Getting Ready for a Road Trip? How To Make Sure You’re Prepared

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A road trip is supposed to be a fun and exciting adventure, but they’re stressful, tedious, and long. There’s that moment before you start driving when you’re standing in the parking lot surrounded by fear and uncertainty. Then the sound of your car engine ignites, and you feel a last-minute surge of adrenaline as you head into the unknown. Then there’s the initial nervousness of being in charge of a big chunk of metal and other people’s lives.

It’s not easy to navigate that first trip without knowing how you’re going to get from here to there. The key is to be prepared. If you’re not prepared, you could have a bad time on your trip. You don’t want that scenario, and it won’t be fun for anyone involved, so these five tips will help get your mind right and ensure you leave ready for the journey ahead.

Service Your Car

Before you leave, you should make sure your car is serviced. Even if it’s a newer vehicle, traveling long distances means putting wear and tear on the engine, so check your oil before leaving. Have a mechanic look over the engine for potential problems and fix them. If possible, get an oil change before leaving and check tire pressure. This might seem like common sense, but sometimes we overlook these things when we’re distracted by our destination or excited to get going.

You can also have a windshield replacement done before you leave. If you’re driving for an extended period, you might have to deal with rain or snow, so clear your windshield of debris and crack it open just a little in case it rains. This allows the water to run off the windshield instead of causing a foggy mess in your car.

Pack the Essentials

Nothing is more frustrating than being on the road and realizing you have forgotten something. For example, you might need a pair of scissors for your road trip but didn’t pack them, or forget to grab your sunglasses. There are countless examples of things you’ll need when you’re on the road, and if you don’t pack them, you’ll either have to make a quick stop for them or suffer without them until you reach your destination.

Have a Proper Vehicle Inspection

There are bound to be a few bumps in the road. You’ve got to drive slowly, you have various unfamiliar turns, a car full of people with different ideas on where to stop…the list goes on and on. It’s nice to know that your vehicle will make it through these unexpected curveballs without causing unnecessary damage or endangering your passengers.

Prepare for the Weather

A road trip can take you to places with a lot of rain, snow, or even extreme heat. If you’re going to a hot place, pack a case of water for everyone. It’s easy to forget about water when packing, but your body can only last 2-3 days without any liquid or electrolytes if you’re not paying attention. Even if it’s cold out, pack some jackets and blankets so that everyone can stay warm and comfortable on the trip.

Get a Map

You need to be lost, especially if it’s in an area you’re unfamiliar with. Having GPS on your phone is also helpful and can help you get your bearings straight when needed. 

Road trips are a great way to spend quality time with your family, but you have to be ready for the journey. You’ll leave stress and frustration behind and enjoy your trip from start to finish by being prepared.

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