Summer is right around the corner, and with it comes the promise of warmer days and much fun to be had with friends and family. One of the most quintessential ways to spend some of your vacation time is on a road trip. A road trip is a great, affordable option for groups looking to get out of town for a few days or weeks and experience something new.
While you’ve likely seen a few movies about road trips, you may not have actually thought through what all is involved in order to plan and execute a successful road trip vacation. From finding the right vehicle to picking places to visit, here are a few summer road trip tips and tricks for a truly unforgettable vacation.
Pick a car that fits your needs.
While your first inclination when it comes to picking a car for your road trip is to rent something for the duration of the trip, it may actually make more sense to finance a car and purchase something new or used instead. The reason financing may make more sense is because of the incredible deals many dealerships and private sellers are offering right now. A rental vehicle may come with extra restrictions that a purchased car won’t, and the last thing you want to have happen to you on your trip is an accident that becomes a costly financial headache for a vehicle you don’t even own.
When you’re picking a car, make sure it addresses the needs of all of your passengers. While a sedan with five seats may be comfortable for a quick day trip with four people, for longer trips it’s important to have more legroom and cargo space. The size of the car you’re looking for ultimately will affect the price of your purchase to a certain degree, but by taking advantage of great financing deals, you should be able to find a great solution for everyone on your trip that fits your budget.
Ensure that every destination has something to offer everyone in your vehicle.
As you work to determine the route you’ll drive during your road trip, it’s a good idea to plan a path that hits major selling points of multiple cities and states. For example, if you’re taking a trip through the south, you should plan your stops along the way in places that offer a wide variety of activities to appeal to everyone you’re traveling with. This may mean a stop in Alabama to visit the Gulf of Mexico and take in some sun, a stop in New Orleans to try some cajun food, and a stop in Mississippi to engage in some history surrounding the Civil War.
If you’re in need of a little extra help when it comes to figuring out activities in each state you visit, checking in with each state or city’s travel bureau can help you learn more about where you’re headed and what to do when you get there. For example, the Corinth Area Convention and Visitors Bureau in Corinth, Mississippi lists places to shop and dine, as well as the route to take for a Civil War driving tour.
Plan for frequent stops.
When it’s just you driving, you likely stop less than when you have a car full of passengers. Make sure to plan for frequent stops for people to eat, stretch their legs, use the bathroom, and get gas as you calculate how much driving you’ll do each day. It’s important to take this into consideration since it will affect when you make it to each hotel along the way. Keeping frequent stops in mind will also make your trip more enjoyable, as your passengers will be less cranky from being cooped up in a car all day.
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