Preparing for a Cross Country Drive

car on the road
  • Plan to ensure a successful cross-country road trip: use route planners, check the weather forecast, and maintain your vehicle.
  • Stocking up on snacks, water, and entertainment can make for a more enjoyable journey.
  • Ensure that the battery charge level is adequate and have extra fuel if traveling through remote areas.
  • With proper preparation, travelers can hit the open road with confidence! 
  • Enjoy your journey stress-free, and make sure to take precautions for safe travels.

While tourism was plummeting, 84 percent of Americans felt safe and secure taking a road trip in their vehicles in 2021. Even with the uncertainty surrounding international travel at the time, people still wanted to find an escape from their routines and enjoy nature – something that only driving could provide them. As for commercial flights? Not so much; just 29 percent were comfortable hopping on board one due to pandemic-related concerns.

If you plan an upcoming cross-country road trip, you will likely feel excited about the adventure ahead. There’s nothing quite like getting behind the wheel and hitting the open highway with all its possibilities. But, before you embark on your journey, you should take a few steps to ensure that your drive is as safe and enjoyable as possible — especially if it’s your first time. Here are some of the most critical preparations to hit the road with peace of mind.

Driver pressing on the controls of a route planning app.

Planning Your Route

Making a plan before you go is essential to any successful road trip. You need to determine where you want to stop, how long each leg of your journey will be, and which roads will get you there in the most efficient way possible.

Route Planning App

To do this, consider using a route planning app like Waze or Google Maps that can help you find alternate routes in case of traffic or construction delays. Most route planners also allow users to save multiple routes for easy access during their travels.

Weather Forecast

Additionally, make sure you check the weather forecast for each day of your trip so that you can plan accordingly. It’s also wise to research the areas where you’ll be traveling and read up on any potential road closures or conditions that may affect your journey. Finally, ensure you have everything planned before hitting the open road—that way, you can enjoy your trip stress-free.

Vehicle Maintenance

Ensuring your car is ready for a long-distance drive is key to a positive experience on the road. Check oil and tire pressure before leaving home; these are two of the most essential maintenance items for vehicle safety and performance.

Battery Check

Also, if your car has been idle for more than two weeks, check the battery charge level; if necessary, consider investing in a battery charger to get you going again without any issues.

Emergency Kit

Also, remember to bring an emergency kit with items like flares and roadside assistance numbers just in case something goes wrong while on the route. Regular maintenance is critical to having a reliable vehicle, so make sure to have it serviced periodically and follow the manufacturer’s directions for proper care. Taking the time now will save you time and money on the road.

Fuel Supply

Finally, don’t forget to top off your fuel supply before leaving; this will make sure that you don’t run out of gas in the middle of nowhere. Keeping some extra fuel on hand is also a good idea if traveling through remote areas with limited services. In this situation, you should also consider getting a durable gasoline transfer tank to ensure you have enough fuel for the trip. The tank should also feature an accessible fuel filter and lockable gas cap.

Stocking Up On Supplies

No matter how long your cross-country drive will be, packing supplies can help make it much more enjoyable — especially if you’re traveling alone or with another person (or two).

Young woman biting an energy bar.

Pack Snacks

Consider bringing snacks such as energy bars or trail mix; they’ll provide healthy fuel throughout the day while saving money at gas station stops along the way. Bring plenty of water, too; staying hydrated will help keep the fatigue at bay during those long drives between destinations!

Good Playlist

Don’t forget a good playlist of tunes or podcast episodes — entertainment can be one of the best ways to pass the time during extended periods on the road (especially when there’s no one around).

Preparing for a cross-country drive doesn’t have to be difficult — but it does require some forethought and planning! By taking extra precautions before getting behind the wheel — from stocking up on supplies to checking vehicle maintenance — travelers can relax knowing they’re prepared for whatever their journey may bring them. So pack up those bags and hit that open highway with confidence! With careful preparation, your cross-country drive will be one of your best adventures ever!

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