on the open road. On the chance that you might be struggling to find a signal, it is always a good idea to have a paper map on hand. If you can’t get your GPS to work, you will be glad to have an old fashioned map to keep you on the straight and narrow.

Step 5-Always Plan a Great Outdoors Stop:
The air in the car can grow stale and sickening while on the road for too long. As you plan your road trip route, be sure to always schedule stops where you can get out and enjoy some fresh air while stretching the legs. From national parks to even hokey roadside attractions, your road trip should include time to stop and appreciate the great outdoors.


Photo: Andy

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