Time to Hit the Road: Tips for a Smooth Trip

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Nothin’ quite like a wide-open road!

Picture this – you come home from college for the summer, and soon pack up everything you own and load it all into your car. Then, you drive across the country to a new city. Whether your family moved, you’re there for an internship, or you’ve just graduated, moving is a crazy experience. I just moved from Colorado to Texas, and I can tell you first hand that it was an epic drive. Here are some tips to make your trip smooth!

Plan it out. Whether it’s a move from D.C. to Philadelphia, or New York City to Los Angeles, you’ll want to look at a map (or several) and figure out which highway you want to take, where good stopping points would be, and where to switch drivers. Or, plug your destination into your GPS or Mapquest and let technology do all the work for you!
What’s your road trip style? If you want to get there as fast as possible, do what me and my dad did: just keep on going for 17 hours (just don’t forget to take breaks for gas, food, and more soda!). If you’d rather take your time and enjoy what sites America has to offer, by all means plan out your trip so you can stop and see the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls, or battlefields! Especially if it’s your first time in that part of the country, it’s great to see the sites and landmarks so you get a better feel for the area and the people.
Make a playlist. Let everyone who will be in the car with you contribute songs, and compile it all together on your iPod, or on cds if that’s more your style. I recommend making a mix of all music styles and genres so that there’s a little of everything to prevent boredom and keep you jazzed up when you need it and more relaxed when cabin-fever sets in.
Be safe. Especially if you’re driving at night, make sure that you’re alert and not in danger of falling asleep! One great way to beat this is talking to someone, but coffee and loud music help too. If you’re in a rural area, watch out for wildlife or cows crossing the road and tractors on the highway.
Have fun. Stop at that cheesy tourist trap you’ve been seeing billboards for since you crossed the state line (and believe me, once you actually get to South of the Border or to the tiny town sporting the “World’s Largest Prairie Dog,” you’ll want to see it!). Play car bingo. Make a list of all the state license plates you see, and aim for all 50! Bring your camera and take pictures. Sing along to the songs. Listen to a book on tape. This may be your only time driving through these places, so relax and enjoy it!
Are you going on a trip anytime soon?


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One Response to Time to Hit the Road: Tips for a Smooth Trip

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the tips! My family is moving to another state soon and I need all the tips I can get for a smooth journey!

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