Ready to load the car and hit the road? Whether you’re heading off to college or taking a trip with the kids, it takes some planning. So before you get behind the wheel, make a checklist of everything you need. And while you’re at it, discover a few hacks along the way. Here are 14 hacks to make your road trip go smoothly.
14 Hacks To Organize A Smooth Road Trip
A road trip is the best trip in your entire life. If you do not plan out a smooth road trip, the full enjoyment will be destroyed. For planning out a smooth road trip, you will need good robust route planning along with the essential emergency medical supplies.
Here are 14 hacks to organize a smooth road trip.
#1. Pack Your Cooler With Dry Ice
Pack a cooler with refreshments for your road trip and make sure they stay ice cold for days — with dry ice! While it seems intimidating at first, dry ice is relatively easy to use once you understand how to handle it safely.
Plus, it will keep your food and drinks as cold as possible. Learn how to use dry ice in a cooler and discover hard coolers rugged and durable enough to transport to a campsite or be rolled to the beach.
#2. Bring An Emergency Kit
Carry an emergency kit that includes necessary items such as a battery charger, a first aid kit, extra drinking water, and jumper cables. Another versatile piece of emergency equipment is a flashlight, which can be used to hail down passing cars or roadside service vehicles in an emergency.
Learn how to use all these emergency items effectively and safely — especially the jumper cables! — and you can be back on the road trip in no time.
#3. Prepare Your Vehicle For The Journey
Before you put on hundreds of miles or so in your vehicle, make sure it’s up to snuff. Take it to a reliable mechanic to have it serviced at least a week in advance. At the very least, get an oil change and check the tire pressure.
While you’re on a road trip, make sure the spare tire is in good working order, too. Check the tread on the tire and the pressure in case you need it as a backup for a flat tire. Also, make sure you know how to change your own tire with a jack and lug wrench.
#4. Get A Rooftop Cargo Box
A rooftop cargo box can free up interior space for passengers and provide a bit of elbow room. Fill it with compressible items and gear such as sleeping bags, backpacks, and luggage.
#5. Use Travel Apps to Find Amenities and Attractions
Countless travel apps are available to help you find everything from hotels to gas stations, from Trip Advisor to iExit. You can even use Roadtrippers to find unique roadside attractions and sights along the way.
All you have to do is put in your route, and you’ll find everything you need. You can even collaborate to find the perfect itinerary for a road trip.
#6. Bring A Refillable Water Bottle
Say no to single-use plastic and carry your own water bottle. Even better — choose a thermos or stainless steel container that can serve as both a coffee mug and water bottle.
Then, after your morning joe, just give it a quick rinse, and you’re good to go. Keeping hydrated is extremely important on the road and can even help you stay alert during a road trip.
#7. Pack Strategically
When packing for a road trip, don’t overdo it! Instead, think minimally and pack strategically. For example, when packing clothes, consider using an overnight backpack instead of hauling all your luggage into the hotel room every night.
Also, when it comes to loading up the car, add the nonessential items that you will only need once you arrive at your final destination, keeping essential gear and items like cameras and personal items on you.
You want to carry men bags that are capable enough to store all your essentials. At the same time, you do not want to be lugging around too much. This would simply derail your travel experience. You want something that is functional as well as stylish. Smaller items like smartphones, passports, medicines, cologne, etc, should fit in the same.
#8. Keep The Car Tidy And Yourself Clean
Keep your car tidy with a small trash bag, along with some wet wipes, hand sanitizer, and paper towels. That way, you can throw away granola bars and candy wrappers, wipe your hands clean, and anywhere else that might get crumbs or smears. A few extra road trip tips: Hang the trash bag on the back of a seat and compile everything in a container for accessibility.
#9. Check Your Pit Stop Ratings
Speaking of clean, when it comes to bathroom breaks at pit stops, it can be hit or miss. But fear not! With apps like the Bathroom Scout app or Flush, you can locate a sparkling clean restroom on your journey.
#10. Bring Plenty Of Change For Parking Meters
Long gone are the days when you needed to worry about toll booths. Now, many tolls have an automated electronic system that is cashless. The same goes for parking meters, too.
However, don’t be caught without some spare change. There are still many road trips to small towns across America that use coin-operated parking meters.
#11. Use Apps To Locate Foodie Hot Spots
Ever wish you could visit that diner or restaurant featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives or that Netflix culinary series? Now you can find all the foodie hotspots with apps and sites such as Roadfood.com and TVFoodMaps. Were you looking for a taste of the local flavor? Be sure to explore the Agricultural Marketing Service website to find schedules for local farmer’s markets in the area of a road trip.
#12. Pick Up A Multi-Outlet Adapter
Keep all your passengers plugged in with a multi-outlet adapter. This is especially true if you drive an older model car. Make sure it has enough USBs to charge all kinds of devices, from cell phones to tablets and more.
Alternatively, you could also bring a solar power charger that can rest on the dashboard.
#13. Swap The Car Air Freshener With Dryer Sheets
Car air fresheners can be strong, especially in a compact space like a car. So instead, swap them out with something more subtle like a dryer sheet or use an essential oil spray deodorizer.
Besides, keeping items off your rearview mirror and your sightlines visible and unobstructed is simply safe driving practice for your road trip.
#14. Take Frequent Breaks
Don’t set unrealistic expectations and try to drive for several hours straight. Be sure to take frequent breaks each day to stretch your legs or take shifts in the driver’s seat.
Plan accordingly and take your road trip slow enough that you have time to stop for meals and take snapshots and make memories at nearby attractions. When you take shifts, get comfortable and take a nap. Hint: Neck pillows aren’t just for flights.
These 14 tips are always effective in planning a successful road trip. When you are planning for a road trip, do not forget to check the whole route map. The best solutions are here. Then, follow these strategies and plan a successful road trip for your next vacation.