Who doesn’t love a good road trip?! Getting in the car with a long drive planned and some new adventures ahead of you is exciting. I’ve just come to the end of a road trip of almost 1,000 miles from my home in Scotland down to the South Downs National Park at the bottom of England and back again and want to share my top road trip tips for a fun and safe experience!
The most important thing to do before any long drive is to make sure your car is in good condition. Check the tread on your tyres, make sure they have the right amount of air in them (too much can be just as bad as too little!), check your oil and top up your windscreen water levels. I’d also say make sure you have roadside recovery included in your car insurance policy just in case you encounter a problem and, if you’re travelling to another country, get some cheap travel insurance too so you’re covered for any eventuality.
My top road trip tip is to make sure you’re accompanied by people that you get on well with in order to avoid wanting to leave them at the side of the road 100 miles into your trip! Choose your road trip companions wisely!
Music makes everything better and driving along with the windows down (or roof if you’re fancier than me!) and the wind in your hair blasting some amazing songs is a great feeling. Make up a road trip playlist full of a mixture of old and new songs that you love to pass the time. I love using the Music Tube app (iOS devices) to create playlists that I can play even when I’m not connected to the internet. Don’t be afraid to include some old school cheesy tunes…those are sometimes the best ones on a road trip!
If you’re sitting in a car for a long time you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible so wear nice comfy clothes and if you’re a passenger and think you’ll be likely to want to have a wee snooze then take a pillow with you.
Do a little research before your road trip to find out where the best places to stop along the road are. Whether these are service stations, small towns or even just viewing areas you’ll appreciate stopping to stretch your legs and have a breather, especially if you’re the driver. I did my most recent road trip with my little dog Ben and liked being able to stop at pet friendly places along the way so he could have a rest from the journey too.
There’s nothing worse than running out of charge on your phone/iPod/kindle etc on a long trip so make sure you have your chargers and in-car adaptors at the ready.
Snacks and Drinks
Have some of your favourite sweeties or chocolates to hand to perk you up along the road when your energy levels begin to flag. Make sure you have water and juice with you too to stay hydrated.
Don’t Stick to Your Plan!
Use your planned route as a guideline but don’t feel you have to stick to it rigidly. If you drive past somewhere that looks nice or you see something interesting then stop off and explore! Those unexpected and unplanned experiences can sometimes be the very best ones. On the return leg of our road trip we made a last minute decision to stop off in The Lake District of England and stay there for a night instead of heading straight home. It was exciting to do something spontaneous and we ended up having a great time and getting to enjoy the beautiful views of The Lake District.
Do you have anymore top road trip tips? I’d love for you to share them in the comments section below!