Your Summer Road Trip Guide

By Kaitlin Hurtado on June 1, 2019

With time for summer break quickly approaching, it is the perfect time to start thinking about how you are going to be spending every part of your summer vacation in order to make the most of it. What better way to spend some time off than a perfectly planned summer road trip? This doesn’t mean that every single second and mile of your summer road trip needs to be planned out, but you do want to put in some effort into planning your summer road trip to make it worth remembering.

If you are considering making a summer road trip this year, here are a few ideas to get you started on planning your favorite summer road trip so far:

girl sticking head out window on road

Image via unsplash.com

Pick the right people for your summer road trip 

You definitely do not want to go through all the effort of planning out the perfect road trip, go on it, only to realize that it’s your soon-to-be nightmare story when all of the people you are with spend the entire time arguing or trying to change what you planned out. Think about how a road trip means spending a lot of time in a closed space with your fellow travelers. Do you want to spend all that time in a small, confined space only to figure out that the people you chose to go on a summer road trip with are not exactly as close as you thought you were?

Picking the friends you want to go on a summer road trip with is kind of like picking what friends you want to become roommates with. While some people could be your very best friends, they will not exactly make the best roommates. The same can be said for picking the right people to go on a summer road trip with. Here are some factors to consider:

  • You have similar desires for the road trip. Think about where you want to venture to during your summer road trip, if you have similar destinations or stops, the road trip can be a lot easier.
  • Experience with traveling. People that have more experience being on the road or traveling tend to make planning a summer road trip and actually going on it a lot easier.
  • Friends that you spend extensive time together so that you know how they can be throughout the trip.

It’s not all about the destination (but also the stops) 

You may think that the entire point of a road trip is picking out the perfect destination, but it’s also the journey that will make a summer road trip worth remembering. Yes, picking out the right destination can be the perfect cherry on top, but try figuring out some stops along the way that could be just as memorable and exciting. This could be anywhere from picking a few hotels to stop and rest, dining locations you have always wanted to try, or landmarks for a quick photo shoot.

Picking out designated stops could also help appease the rest of your friends during your summer road trip. For example, if one or two friends are pretty bummed that their ideal final destination was not picked for the summer road trip, but you can help them be more satisfied with the road trip if they can take part in picking out stops that they really want to go to.

Make your car a second home

During your summer road trip, the car you choose to travel in will become your second home. It’s important to make your car as comfy as possible so that you can enjoy the extensive time spent in your car as much as possible. Packing right for your summer road trip can make your road trip more comfortable, efficient, and cheaper than if you just go on the road without much planning.

If you are looking for some ideas to make your summer road trip car as comfy as can be, here are a few ideas:

  • Get all the food you need. Stop yourself from making unnecessary stops or spending extra money by stocking up on plenty of snacks and some prepped meals. Try to get snacks that everyone will enjoy and that will make both a minimal mess and not depend on refrigeration for the duration of your summer road trip.
  • Bring some comfort items. Bring along items like small pillows and blankets so that napping in the car is much easier – blankets can also help settle arguments when some people feel too cold but others want to blast the air conditioning all the way.
  • Clear it out of things you don’t need, but make sure you are prepared for unexpected situations. Before putting a bunch of stuff in your car to prepare for a summer road trip, take time to clean it out of things you don’t need (trash, extra clothes or bags you’ve collected in your trunk over time) and make room for things you will actually need, like extra water, personal belongings, snacks, flashlights, and so on.

You don’t have to plan your summer road trip down to every turn of the wheel, but put a little effort and thought into your road trip to make it the best summer road trip yet.

By Kaitlin Hurtado

Uloop Writer
Hello! I'm Kaitlin, a fourth year Literary Journalism major at UC Irvine. I'm a writer on Uloop's national team and a campus editor for UCI.

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