5 Things You Should Know Before Your Next Road Trip

a person's hand on a window sill looking out at a city below

A road trip involves traveling extended distances by road. These distances exceed typical commute times. It’s possible to make a short road trip in one day, but most road trips last for a few days, weeks, or months. It is possible to complete a road trip by bus, but it’s most common for people to rent a car or use their vehicles. Road trips are incredibly popular in America, with 53% of vacationing families embarking on road trips each year.

Although it’s possible to go on a last-minute road trip without much planning, a little bit of preparation can ensure you have a stress-free road trip you’ll get the most out of.

1. Insurance Coverage

Check your insurance plan to confirm what it covers. You may have different insurance needs while you’re traveling. You can review car insurance NSW plans and compare your insurance options to confirm you have the best policy possible. Some insurance plans include towing costs and roadside assistance, while others do not. Insurance comparison tools can be used to compare insurance providers and what their plans cover. The tools also provide information about plan rates and deductible amounts, which you can use to identify the most affordable insurance plan that fits your needs.

2. Vehicle Status


Have your vehicle inspected by a mechanic before you depart on your road trip? Get the oil changed and top up the essential fluids. You may also want to replace your car’s tires or have them rotated. Routine maintenance checks can ensure you catch potential issues before you depart and prevent your vehicle from breaking down on your trip. The number of automobile repair shops across the United States has been steadily increasing over the last decade, representing the growing need for vehicle repairs. If your vehicle breaks down in a small town, you could spend days waiting for parts to be shipped in or incur expensive towing costs to reach a location with a qualified mechanic. Completing a thorough vehicle inspection and performing routine maintenance will enable you to set out on your trip with confidence in your vehicle.

3. Resources


You may not want to make a rigid itinerary before you depart, but it’s a good idea to have a general sense of where you’re going. If you know the region you’re visiting, you can research the weather and pack accordingly. Time of year and elevation can significantly impact the average temperatures and what type of precipitation you can expect.

Changes in elevation and location can also affect your cell phone service. Check your cell provider’s coverage map before you leave to identify areas where you may have no signal. If there are areas without cell coverage, you may want to purchase road maps to ensure you don’t get lost without a GPS signal.

Travel guides provide the locations of gas stations, restaurants, grocery stores, campgrounds, and hotels. For example, when traveling to the Arctic on Canada’s Dempster Highway, there is only one place to stop for gas or supplies en route. Familiarizing yourself with service gaps can ensure you prepare, so you do not run out of gas or food.

4. Sites of Interests

Read about the region you plan to visit. You may want to stop at the Key to the South if you’re interested in Civil War history, or you may be drawn to the music and food in the Crescent City. Take time to learn about notable sites in the area to avoid overlooking the destinations that would interest you most. It’s also a good idea to do some research in advance, so you don’t have to spend time on your trip doing research.

5. Needs at Home



Make a list of all the things that need to be taken care of at home before leaving. You can contact the post office and have your mail delivery stopped while you’re away to prevent your mail from stacking up. You may also want to hire a security company or a house sitter to look after your property. If you have a pet, you may opt to hire a pet sitter or have your pet stay in a special pet hotel while you’re away. Securing your pet and property will ensure you can enjoy your road trip without worrying about things at home.