How to Plan a Road Trip

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The good ol’ road trips. One of the classic ways to travel. Solo or in groups, it can be fun, entertaining, educational, adventurous. Whatever you make of it.

However, just because you are about to have tons of fun, doesn’t mean you don’t have to prepare for what’s coming up. There are some basic items you have to add to your survival list.

Snacks and music are just the beginning. That’s why we came up with a list to help you on your next road trip. Check it out.


The car

If you are about to hit the road, you have to make sure everything is in order with your car. This is non-negotiable.

Before your road trip, make sure all the fluids are ready to go, check your breaks, test your battery, see if your lights are working properly, and don’t forget to give your tires some love.

The more you prepare and double-check, the higher are the chances you will have a smooth ride and a wonderful time.



One of the best thing about road trips is how unpredictable things are, but that might also be the most challenging part. This is why you should always be ready for any situation.

Your phone can be your best friend on a road trip. It provides entertainment and it can save your life if you need to call somebody or simply check where exactly you are.

Therefore, on the night before your road trip, double-check if you are properly charging all your electronic devices. Phones, tablets, computers, cameras, and anything else you’re bringing with you.

You should also charge one or two extra power banks, in case you run out of battery in the middle of nowhere. This extra energy is really important for your devices and for you, which takes us to our next topic.




Drinks and snacks are essential for any road trip but even more important if you are driving for hours. It’s okay to grab some junk food but don’t forget to bring something healthy.

Water is a very obvious choice. If you have a cooler where you can store several gallons at your desired temperature, that’s even better. Always keep in mind that, in case you have to stop to change tires or to wait for help, having enough water with you makes all the difference.


“Fully loaded we got snacks and supplies.”

— Road Trippin’, Red Hot Chili Peppers (1999)


An insulated bag for fruits is also really important. Apples, bananas, grapes, and any other fruit you like can be a game-changer in a road trip when you are really hungry but can’t stop for a meal.

You should also bring carrots, a homemade peanut butter sandwich, energy bars, different types of nuts, oatmeal cookies, beef jerky, and trail mix bags. Just avoid dairy and other kinds of food that need refrigeration, so you can eat anything and any time.

Maintaining a survivalist mentality is really important. So one day before returning home from your road trip, stop by a local grocery store and load your car with water and food for the way back. 



Music on a road trip is vital. It might be taken for granted while you are listening to it, but try to pause the current song, and you will see how empty the atmosphere becomes.

You don’t have to blast it through the speakers. Just keep the volume loud enough so everybody can hear it and be able to talk to each other at the same time.

Ideally, your playlist contains songs that most, if not all, people in the car not only recognize but can also sing. It makes your road trip more fun and enjoyable for everybody.

Choose two or three music genres that are compatible with everybody’s preferences and then pick hit songs from that category. This might not be the best time to present new songs they’ve never heard of.

In apps like Spotify or Apple Music, you can find a plethora of playlists created specifically for road trips. If you need to save data, make sure you download them at home first so you can listen offline.

If you know a podcast that is really funny, you may also try that. It will be like watching a stand-up comedian in your car. However, make sure everybody is actually enjoying the show.

Don’t forget to pick playlists for the way back home. Some people don’t usually sing or talk much on the last day of a road trip. They might be tired and even sleepy. If they all pass out, the driver might need some entertainment on the road.

For solo travelers, you can also download an app with guided tours based on your location. Once the app knows where you are, it will tell a story or fun fact about the area you are driving through. Make sure to charge your phone while using these kinds of apps.




Another great idea for your road trip plan is to come up with games so everybody can interact with each other. Here is a list with some suggestions you may try.

1. Explain a Movie Plot Badly

If you are traveling with movie lovers, this one can be quite challenging and fun. Try to make it accurate but funny, using famous titles so everybody can take a stab.

2. Song Shuffle

When choosing a playlist for your road trip, make sure to include one with very famous hits from different decades. If all travelers in the car are around the same age, including top songs from childhood times can be extra fun.

3. Random Rule

This one can get really crazy. The idea is to come up with an extremely random rule for specific situations and have the entire group follow it. Example: The first time you spot any animal, everybody screams its name; Every time you pass by a truck, ask the driver to honk. 


Stop anywhere you want

The beauty of a road tripis the freedom you have to basically stop anywhere you want. If you’re taking a route for the first time, there might be tons of good surprises ahead of you.

Be aware of what’s around you and, if you have time, don’t let a unique opportunity pass by. Saw a couple of cute deers? Stop for a photo. Spotted a good-looking vintage diner? Time for a milkshake and fries. 

These random occurrences can enrich your trip and make it even more memorable, so always be ready to change plans. After all, your destination is not going anywhere. If you didn’t see everything you wanted, you can always use that as an excuse for another road trip.


Now that you are ready, it’s time to hit the road.


That’s all folks! Stay tuned for our next publiCATTions.


Photos: Unsplash


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