How to prepare for a cross-country road trip

cross-country - road tripcross-country - road trip
cross-country - road tripcross-country - road trip


How to prepare for a cross-country road trip

Road trips can be a memorable experience, giving you moments to cherish for a lifetime. It’s an opportunity to see places and meet people from different backgrounds and cultures.

Planning a trip thoroughly is essential, as it ensures a hassle-free trip with no issues. Unplanned trips, on the other hand, can result in travel delays and more. So, to help you avoid any hiccups along the way, below are some helpful travel tips.


Plan before going on the trip

The first thing you should do prior to going on a trip is to make sure you have planned everything perfectly. Although the idea of a spur-of-the-moment decision might seem fun and spontaneous, it’s important to have an idea of what you’ll be doing on the trip.

Think about the number of people who will be travelling with you, and what you would need. Those needs include food, money and accommodation. Whether you’re travelling with friends or family members, it is helpful to have a logistics discussion. This will ensure that if there are any concerns, they are laid out on the table prior to the trip.

If you want your vacation plans to run smoothly, you need to ensure that everything is in order. The last thing you need is to cancel your trip because of minor issues like accommodation which wasn’t sorted before the trip.


Have travel protection cover

When travelling, always think about your safety. It’s a sad reality that many people in South Africa, and all over the world, have lost their lives while on the road. Sometimes things may be out of your control and it’s important to keep that in mind.

As a person who enjoys travelling, it is helpful to have travel cover available to ensure you have peace of mind when you’re on the road. Travel protection cover provides you with comfort, knowing that your family is protected in the event of accidental death.

Your travel insurance cover will cover you and your family should there be any accidental deaths. Although it is hard to talk about it, it is important to keep in mind.


Check to see that your vehicle is roadworthy

When preparing for your trip, you should always check that your vehicle is roadworthy. It’s important to prepare your vehicle for the long distance so that you won’t experience any problems on the road. Having your vehicle stuck on the highway with all your personal belongings is unsafe and can ruin your trip.

The following should be done before travelling with your vehicle:

  • Check your engine oil and coolant levels. If your engine oil is low, it can be an engine leak and cause damage to your car.
  • Inspect the air pressure of your tyres
  • Check each tyre’s condition and make sure you spare with you.
  • Check your air filters. Filters are intended to hinder any harmful debris from entering your car's engine, radiator or fuel lines. Dirty filters decrease performances and might lead to engine damage.
  • Check to see that all your lights are working properly for road visibility.
  • Check your car battery and alternator to ensure they’re healthy.
  • Check to see if your car emergency kit has everything you need.
  • Ensure all your seat belts work well to ensure safety for children and passengers.


Have enough money for emergencies

Always have emergency cash when travelling, whether it is local or international travels. There might be an issue with your car or someone might fall ill and need medical care. Emergency medical treatments and mechanics require money, so to avoid any setbacks, always be prepared for any emergency occurrence.


Have all the necessary documentation

Whenever you are travelling it's important to have all your documents with you. These documents include a valid driver's license and vehicle registration. Having those documents will help should you address any complications or traffic cops on the road.


Travelling essentials

Once all the important essentials have been marked off on your list, it's time to move to the fun part. Make sure you have wipes or toilet paper in your car as you might need it on the road. Pack a bottle of sunscreen – it's a must-have and should be used every single day in order to protect your skin from the sun. Don’t forget to pack in a towel, deodorant, toothpaste and a charger as those can often be easily forgotten. Use the weather for the days you will be travelling as a guideline of the clothing items you pack.

Bring a few snacks for the road so that there won’t be a need to stop every hour. If possible, try and create a playlist for the road and download a map app with GPS navigation, to assist you with directions. Don’t forget to bring a power bank or charger to charge your phone.


Wrapping up

Once all your luggage has been sorted, now is the time where you can relax and have fun. Take a break from your digital devices and spend quality time with your loved ones, remember that you’re on a trip. Vacations don’t need to only be for Instagram post or story, it’s also about you taking a break and enjoying the fresh air and time out.

cross-country - road trip