Important Tips for Long Drives: How to Plan the Perfect Road Trip

Do you want to know how to plan the perfect road trip? It can be overwhelming. And, you want to make sure that your trip will be enjoyable for everyone along for the ride. So, get started with these important tips for long drives to ensure you have a fun road trip. You’ll be happily on your way in no time!

how to plan the perfect road trip

CONTENTS – In this article, you will learn tips for long drives that will make your road trip enjoyable including: 

You’ve Packed For The Road Trip – But How Can You Make It Enjoyable?

Family road trips are cost-effective, convenient, and adventurous experiences. It’s a wonder why we don’t schedule them more often. 

Of course, during the pandemic, you might have started to focus on alternatives to international and airline travel, like: 

  • Choosing a different means of transportation and accommodations
  • Charting your own fun, such as heading outside camping rather than booking a hotel
  • Taking trips to local events and domestic destinations instead of going abroad
  • Planning staycations and improving your home environment

You may have even found the value in keeping things local and humble to that extent. The road trip, in itself, can serve as the ultimate foundation of this. 

If you’ve become enamored with road trips and want to take them more often, it’s easier than you might think. For instance, you might consider:

  • Justifying a visit to your extended family more frequently
  • Finally checking out those landmarks you’ve missed
  • Just getting out in nature more

What kind of plans and investments should you make ahead of time to plan the perfect road trip? It’s a worthwhile question to ask.

In this guide, we’ll discuss four ways to perfect this experience and possibly even make it an experience you enjoy several times in the year. After all, it’s easy enough to just pick up and go for the weekend. 

This way, driving to a vacation destination may even be more comfortable than before. Here’s how you can get started.

The Perfect Road Trip: Equipping Before The Journey

Of course, a vehicle is best prepared before the start of your journey.

To start off on the right foot, you’ll want to make sure that you’ve filled your car’s gas tank up with fuel before you set off.

If you have an electric or hybrid car, you can contact a quality outfit like Tesla Powerwall dealers to install a charging station in your home. That way, you’re ready to go in a moment’s notice with your car fully charged.

Other steps to take to get set up before the journey include making sure:

  • The tire pressure is correct
  • Your car is cleaned
  • Luggage is properly organized in the top-box and the trunk
  • Everyone is seated comfortably (this can work wonders during your drive!) 

You’ll also find that equipping your interior with refreshments can be key. Find out more about packing the best road trip snacks here.

So can making sure that certain provisions, such as small travel pillows that can be fitted against the top of the seatbelt, can work in case someone needs a nap.

The more comfortable your vehicle is to occupy, the better your trip will be.

These things will help road trips feel less like chores and more like peaceful journeys. 

Of course, some people combine pleasure and comfort by purchasing or renting a larger vehicle such as an RV or Volkswagon bus. The options are limitless.

Related Article: Follow this essential checklist for your RV trip.

Tips for Long Drives: Planning Your Routes

It’s a great idea to plan the routes you take when scheduling a road trip. 

This is because road trips are not supposed to only take place in a vehicle. We must allot time each day for us to explore, spend some time in recreation, and truly fulfill our day. 

Better a longer road trip broken up into driving segments than a massive drive over hundreds of miles. Set realistic expectations.

For instance, if you travel from family member to family member, hoping to meet two different households in one day, you’re setting yourself up for unnecessary stress.

Also, road trips are quicker on the highway, but more enjoyable on local roads. 

Here are some of the benefits for traveling off highway:

  • See more of the local environment
  • Travel closer to natural settings and nature
  • See more attractions along the way
  • Get a taste for the local culture
  • Stop off in cheaper hotels
  • Eat better food 

You’re also much less likely to encounter a road traffic accident provided you use your GPS to avoid traffic routes and other issues.


It can’t hurt to get semi-lost around a town once in a while, too. Provided you put on your GPS when needed, it’s never a permanent issue. Plus, you can always ask a local for directions and recommendations.

Have A Purpose For Each Ride

It’s a good idea to have a purpose for your road trip, and to make each experience a little different than the last. That makes it all the easier to plan the perfect road trip since you have clear goals.

Here’s an example.

Perhaps this time, you want to try all the best restaurants along the coast, visiting six restaurants that are world-renowned. This would be a great means to celebrate your son just being accepted into culinary school.

Or, perhaps you’d like to travel to see your family after two years of semi-lockdowns have made that kind of logistical effort more difficult. 

Another example is as wine-lovers, to end each day at a different vineyard or winery along the route.

No matter your reason, having a purpose for the trip allows you to plan different stops along the way. That way, you’ll enjoy the whole process with much more clarity from start to finish and back again.

Related Article: Gorgeous Road Trips in New England

Safety Concerns and Other Tips for Long Drives

It’s good to focus on safety when it comes to regular road trips. 

That includes that you: 

  • Take regular driving breaks
  • Fasten all the seat belts and child safety seats
  • Service your vehicle so it is in good condition
  • Enroll in a roadside assistance service
  • Pack a first aid kit 

The more you think about safety ahead of time, the better off you’ll feel, and the less distracted you’ll feel on the roads.

Sometimes, a safety concern can involve knowing when you’re burned out from driving and need an extra day to rest.

It’s also important to dress comfortably for a road trip. Otherwise, you might find yourself feeling cranky for no apparent reason.

Staying realistic about the whole endeavor is the best policy.

Final Thoughts on These Tips for Long Drives

With these important tips for long drives, you now know how to plan the perfect family road trip. Hopefully, it will be one of many more to come! 

If you’re looking for more in-depth details, continue reading more road trip essentials to help you prepare and plan your drive.

Photo credits: feature – Dominika Roseclay (Pexels),  Автошкола ТЕХНИКА (Pixabay)

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Jackie Gately

Jackie Gately is a seasoned travel writer, photographer, and marketing consultant who is passionate about travel. She loves casual-luxury experiences, coastal getaways, cultural attractions, and local, wholesome food and wine pairings. A perfect day ends with her toes in the sand or by chasing the sunset with her camera--ideally both.