8 Tips for A Smooth & Unforgettable Road Trip

Death Valley National Park

Flying has made travelling quicker and more convenient. However, the appeal of a road trip still stands. There’s just something about taking it slow, going from place to place, and soaking up the scenery as you take a relaxing drive. Taking a road trip with your friends is also a good way to bond with them. To get the most out of your road trip, here are tips for an unforgettable and smooth drive ahead.


1. Check Your Vehicle

Breakdown Triangle Warning
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First off, it’s important that you choose the right car for your trip type and destination. Think about whether you might need a four-wheel drive, or a roomier car if you’re travelling with friends. Next, if you are travelling a long distance, get your car checked by a mechanic before embarking on your journey! Make sure your brakes, tyres, car battery, et cetera, are all functioning well. A car breakdown is one of the most frustrating things that could happen on a road trip.


2. Road Less Travelled

Road Pathway
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Taking the highway will definitely get you to your destination the quickest, but you miss out on interesting sights. If you’re feeling adventurous, take the road less travelled or go on a detour if time allows it. Who knows, you may find yourself at a strange attraction in a nearby town, or you could be eating the best dinner you’ve ever had. When it comes to road trips, it’s all about spontaneity and going with the flow – which leads us to our next tip.


3. A Flexible Plan

Seaside, USA
Photo by Nick Baker on Unsplash

When you’re on a road trip, you’re not bound by the strict timings of a flight schedule. Instead of making a detailed plan, set a loose plan that you can adjust as you go along your trip. Discover hidden gems and underrated sights you might not have known about. If there’s one part of the plan you should follow stringently, it’s getting to your final destination on time and making sure you get enough sleep for the next day’s drive.


4. Map It Out

Adventure Map Planning
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In this day and age, Google Maps has everything you need to get to your destination. Travel times, traffic, alternate routes and more. To keep it safe, bring an actual physical map as well, especially if you’re planning to travel off the beaten path. You never know if an area has poor cellular coverage – the last thing you want is to be stranded in an unfamiliar place!


5. Eat As The Locals Do

Roadside Stall
Photo by Jose Murillo on Unsplash

If you need to grab a bite, instead of turning to Trip Advisor or Yelp, try asking the locals where to eat. Locals typically know where to get good food, and at a much cheaper price. This way, you get to experience the local cuisine and save some money while you’re at it! Even if you’re not sure what the shop or restaurant serves, it’s a great way to try new food and expand your palate.


6. Road Trip Games

Road Trip
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Travelling with friends? Aside from great music, a way to keep yourselves entertained during the long drive is to play some fun road games. Classic games like I Spy, Mad Libs, the Alphabet Game, and more are all easy games that will definitely get everyone’s competitive nature going. Just make sure you don’t distract the driver!


7. Stick To A Speed

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Road trips may be cheaper than purchasing a flight ticket, but if you’re not careful, you may end up spending almost the same amount. Driving at high speeds with sudden acceleration and decelerations is not fuel efficient. To save money on fuel, it’s best to stick to a steady and comfortable speed, especially when driving on straight roads. It’s better to get to your destination a little later than to run out of fuel in the middle of your journey.


8. Pack Snacks & Water

Death Valley National Park
Photo by Pietro De Grandi on Unsplash

It’s always better to be safe than sorry. You might find yourself getting caught in rush hour traffic, or driving down a long stretch of road with no rest stops. Packing some snacks and a bottle of water might be a lifesaver for those long barren stretches. Light snacks help keep you awake if you’re travelling solo and staying hydrated is always a good thing. If you’re travelling with friends, get each person to bring a snack for greater variety!

8 Tips for A Smooth & Unforgettable Road Trip

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