So, you’re planning a road trip with friends. Maybe it’s a Southern U.S. food tour, or a
perhaps it’s a journey where the ultimate destination is uncertain. Wherever the road
leads, you’ve probably already packed your bags, picked out a variety of roadside
restaurants to try along the way, and arranged a place to sleep for a weekend.
In the heat of your excitement, though, it’s all too easy to forget to plan a few important
things. Make sure to take these six steps to make your next weekend adventure all the
more smooth and effortless.
Decide Whose Car Will Be Driven
The first decision is whether or not to rent a car for the journey. Though often the best
option, age limits, availability, and liability may make it hard to rent a car.
If not renting, a group of friends about to embark on a road trip must make the choice of
whose car gets to come along for the ride. The car should be well-maintained to reduce
the chances of a breakdown. Is the vehicle legal and insured? Nothing would ruin a
road trip faster than getting pulled over six states away because the tags are three
years old. Check car insurance quotes online to make sure the current policy is
comparatively comprehensive. If the current policy doesn’t seem adequate for a road
trip among friends, make the simple switch to a new one before leaving town.
Obviously, you must consider how many friends will be road-tripping with you; if you’ve
got a lot, then you’ll want to drive the most spacious vehicle. If you’re a smaller group,
consider going with the most fuel-efficient vehicle.
Reward the owner of the car being used by giving that friend a break on paying for gas.
Friends could also pick up the car owner’s check a few times while exploring the local
Share Driving Duties
For safety and the sake of politeness, driving duties ought to be rotated every few
hours. First, consider the length of the drive. For a shorter trip of fewer than five hours,
you may consider having one person drive there while another person drives back,
since you may be able to go the distance without making any stops. For longer drives,
divvy up the driving duties before you leave: for example, person A drives for two hours,
person B for the next two hours, and so on.
Decide How Gas Money Will Be Split
Each person should pay equally for gas. Consider having a “gas fund” in the form of a
jar or some other container in which each person pitches in an equal amount. You may
want to research how much it will cost you to drive to and from your destination, then
divide that amount by the total number of road-trippers. Again, it might be nice to not
have the owner of the vehicle being used have to worry about gas.
Bring a Spare Key
You don’t always think about it before going on a road trip, but you may find yourself
locked outside of your car unexpectedly in the middle of nowhere. Go on enough road
trips and eventually, you’ll wish you had brought along a spare key. Make sure one
member of your group has a spare key to the car at all times in case of emergencies.
Bring Cash for Tolls
Sometimes you don’t know when those unexpected toll booths will pop up. You don’t
want to be left stranded without a dollar. Keep a roll of change or a stack of one dollar
bills in the glove box to neutralize this issue.
Create a Road Trip Playlist
Gone are the days of creating mixtapes for a weekend adventure with friends; however,
now you have an even better option. With playlists, you aren’t limited to only 12 songs
for the entire trip!
Download an app such as Spotify and let each friend add their favorite songs to the mix.
You can add literally hundreds of songs so that you don’t have to hear the same ones
over and over again. Perhaps add some special road trip-themed songs, too. Make sure
to download the playlist before you leave, in case you drive through any back roads with
no data connection. Then, bring an auxiliary cord and you’re ready to ride.
Now it’s just a matter of enjoying the trip. Visit that Route 66 roadside taco stand you
always see on TV, or simply just sit back and look at the strange and interesting