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I love road trips. I’ve taken so many over the last two years that I feel like I’m a bit of an expert (if I do say so myself). I’ve driven through the Canadian Rockies, around the South Island of New Zealand, Europe, the UK and Death Valley. Well, my other half may have driven the majority of it. All that time spent in cars got me thinking about road trips. What do I always do on road trips? What are my top road trip tips and tricks? Well, here’s what I came up with.
TOP 10 ROAD TRIP TIPS AND TRICKS
1) Always bring a paper map in case your GPS and/or phone malfunction or die. We rely too much of technology nowadays and forget to use our eyes and minds. We panic when GPS can’t locate us or our batteries die. Instead, just bring a map and read the signs. Plus, maps make fun souvenirs.
2) BE PREPARED. Make sure you always have a spare tyre in the car. Nobody wants to live that scene from the horror movies where you can a flat tyre and end up stranded by the side of the road in the dark. Make sure you are familiar with the road side assistance policy of your rental or insurance company. I always buy my spare tyres from this online shop – autodoc.co.uk , it always seems to have the best deals. You may also want to invest in a rear-view camera to make life easier while on the road, check out Tadibrothers for a simple IPhone backup camera.
3) Always keep snacks and drinks in the car. So many times I’ve thought that there would be a shop or restaurant somewhere along the way and there hasn’t been. Then I’ve gotten hangry or thristy and it’s kind of ruined that section of the journey. SO, make sure the car is stocked with water and non-perishable food.
4) Make note of petrol stations along the way. You don’t want to be caught without fuel. In the Rockies and Death Valley we got close a few times and then ended up having to pay through the nose when we did find a station. You can do this easily on Google maps.
5) Keep blankets or sleeping bags in your car. This is mainly just in case you end up unable to find accommodation, OR want to save money and sleep in your car. If you’re the outsdoorsy type then pack a tent as well.
6) Make a road trip playlist. In the future, after your trip those songs will remind you of your road trip memories forever.
7) Bring a spare car key. Many a time I or one of my road trip partners have nearly lost the car key. Those moments of panic are not worth it. And imagine if you actually did lose it?! If it’s your car, bring the spare. If it’s a rental, ask for a spare.
8) Make a plan, but be flexible. It’s much more fun to be spontaneous. That being said, do let people at home know where you are every night – JUST IN CASE. You never know what kind of oddballs you might meet on the road. Best to cover all your bases.
9) TAKE PHOTOS, VIDEOS AND BUY SILLY SOUVENIRS. Don’t spend your whole time behind a lens. The feelings and memories are the best part. BUT you will seriously appreciate the physical mementos. I always collect stickers from places I road trip around. I have also created videos from all my trips on my Youtube Channel.
10) Bring a medical kit. I know a lot of my road trip tips and tricks seem to be safety related. SORRY! But a medical kit is important. Even if you don’t get hurt or sick you may come across someone else who needs help.
COME ON A ROAD TRIP WITH ME
This was my epic 18 day road trip through New Zealand.
Now, there you have it, my top 10 road trip tips and tricks. I hope at least one of them was useful. I could have written a list of 100 tips I guess, but I suspect a lot of them would just be common sense. If you’ve never taken a road trip before I urge you to do so. They are one of my favourite ways to travel. If you need some road trip inspiration then make sure you check out this list of ultimate road trips by National Geographic.
Have you been on a road trip??
Where was your favourite road trip?