Traveling by car can be a great way to see the Country. You can stop when you want and take any route you want. You are not restricted by rules, as you would be at the airport. But there are also some downsides to this form of travel, and if you try to anticipate problems before they happen, then you will enjoy your trip even more.
When on that road trip, and you are taking your kids, then you know the first thing to happen will be boredom.
You have to decide before you go on your trip, just what is realistic for car travel. If you have young children, then you cannot expect them to sit in a car for hours and hours. Even with bathroom breaks, they will need to burn off some steam, so you will need to allow more time for travel with younger children.
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Maintain Your Car
If you are going to take that road trip, you will also need to make sure your car is in good shape. You don't want to be dealing with major issues while on the road if you can help it. Depending on how long your trip is, you should get any safety items dealt with first, such as new tires, fan belts, oil changes, and new brakes if you need them. If your brakes are showing signs of wear now, for 800 miles will definitely wear them out. So be proactive with your car.
Don't overload the car. If you are expecting to drive for hours or days, an overloaded car not only will be hard on the car but on you every time you stop at a hotel or motel along the way, you need to be able to unpack fairly quickly and find anything you are looking for.
You can do laundry along the way, many hotels and campgrounds even offer washer and dryer service. Just make sure you have something for if it is cooler, then you can wear the same weight of clothing and just add one sweater or rain jacket if the weather turns. This makes packing easier, if you are packing mostly lightweight shirts and tops etc. as they take up less room.
Make sure you have paid off or cleared off most of the balance on your credit card while on that road trip. Nothing worse than needing a hotel and the credit card will not work. Remember that hotels and motels will take some extra until you check out, but it can take up to 48 hours for it to be put back. Example: If you paid 100 dollars for a night, the hotel make take 250 dollars of your credit limit until they have checked the room, to make sure you have not trashed it or run off with the towels! Then they will return it to the 100 dollars. If you have not got enough room on your credit card, this will affect you either for the room, or any other purchases you try and make that day and the next.
So, make sure you have plenty of room on your credit card.
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AAA or CAA when traveling by car
If you belong to any associations, then visit their office before you go, and get free maps and tour books of the area you are looking to travel in. This is a great time saver and can help you plan your trip before you head out. You can find out hotels and motels that allow pets and whether they have pools and activities for the kids. So visit one of these offices before you go.
If you are already on the road, you can visit one of these offices in any town for help with your trip or planning your trip. They will also have discounted tickets for amusement parks and larger parks that could save you some money, so check them out before you go on your vacation.
If you heading out by car, it is nice to have a second driver. You may not like the idea of being a passenger, but it can be a long trip, and you can get fatigued. You need to stop for breaks, and you need to change drivers.
Make sure you have more than enough medications for yourself and your family,. There is a higher chance that you could be delayed, with such things as traffic jams, car breakdowns, illnesses and more. Or maybe you have just seen a sign for a site you really want to take a side trip to see. If you take more than you need in medications then you will be prepared and can do spontaneous activities.