A road trip is the best way to go if you’re planning a vacation within country.
On a road trip, you get to know the routes, enjoy the scenic views passing by, and experience what traveling on the road looks like.
Unlike planned vacations which involve non-changeable schedules and hurried tour guides, road trips allow you to go at your own speed, without having to worry about making it in time for your other scheduled stopovers.
If it is your first time on a road trip, the experience can be both challenging and enjoyable. You can stop by the roadside, if you’d like, and rest a while.
Basically, you can do what you want as you go, instead of being bound to a preset schedule.
However, a road trip isn’t without its own unique set of challenges, such as running into long traffic jams, road-side emergencies, and/or getting lost in the middle of nowhere.
To overcome these challenges and make your road trip more fun, you need to plan it properly and well in advance.
If you are planning a road trip within the United States, Pigeon Forge is a great place to visit. Located near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee, Pigeon Forge is one of the most popular holiday destinations because of the large number of fun activities one can do there.
Although there are numerous fun things to do in Pigeon Forge, some of the most popular activities include: water parks, amusement parks, shows, go-karts, putt-putt, etc.
Pigeon Forge offers such fascinating attractions as Splash Country, Dollywood, The Island, and WonderWorks, where everyone, irrespective of age, can find fun things to engage in.
But, before you go on and start packing for your first road trip adventure, here are some tips that will make your vacation a success.
1. Get your Vehicle Checked
Before embarking on any road trip, make sure you get your vehicle checked by a professional mechanic. Get its oil changed, the lights checked, windshield wiper fluid refilled, and also make sure the tires are in good condition.
It is important to plan ahead for all possible issues that could arise before departing to ensure you don’t end up stranded with a broken-down car on the side of a highway.
2. Decide On your Destination and Plan Your Routes
If you want to make sure your road trip is fun, you must plan ahead for it. First, choose your holiday destination and make a list of all the must-see places.
Make a complete plan about what routes you will be taking, and how much time it will take you to get there.
On a road trip, you can head down the unconventional paths, instead of driving down the highways only. It might take a little longer to reach your destination but the scenic views on these off-the-beaten paths are worth a few extra hours.
Also, make sure to account for any unexpected delays which can alter your schedules, such as delays on the road due to traffic jams or a preference to spend extra time at a certain location.
It might also be handy to download the route map through Google Maps beforehand, as you might not get a good network signal or even Wi-Fi on the road.
3. Make a Budget
Long holiday vacations can be quite expensive. It is best to decide on a budget before starting your journey. Include every expense from gas to hotel rooms, food, and money for entertainment activities in your budget plan.
A good budget plan anticipates all the expenditures and lets you avoid unplanned expenses. It is important to keep some extra money or credit card on hand just for emergencies.
4. Download Music and Apps for Entertainment
Going alone on a long road trip can get boring, and you might need some good music to pass the time while on the road. Download good music and podcasts to listen to on your long drive.
In addition to downloading good music, you should also get some useful apps on your smartphone that can help you navigate on your road trip.
For example, “Waze” is an app that helps you avoid traffic jams, while “RoadTrippers” helps in planning the traveling routes.
For first-time road trippers, these apps can really help save time and effort.
5. List Down your Rest Stops
If you are going for a long road trip, you might have to rest from time to time during the trip. So, you should prepare a list of all the possible rest stops you will take to get some sleep.
Sleep deprivation can affect your focus and cause accidents on the roads. Make sure there is a gas station, a place to eat, or something fun to do wherever you’re stopping.
6. Make Sure you are Carrying a Spare Tire, a Tire Repair Kit, and a First Aid Kit
Safety should come first, especially when you are on the road. It is essential to keep a first aid kit inside your car. You don’t know when the unexpected can happen, so you need to be prepared for everything before starting off on the journey.
A spare tire and a quick tire repair kit should also be part of your luggage. These small investments can save a lot of hassle down the road (pun intended).
7. Bring Snacks, Beverages, and Water
Bring enough snacks, beverages, and water with you for the road trip. It might not seem as important, but it is.
When you’re out on the open road, you might get stuck in traffic jams for several hours on end without food or water. Having snacks and beverages to dig your teeth into or gulp down in those moments can help ease your troubles.
8. Get Lots of Sleep before Departure
Lastly, you should get proper sleep before departure. You don’t want to be tired when driving. Driving in a sleep-deprived state can suck all the fun out of the road trip. So, make sure you sleep well before departure as well as on the stopovers you will make along the way.
Road trips are one of the most memorable travel experiences one can have. It offers travelers the freedom to enjoy their trip at their own leisure. For first-time road trip enthusiasts, this guide provided valuable tips that will make their first time more fun. Before embarking on the road trip, you should get your vehicle checked, plan your stopovers, make a route plan, pack emergency equipment, download your favorite music and podcasts, and bring snacks and water.
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