They say travel it’s more about the journey than the destination, and that’s doubly true for road trips. One of the best ways to make some great, life-long memories with your close friends or family is to get into a car, hit the open road, and drive.
With good music, open lanes, and gas station snacks, having fun is a guarantee. But there are some potentially unexpected pitfalls that you may be susceptible to.
To ensure you and the gang have uninterrupted fun, there are a few things you need to know before going on your road trip, here are the most important considerations to keep in mind.
What Route Will You Be Taking?
Because of the considerably long distance, you will be traveling, you will have multiple options in terms of the different routes you can take.
You can choose this route on a variety of factors. For example, do you want a scenic route? Do you want the shortest distance? Are you looking for the least congested path? Does your route allow for any fun, spur-of-the-moment detours?
With the countless GPS and traffic apps available today, you can easily pick the fastest, least congested route available to any destination. But, oftentimes, these paths are more practical than interesting.
If you are going up the coast, why not drive by the ocean, for example? If you plan your route, you can account for any landmarks you want to visit, and any sights you want to see along the way, and still, find the paths to get you to these places and your ultimate destination in the least time and traffic possible.
Can Your Car Handle the Journey?
You need to know if your car can handle the journey. A lot of us drive older cars, especially any struggling fresh graduates, and our cars may struggle to go too far a distance.
Road trips can take days, maybe even a week or so, and more often than not, your car may be going nonstop. If you plan on switching drivers and not settling into a hotel at any point, then your car may only get a break at gas stations and food stops.
If your car can handle the journey, you still need to make sure it’s in tip-top shape. Make sure your tires aren’t balding. Get a fresh oil change — opt for synthetic oil, it costs more, but it’ll give you more miles before your next oil change.
Make sure your AC and heaters are working properly. Get a tire alignment and make sure your tires are balanced.
Make sure you have a spare tire and all the tools you need in the event of a flat. Essentially, make sure your car is as ready for this journey as you and the gang.
Are You Covered?
You know what route you’re taking and you know your car is up for the journey, but can you ever be sure that everyone else on the road is as prepared as you are?
You’re going to see it all on a good road trip; drivers that think they’re on a formula 1 track, old grandmas driving 40 mph on the freeways, random road blockages, and even broken-down cars in the middle of the road. With all these potential road hazards in your way, you are susceptible to car accidents.
You need to know that you are covered, should such an event occur. Make sure to check that your vehicle is insured, your gang is listed as accepted drivers, and that you have a copy of your policy in your glove box.
The legal advisors at https://www.noogalaw.com/car-accident-lawyer/ in Chattanooga, TN explain that if in the event of an accident, your insurance company refuses to cooperate or the at-fault party costs you such severe damages that your insurance payout isn’t sufficient, you do have legal recourse to seek rightful compensation.
Be sure to file a police report and seek medical attention if you experience any car accidents on your road trip.
Did You Schedule?
You now know where you’re going, how you’ll get there, that your car can handle it, and that you’re prepared for the unexpected, but do you know how long it’ll take? Making a schedule can allow you and everyone with you to rest, eat, and enjoy the open road equally.
If you plan on non-stop driving, schedule shifts for each licensed driver on the trip with you.
If you plan to catch some Zs at night make sure you can arrive at your hotel at the right check-in hours. And, of course, if you plan to visit some landmarks or see some sights, plan on when you should ideally arrive as they may have set hours of operation.
Road trips are the ultimate open-road experience. There is no better way to bond with your friends and truly see your beautiful country.
But even though this is all about having fun, you still need to be safe and responsible. So, make sure you know everything you need to before getting behind the wheel. Now that you’re fully prepared, it’s time to go out and have fun.