When it comes to celebrating America, there is no better way than to venture into the country and explore its majestic beauty. Come summertime and the open road beckons the adventurer within us to take an epic road trip. The freedom of the open road can be really intoxicating especially for us folks; going wherever we want and experiencing Americana up close. It’s something that we couldn’t enjoy to the fullest before; family, kids and jobs got in the way. But now we can be as free as the country we love.
Hitting the road on our own after crossing 50 is nothing short of an adventure with both ups and downs.
Before embarking on this adventure, we want smart travelers like us to be prepared. After all, we don’t want the Boomer Generation to fizz out on the road. Here are some tips that will help in planning the best cross-country trip of your life.
Pick the Right Company
On your trip there will be long stretches of driving and being on the road. You don’t want anyone who isn’t responsible, is a downer or annoying as hell. You know who your people are, so select your company for the trip wisely. Otherwise, the experience can be quite painful.
Plan the Trip on a Map
You’ll have some destinations in mind that you want to see like the Rockies, the Grand Canyon, Reno, Miami, New Orleans or the Great Salt Lake. Make a list of these places and use it as a starting point to plan your route on a map. This will also help you in booking accommodations ahead of time. The Airbnb app will be your friend for this.
Plan Your Budget
Your budget will be the deciding factor for where you are going to eat, sleep and spend time. Plan your budget ahead of time to curb costs so that you don’t have to worry during your vacation. If you’re smart, a trip can cost you less than $1,500. One way to save money is to rent a new car – that way you won’t have to worry about the mileage or the car breaking down. Look out for deals from companies like Avis and Budget to save more. For gas, having a gas card is recommended. Refueling on the road will result in reward points and discounts that can be of great help during the trip.
Accommodation and food are your other big expense. Use Airbnb for locations that are hard to get accommodations in, but otherwise stay at local hotels that give breakfast. You can depend on the cafes and diners on the Interstate Highway but that’s not something you can do all the time. So, if you aren’t up the adventure of finding off the road local culinary haunts be sure to pack some options, fruits and sandwiches using supplies from local grocers. It’ll be cheaper and healthier too.
Have a Good Time
This is easier said than done but you need to make sure that you are okay with being in the car for long stretches of time. Have a co-pilot to give you company while navigating. After all, it’s the company that makes the trip. Make small recordings of the places you’re going. Use the Roadside America app to find out about both prominent and off-beat attractions on your route. Make memories and buy souvenirs. Whatever you do to memorialize your trip, make sure you aren’t breaking the law while doing it. Happy Travels!