Road tripping with college buddies is fun, but only if you are well informed. A fun trip can turn chaotic if not well planned ahead of time. A little research, productive exchange of ideas, and a little benchmarking will make your outing unforgettable. Preparing for inconveniences that you may encounter during the trip will go a long way in bettering your experience. Here are some of the things that you should know:
You need to have a purpose
You will find purpose in your road trip when you base your trip around your interests rather than just following the wind. You are students and your entire life is ahead of you, so the worst mistake you can do is waste a whole week or month just driving purposelessly. Outline the things that each one of you wishes to see and do, then select the ones you have in common. Now road trip with a purpose to discover those things!
- Planning your route is critical
Although road tripping doesn’t demand too much from you in terms of time and money, you still want to be timely and within your budget. You will save a lot of by using GPS and mobile technology to navigate unknown routes. For long trips, choose where to make your stops, where to spend the night, and what to eat. Unless you need to see or do something that can only be found in the longer route, always stick to the shortest route possible in order to cut on cost.
- You will need a budget
Road tripping should not be costly. Know your spending limit and how the money will be raised. It will help if you have a treasurer because in order to avoid a situation where you are paying for things as they come. Chances are that one of you will misuse their money and you will find yourself footing their bills. Saving all the required money and entrusting it with a reliable member will prevent such situations. Of course, it can be hard to estimate precise costs, but you should at least budget for food, drinks, gas, accommodation, and souvenirs. Also have a small budget for any inconvenience that may arise, for example, a flat tire.
Note that if you will be road-tripping abroad, each one of you will need a visa. Budget for that as well! And because visa application processes can be confusing, costly, and frustrating, ask a good travel agency to get a fake hotel reservation and a fake flight itinerary for each one of you. These documents will simplify your application procedure and lower your application budget.
- You will need snacks along the way
Bring your own food and water for the trip- the last thing you want is to get hungry and thirsty in the middle of nowhere. Agree ahead of time on who brings which snacks and who brings water and other drinks. Don’t assume that the members will bring the items without being asked to. While at it, be sure to stick to the healthy options because you need all the energy you can get for the long trip. Eating unhealthy junk food could be fun when at home, but it can be totally disastrous when you are on the road. Ditch those cookies and pastries and instead carry whole grain bars and fruits, for example. As much as possible, avoid eating in fast food kiosks. And although it is adventurous to try new cuisines as you drive through different towns, it is financially wise to avoid the super expensive restaurants.
- Your choice of car matters
You need a compact and roomy car for optimal comfort. Choose a car that has a comfortable back seat and plenty of trunk space so that you can fit everyone’s stuff and still leave enough room to stretch out and relax. You will be singing and playing games in the car, after all. Also ensure that the car has a reliable sound system for your sing-a-longs. Lastly, be sure to get the car inspected thoroughly before commencing the trip.
The information above will help your road trip with a next to zero chance for inconveniences. The key is planning the itinerary as a group and having a plan B in case everything doesn’t go as planned. Good luck.