Planning to Go on a Road Trip? Here’s How to Prepare
A road trip is a quintessential part of American life, so much so that all sorts of European arthouse directors have paid homage to it. And it’s become its own cinematic subgenre. There is something uniquely soothing and inspiring about embarking upon the open road, and most people put a road trip on their bucket list.
If you, like thousands of other people, are planning to go on a road trip this summer, there are a few details you should be aware of so that you’re fully prepared. Here are a few points to consider as you dream up your next getaway.
Choose a Route
Once you’ve decided upon the destination, you need to square away the route you’d like to take right out of the gate. Most people choose to focus on the most scenic version of their travels possible, since road trips aren’t always defined by a particular destination. Rather, part of the enjoyment lies in the route itself, and being able to do a ton of sightseeing along the way. That’s where the whole romance around Route 66 comes from. Taking back roads can be a lot more interesting than most interstate highways, but it does mean that you need to plan your trip properly ahead of time. Few things are worse than getting lost while on the road and not having a plan b.
Type of Car
Before you go on your adventure, you should double-check to see if your car is built for the kind of trip you have in mind. The sad truth is that not all cars are built the same, and few can withstand the pressure brought about by a long road trip. Unfortunately, it is likely that any car breaks down in the middle of a long and laborious trip, and you wouldn’t be doing yourself any favors by leaving in a truck or large van. In all cases, you will need to have a backup plan and some emergency contacts at the ready if you do run into any trouble, so be sure to leave your house well armed with that information.
Get a Tune Up
If your vehicle is indeed the ideal piece of metal for you to travel with, then be sure to take care of it well in advance of your departure date. Try to plan ahead and get your annual tune up done earlier, ideally a few days before you travel. Make sure that there aren’t any mechanical problems, and get your oil changed. Also, it might be helpful for you to get the windshield wiper fluid refilled in case you end up in the middle of a storm, and so on. Making sure that you have everything in working order will enable you to drive for long periods of time without having to worry too much about running into any trouble on the road.
Road trips are a lot of fun, and something that people should experience at least once in their lives. The trick, however, is to plan properly ahead of time, and not to make the mistake of overestimating you and your car’s capacity. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a rotten situation that will kill any romance the open road ever held for you.