Key Things You Should Always Do Before Going on a Long Road Trip

Key Things You Should Always Do Before Going on a Long Road Trip

If you want your road trip to be memorable for all of the right reasons, then there are a few things you are going to want to do before you head off on the highway…

The Ultimate Checklist for Your Car

Service Your Ride

Before you do anything else, you are going to want to give your car (a.k.a. your trusty steed) a thorough health check. This isn’t just a quick glance under the hood and a hopeful pat on the dashboard. We’re talking oil changes, tire checks (including that elusive spare tire), and brake inspections. Your car should be as ready for adventure as you are.

The Forgotten Heroes (Fluids)

Cars, much like humans, need to stay hydrated. But instead of water and the occasional sports drink, they prefer coolant, brake fluid, and windshield washer fluid. Check these levels to ensure your car won’t throw a tantrum because it’s thirsty.

Light It Up

Ensure all your lights and indicators are working. It’s not just about seeing and being seen; it’s about signaling your intentions to fellow travelers and avoiding a mime act on the highway.

Tech Prep: Don’t Let Your Gadgets Let You Down

Charge It

In the digital age, a dead phone is akin to being stranded on a desert island. Before you leave, charge all your gadgets, and don’t forget the chargers and power banks. Being prepared means never having to say, “My phone died right before we saw the world’s largest rubber band ball.”

Map It Out

Sure, getting lost can lead to unexpected adventures, but let’s keep those to a minimum. Update your GPS and download offline maps. There’s a certain peace of mind that comes from knowing you can find your way back to civilization—or at least to the nearest gas station.

Playlist Perfection

The road trip playlist is not just background music; it’s the soundtrack of your adventure. It should be a mix of sing-along classics, guilty pleasures, and those songs that somehow turn everyone in the car into a backup dancer. Spend time crafting this musical journey; it’s as crucial as the road you’re on.

Emergency Kit: Because Surprises Aren’t Always Fun

The Basics

Your car’s emergency kit should include a first aid kit, flashlight, jumper cables, and a spare tire with all the tools to change it. Think of it as packing an umbrella; if you have it, you probably won’t need it.

Personalized Additions

Tailor your emergency kit to your trip. Heading through the desert? Extra water is a must. Trekking into colder climates? Throw in thermal blankets. It’s about being prepared for your specific adventure.

The Lifeline

Having the number for roadside assistance and other important contacts saved in your phone (and written down somewhere, because technology loves to fail at dramatic moments) can be a lifesaver. Literally.

Key Things You Should Always Do Before Going on a Long Road Trip

Food and Snacks: The Fuel for Your Soul (And Sanity)

The Great Debate

Healthy vs. Indulgent Snacks: Striking the right balance between nutritious snacks and those irresistible treats is crucial. Carrot sticks and hummus can keep you feeling good, while a stash of your favorite candy can boost morale during the long stretches. Remember, a well-timed chocolate can be just as important as a balanced meal when you’re miles away from civilization.

Hydration Station

It’s always a good idea to keep lots of water bottled within easy reach when you are on a road trip. Why? Because staying hydrated is key to feeling good and having a clear head when you are out and about. Plus, it gives you a great excuse to stop and take in the view regularly.

The Mess Factor

Oh, and you are, for sure, going to want to pack snacks, but you need to make sure that you consider the messiness of your chosen snacks, not just the taste! The last thing you want is to turn your car into a sticky, crumb-filled mess, right? But pack a trash bag just in case!

Comfort and Entertainment: The Long Haul Essentials

Dress Code

It’s always smart to think about comfort first when dressing for a road trip. Soft, loose-fitting clothes and comfortable shoes should be your go-to. Remember, you’ll be sitting for hours, so those skinny jeans might not be the best choice.

Entertainment Unplugged

Okay, so most of us have cars that are packed with features like Bluetooth that enable us to connect our music via our phones, or even mini video screens our passengers can watch a movie on. But, don’t let that prevent you from packing some more low-tech options like books, magazines and podcasts which give a whole different vibe for you and your ross trippin’ companions.

Pillow Talk

Spending lots of time in a car? You need a good neck pillow and a snuggly blanket, no ifs or buts!

Pre-Departure Home Checklist: Because Coming Home Shouldn’t be a Downer

Security Measures

Double-check that your home is secure before you leave. Lock all doors and windows, and set an alarm if you have one. The peace of mind knowing your home is safe will make your road trip more enjoyable.

The Fridge Clean-Out

Nothing welcomes you back from a trip like the smell of expired milk. Avoid a nasty surprise by clearing out perishables and taking out the trash before you head out.

Energy Saving

Unplug appliances that don’t need to be on while you’re away. It saves energy and reduces the risk of an electrical mishap. Plus, coming home to a lower utility bill is a nice post-trip bonus.

The Rituals of the Road-Trip Gods

The Sacred Playlist Initiation

As you set off, hit play on your carefully curated playlist. Let the first song herald the start of your adventure, setting the tone for the miles ahead.

The Oath of the Open Road

Make a fun pact or set an intention for the journey. Whether it’s to try something new, find the best roadside diner, or simply enjoy each other’s company, having a shared goal can add an extra layer of excitement to your trip.

Documenting the Odyssey

Plan for photo ops and consider keeping a journal of your travels. These mementos will help you relive the adventure for years to come and share the stories of your journey with others.

Preparation is the key to a perfect road trip, and with this list, you will now be more prepared than ever!

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