So you want to take your car and drive it as far it can possibly go? Not sure on how to plan the trip without having severe aftermaths? Here are my major tips on having a smooth road trip.
1. Maintenance check.
There’s nothing more satisfying than gliding on a level road with a clear horizon ahead of you. Then you hear the gut wrenching sound of a tire exploding.
On a road trip, your car is your way of travel, your home, your fridge, your wardrobe, your safety blanket. Overall, your vehicle is your everything on this trip and you should treat it as your temple. Before even taking it on the road, make sure your car is in check. Tire pressure, oil change, brakes, cooling system and engine on point. The car should be in a somewhat healthy condition if you’re taking it on a mountainous ride.
Knowing how to change a tire is one advice I also highly recommend. Depending on how the roads are or how used your tires are, you should be able to change a tire if your vehicle ever has a flat. You could be stranded in the middle of the night or in the middle of nowhere. After changing in your spare tire, purchase a new one then change it again. Or go to the nearest garage.
2. Petty Cash
You can plan the trip to a T, but you will never know what ugly outcomes you might encounter during your car trip. In front of nasty surprises, be sure to have extra cash in hand. Creating a financial safety net is the minimum if anything goes wrong. Its like having a weight pulled off your shoulders.
Different paying method for different types of expenses.
- Credit for booking online (accommodation, flights, car rental). I usually use credit for theses cases or for any large purchase (above 100). A few times I’ll use it on groceries if the counter doesn’t accept my debit (different country, it happens) or if I’m out of cash. Credit is only to be used on extreme occasions.
- Debit. I use it to cash out. You can cash out from your credit, only if it has a nip. Then you can retrieve as much as you can, but don’t do it too much. You’ll need to pay interest if you’re dealing with another bank or if you’re converting your money into a different currency. With my card I do the grocery, pay my gas and any other average purchase.
However, for any card use, make sure to contact your bank and credit card company and confirm you’re traveling to another part or outside of the country. You might run the chance on having your cards blocked.
- Finally, travel with a few bills of 20’s and 50’s (depending on your currency). If you’re planning on going outside of the country, make sure you arrive at your destination with a few bills in their currency.
Of course, be careful on your expenses. I’m on the cheap side, so I’m very picky on what I’m spending my money on. Always respect your budget.
3. Don’t over plan it
May your trip be short or long, don’t overbook your agenda. As you’re driving to new destinations, you’ll discover new places and new people and you may want to dive into more explorations.
Pinpoint the places you’re the most excited about and just drive your way to it. Along the road, you might make unexpected pit stops and your trip might take longer than you have planned. If you are in a hurry, make sure you have a few days of empty space or a free afternoon in your schedule just to wander.
The memorable parts in a trip are the unexpected. The nice surprises in life bring the most of joys.