Road trips can be a great way to have a fun filled vacation. A person has a sense of freedom being on the road and being in charge. Apart from that, a road trip invariably brings a lot of experience and exposes one to many new things, which is what traveling is all about. However, before hitting the road, a person should take care of the following few things.
1. A map should be consulted and the route should be planned carefully. After this, these routes should be researched to help you to identify a backup route. The back up route should be decided on, if you feel there could be a potential problem along the planed route. For example, if some route has a history of blizzards and heavy snowfall for the particular time of the year when you are planning the trip, a back up route can help you get to your destination quickly, without being stranded in a difficult situation. Also some routes about the proposed route should be noted down on paper, to avoid looking at large maps while driving, which could be both cumbersome, as well as dangerous.
2. It is important to correctly estimate the time it will take to travel. There are many Internet sites, which can help you do this very effectively. This can help you to decide when you will be able to stop for gas, use the facilities and even eat. The stops for food should be along major towns, as many of the rural areas across America do not have good restaurants.
3. You should have your car thoroughly checked by a mechanic, making sure that all the belt and fluid levels are within good driving parameters. Oil change should also be carried out, to avoid problems on the road. All this should be done a few days in advance, as it might be possible that you might not get an appointment with the mechanic or some snag could take a long time to fix. The car should be driven a few times around the city before leaving on the trip, to make sure that everything is working properly, as an early breakdown would be a big mood spoiler.
4. The car should be kept ready according to the climatic conditions you would be traveling in. If traveling through snow and a cold climate, you should carry snow chains and extra anti freeze. If traveling through a hot area, the Air Conditioning system may require extra coolant. It is important to take into account both, the weather you will be driving in and the weather at your destination.
5. If your car has a wheel lock instead of a hubcap, you should make sure you know where the keys are. Flat tires are the most common problem faced on the road and changing one can be a very tricky exercise in absence of the key, otherwise, it hardly takes few minutes.
6. Have the car cleaned. On a road trip, you are going to spend most of the time in the car. Traveling in a clean car will help you feel fresh and it is also important from the hygiene point of view. You would also be traveling around in your car once you reach your destination and so it is very important to clean the car before leaving on a trip.
7. You should carry an emergency kit in your car, which should include motion sickness pills, bandages, pain relievers and also instant ice and cold packs. This could be very helpful if you are in the middle of nowhere and the nearest emergency room is miles away.
8. Carrying some entertainment along the way is a good idea. This could include old radio shows or your collection of favorite songs on cassettes or CD’s. If you love watching movies, you could carry your favorite DVD’s to watch on a portable player. If you are a bit old fashioned, you can just sing along with friends on the way or tell stories. Anything works as long as nobody is getting bored.
9. You should check your license and your insurance before leaving on the trip, to make sure everything is in place. This would be helpful if you are stopped anywhere along the way. Also, you should have your insurance information handy, in case you meet with an accident. A one eight hundred number might be very helpful to you in such situation.
10. It is a good idea to fill the car with gas and check the tire pressure to increase the mileage.