Road trips have seen a huge increase in popularity in the last few years.

They are a great way to travel because you can make more of the journey as opposed to focusing on the destination. A road trip also tends to be less expensive than flying for the most part, and it offers you more autonomy too. However, planning a road trip can be a little bit stressful, which is why we have put together the following guide to planning a road trip. Keep reading for more. 

Planning Tips

Some people don’t like to plan their road trips out too thoroughly; they like the flexibility. Other people like to plan things out in detail. Ideally, you should try to fall somewhere in the middle, with flexibility built into your plan. First things first, you obviously need to start with the destination. You can then begin to work backwards to find stops that you want to make along the way. 

Young women planing holiday, sat with map, hat, sunglasses and ipad

It also makes sense to factor in the time of year that you are planning your trip; if you are going during the tourist season, then you might struggle with last-minute bookings, so be sure to make them ahead of time. When planning your trip, you might also want to think about where you are going to stop for fuel or find your nearest charge point if you are driving an electric vehicle. ElectriX has a list of all of the charging points throughout the UK. 

Packing the Car 

The next thing to think about when planning your road trip is what you are going to pack in the car. Now, the specifics will likely vary depending on how long your road trip is, where you are heading, and the size of the car or how much space you have. It makes sense to include an emergency kit in your car just in case you break down or run into trouble. 

Blue car with boot fullof luggage for road trip

After you have packed the emergency kit, it is time to think about the essentials. This usually means the things that you will need on your journey as well as when you reach your destination. These tend to be things like clothes, toiletries and any medications needed. They will likely be the biggest bags to pack, which is why you should do them first. Most people will have a boot big enough to house these things easily. 

Lastly, you can start to think about the things that you will need for the journey. For the most part, these tend to be comfort items. They might include things that cater to your physical or mental comfort during the trip, like blankets, pillows, books or devices to keep you entertained or food and drinks. 

Money-Saving Tips

Travelling by car is often one of the more cost-friendly ways to travel anyway, but there are a few things that you can do to ensure that costs are kept as low as possible. Firstly, unless you have a deadline for your destination in that you are going for something specific, if you choose to travel in off-peak times, then you can often find better deals on attractions or accommodation.

Women sat on car with tent on roof, parked in woodland

Next, as mentioned above, snacks are absolutely non-negotiable on a road trip. It is also a lot cheaper to pack your own snacks than it is to make stops along the way. Motorway services are notoriously expensive, and repeated stops along the way at fast food restaurants add time and money to your trip. Do your best to pack snacks at home; you could even pack a cooler if you wanted to include food that could spoil. 

Plan your stops in advance and try to work out the best route to increase your fuel efficiency. A road trip often walks the line between the most practical route and the scenic route. However, remember that when driving on a motorway, your car often becomes more fuel efficient, which can save you money when paying for petrol or needing to charge your vehicle. 

You could also choose to give car camping a go. Obviously, this is not going to work for everyone, especially if you are travelling with a bigger group or children. However, if there are only a couple of you and you have room in the car to do so, you could try car camping. It would save you a lot of money, especially if you are planning a longer road trip. 

In Summary

Road trips are a great way to travel; you can often stumble across a few hidden gems along the way, as well as save money. They are also often more relaxed too because you are working to your own schedule and itinerary as opposed to anyone else. When it comes to planning a road trip, there are several things that you need to think about. Think about where you want to end up and how long you have to get there. This will help you to work out the best route that maximises your enjoyment.