Make your next road trip memorable!
Road trips are one of the great American traditions. There's something adventurous about spending long hours on the open road to reach a faraway destination. Even the best-planned road trips can be exhausting; however, these three useful tips will help you potentially avoid a lot of stress during your trip so that you can focus on enjoying yourself!
Don't Skimp on Car Repairs
Nobody likes getting their car serviced. Although it may be a hassle to fit into the days before a road trip, make sure to get any potentially important maintenance done on your car before you leave. Car troubles become a lot more difficult when you're several hundred miles away from home, and a single flat tire can seriously mess up your schedule. If you feel like car maintenance is a hassle now, just wait until you have to figure it out on the side of a highway.
We recommend trying the penny test on your tires a few days before you're supposed to leave. While basic, this is a good indication of your tire health and can be a useful indication that tires need changing before you set out on your road trip.
Simply take a penny and gently push it into the space between two tire treads. This is done to measure some of the wear and tear on your tires. If the top of Abraham Lincoln's head is clearly visible, this is a sign that your tires should probably be replaced before setting out. A simple test now can save you the headache of roadside repairs later!
Know Your Route
Good road trips are just as much about the journey as the destination. You'll be covering a lot of distance within a relatively short amount of time, so why not use it as a chance to explore? There's bound to be some interesting stops along the way!
Thankfully, there are several useful apps that help you find interesting locales or memorable adventures along your road trip route. Roadtrippers is a helpful app in building a road trip itinerary that allows for both rest stops and small detours to interesting sights. If you're passionate about the outdoors, then The Outbound is a great app for finding hiking trails, rafting, and other nature adventures along your trip's route.
If you're going on a family road trip, consider having each family member pick one attraction or destination that they'd like to see (within reason) along the way. Depending on the length of your trip, it may be worthwhile to even extend this to picking one interesting attraction each on the initial trip, and another on the return. This is an effective way to help any children on the trip see it as an adventure!
Planning attractions isn't just fun, however, it's also a good way to familiarize yourself with the route and area—two important things to know when traveling. In the event of accidents, closures, or detours, knowing the area can help you avoid having your trip negatively impacted! Remember to be flexible and remember: it's about the journey.
Keep Your Car Clean
Let's face it, cleaning out cars after long road trips is a pretty miserable experience. Between cleaning up food crumbs, fishing spare change out cracks, and dealing with whatever strange mutant organisms are growing in the snack goo under the seats can be exhausting. Thankfully, road trip cleanliness is a field where an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure.
Make sure to be intentional about where the trash will go over the course of the trip. It's also helpful to think about ways to prevent things like liquid and crumbs from spilling while driving rough terrain or late-night hours. Sealable containers, such as plastic cereal bins lined with trash bags, can be an effective way to ensure that trash is properly disposed of.
Additionally, think about some of the most common places for crumbs to end up and ways to prevent that from happening. For instance, a lot of road trip gurus recommend picking up rubber cupcake liners to put inside your cup holders. Any crumbs or liquids that would otherwise end up in your cupholders instead is contained within a liner that's easy to remove and clean. Consider also finding household objects that you can repose as snack trays for any child passengers. Eating over a tray means that you don't have to clean any crumbs off the floor later!
Know of any other good practices for road trips? Make sure to let us know in the comments below!