Road trips can be arduous, torturous methods of getting to your destination but they can also be the just reward before even reaching your targeted vacation spot. You can do a number of things to help ensure that “getting there is half the fun.”
1. Make sure your vehicle is safe and sound for the trip
A breakdown is a major annoyance to say the least – even in today’s world of CAA (AAA), On-Star and other roadside assistance programs. It can shorten and indeed destroy and terminate even the best planned road trip. A quick, one time blip in your vehicles integrity is easily handled with an inexpensive repair and you’re on your way; but a lengthy delay, an out of stock part or an ongoing problem can only spell disaster.
2. Keep a journal
If you enjoy writing this becomes a very pleasurable part of the trip. It can fill empty hours of scenic depravity when it’s your partner’s turn to drive and can occupy downtime in the evening as you strive to avoid mindless TV viewing. A well kept journal will help you remember the little things down the road in years to come - that street car accident in Mexico City or the farting sheriff in Calico Ghost Town.
3. Be aware of any potential dangers
Let’s face it; there are a lot of places in this big beautiful world of ours that are just not safe, so do your homework before you leave. Now this is a road trip so I am not talking about politically inflamed war zones. I mean the everyday dangers of urban distress. Neighbourhood street crime may not be mere vandalism. It can be and often is violent crime that can be propagated by drugs, religion, race and any number of other social factors. Know the risks and be aware of what you’re driving into.
4. Don’t Overplan
I have discovered some of the greatest treasures on earth by just ending up somewhere at the end of the day. With the communication capabilities at our fingertips today it is very easy to make last minute hotel/motel reservations so there is no need to introduce that much structure into your road trip. Some bookings may be a good idea, especially in popular areas, but remember that ever present poised dagger of the dreaded vehicle breakdown constantly hanging over your head. You may not make it to Motel American Dream by 6PM and be faced with a cancellation charge or billed for a night’s stay.
5. Let freedom reign
Freedom is the one thing that is shared by all when it comes to classic road trips. From Jack Kerouac in “On The Road” in 1951, through Wyatt and Billy (Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper) in “Easy Rider” in 1969, to Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman in “Long Way Round” and “Long Way Down” early in the New Millenium, freedom has reigned supreme.
When you incorporate these simple strategies you’ll be well on your way to creating your own “Ultimate Road Trip.”
For further information please check my website www.thatroadtripbook.com