Van Life

A young adults guide to planning a road trip

Devising a road trip as a young adult can be overwhelming and time-consuming, especially if there is more than one person involved. Whether you’re planning this as a celebratory trip after graduating college, honoring a specific career milestone, or breaking away from your day-to-day routine— road trips are the best way to explore new places, view unfamiliar sceneries and ultimately enjoy yourself. Before outlining your itinerary, read these helpful tips and tricks for a successful adventure.

Choose your destinations

Determining your destination points is the detail you want to prioritize first. This is very important and can make or break your road trip. If there are specific cities, beaches, or monuments you are looking to visit, choose a route that will lead you to each one. Take things like if you’re planning to drive on major highways or are opting to take the backroads into consideration. Remember, taking the road less traveled could be a risk that leads you to unforgettable experiences that you could have missed— so don’t be afraid to be spontaneous!

Book your accommodations

After deciding on your stops, it is time to make reservations for a variety of things— the places you want to stay, the car you want to rent, or the flight you want to take. For accommodations, an Airbnb, hotel, or bed and breakfast are great options, but if you’re looking to save as much money as possible, car-camping or pitching a tent under the stars is another fantastic alternative too! If you plan to fly to a specific destination and rent a car, make sure it’s one that is suitable for the weather conditions and length of the road trip.

Always look for ways to save money

As a young adult, you may have a much smaller disposable income, but you’d be surprised at how much you can save. Before beginning your expedition, look into your current budget and what you are spending money on. Cut out all unnecessary costs by unsubscribing to streaming services, spending less on clothing and luxury items, limiting your credit card usage, and even look into refinancing to lower the cost of your college loan. You could add hundreds to your trip’s budget simply by evaluating your expenses.

Prepare your vehicle

Your car or RV Rental is the power behind getting you from place to place, which means it needs to be in good condition and prepared for every kind of weather. As you’re driving, you may endure a random rain storm, an icy road warning, snow shower or an intense band of fog. You truly never know, so it’s important to inspect your car to be safe.

Pack light

Due to limited vehicle space, it is imperative for you and your guest(s) to be frugal when packing for your journey. This can conserve additional space for food, pillows and blankets, a tent or any other items you think you’ll need. Instead of using a suitcase, pack your clothing and shoes in a duffle bag. Duffle bugs are flexible and can smoosh into small spaces better than a bag that has shape.

Create a driving playlist

A road trip isn’t exceptional without a good driving playlist! Depending on your favorite music genre, compile a list of songs together that you can bop to. When you’re driving for long hours, it’s easy for your mind to become drained and tired. With an energetic, upbeat playlist, you’ll want to roll the windows down and sing your heart out at any time.

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