How to Have a Safe Spring Break Road Trip

Few things in life will give you as much of a rush as heading out on a road trip adventure. Watching through the windshield as the country changes around you is an experience that’s tough to put into words, but a feeling many have enjoyed and continue to chase.

While it’s easy to enjoy a road trip any time of year, arguably the best time to hit the open road is the beginning of spring. The beautiful scenes of blooming nature provide a luxurious backdrop as you cruise through the countryside, traveling from city to city. Many students or families with kids in school will use spring break as an opportunity to plan a road trip, as it’s the perfect match between ideal weather and time off from obligations.

Heading out on a road trip isn’t as simple as grabbing your keys and sliding behind the wheel, though. There are several things you need to consider in order to prepare yourself for what lies ahead. Continue reading for road trip safety tips and other spring break road trip ideas.

Before You Leave

The process of making sure your spring break road trip goes smoothly starts before you even turn on the engine. In the days leading up to your trip, clean out your car, fill up your gas tank, and take care of any spring car maintenance you’ve been putting off such as an oil change or filter replacement. You’ll also want to make sure to get plenty of sleep the night before you leave, as having a clear and well-rested mind is vital to ensuring you have a successful trip.

A car sits by a gas pump filling up on a nice spring day

Plan Ahead

The biggest and boldest thing written on your road trip safety checklist should be to plan ahead. Begin by examining your route ahead of time and tailoring it to your desires, as many people choose to avoid major cities or go out of their way to visit interesting landmarks. You should also look for rest stops and food spots along your intended path, as that’ll give you something to look forward to. Being prepared will guarantee your trip is not only safe but as enjoyable as possible.

Smartly Pack Your Car

 Before your trip, make a list of all the things you need to pack. In addition to the stuff you’ll be using once you reach your destination, there are some things you should consider taking along for the car. Buy snacks, drinks, and other road trip supplies ahead of time to cut down on food stops and avoid extra costs. Pack ample water bottles, either reusable or recyclable, as you must stay adequately hydrated. If you’re traveling with kids, make sure their electronics and snacks are set up and easily accessible ahead of time to avoid stressful situations when driving.

Adapt When Needed

Proper preparation is key, but you also need to be ready for situations to pop up on the road that you can’t plan for. To avoid hitting traffic, download an app like Waze that alerts you to upcoming accidents, delays, and speed traps and presents detour options. You should check the forecast for inclement weather ahead of time, but if you’re suddenly caught off guard by extreme conditions, slow down or pull off the road until it passes. Spills and bathroom breaks can be managed as time allows, though major car troubles or stomach issues can stop you altogether.

Many cars sit stopped in standstill traffic

Stay Engaged

Maybe the most important part of maintaining road trip safety is making sure the driver is alert and engaged at all times. Keeping up the conversation between passengers will keep the gears in your brain turning, even if you have to resort to playing road trip games like “I Spy.” If you’re driving alone or with sleeping passengers, put on music, a podcast, or an audiobook. Caffeine can help, but make sure to drink extra water to stay hydrated. If you have multiple drivers in the car, regularly swap who’s behind the wheel to give your brain and eyes as much rest as possible.

Schedule Your Diagnosis With Kennedy Transmission

As a whole, the biggest thing to remember when setting off on a spring break road trip is to stay prepared and mentally vigilant. Take the time before your trip to get your car cleaned and packed, then plan an itinerary for where you’ll be stopping and what cities you’ll be passing through. Once you’re driving, stay awake and aware of your surroundings, both in the car and on the road around you.

Once you’ve prepared yourself for your spring road trip, make sure your vehicle is ready to hit the road with Kennedy Transmission, Brake, and Auto Service. We operate auto shops in Minnesota with locations in Minneapolis, Apple Valley, Bloomington, Forest Lake, Plymouth, Shakopee, and Waite Park. Read more about our automotive services and reach out today to schedule your automotive diagnostic service.

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