The summer months are often a time to kick back, relax, and spend time with loved ones. Road trips have always been a big part of this time of year, and while a spur of the moment road trip may sound like a good idea, eight hours of gridlocked traffic or getting lost will definitely put a damper on things. With a little time and effort, planning a road trip can be almost as fun as the trip itself!
Why road trips rule
Most people have fond memories of going on road trips as children with their parents, even if those memories do include annoying siblings and silly games along the way. But, even with the increase in gas prices, the appeal of road trips is still going strong. Hitting the road on an adventure can give one a sense of freedom and adventure that is just impossible from any other form of travel.
Piling into the car with friends and family can be a lot of fun, especially when the trip is scenic and has lots to experience along the way. Whether it’s a short local trip or a cross-country trek, a road trip can elicit feelings of timelessness and tradition. They are also a great way to learn about the different landscapes and communities along the way.
On the West Coast, a popular road trip route is the Pacific Coast Highway – gorgeous, breathtaking, and relaxed, from Cambria, California to Monterey. It’s a great trip for the fall, since there’s less traffic and the weather is still pleasant. For those hoping for a more inland adventure, the route from Bryce Canyon to Arches National Park in Utah is an excellent option filled with spectacular scenery and can take just a long weekend. The road trip options in the US alone are endless from the Florida Keys to New England or Route 66 and the Blue Ridge Highway – just pick a destination and start planning!
Planning the trip
When preparing to take a road trip, there are some things – like choosing the right vehicle and which route to take – that can make or break the entire experience. It is important to plan the route, but something that many people forget to plan for is to expect the unexpected. Plan some time to be surprised by stops along the way like that giant potato sculpture off that next exit! Use the road trip to stop and enjoy life, the sights, and loved ones. Some other key tips: always use the bathroom when the opportunity presents itself and bring a paper map – sometimes technology can malfunction.
A road trip requires the right car to ensure both fun and function. The right vehicle should be comfortable but also have enough space for passengers, equipment, and luggage. For particularly long road trips, a larger car like an SUV is often a good choice thanks to its elevated seating and expanded interior space – something that is crucial to keeping the peace especially when kids are tagging along! Fuel economy, safety, and performance are also key factors in selecting the best car for a road trip.
Many road trippers today opt for compact SUVs, which provide all the function and luxury of the nicest sedans, but are perfect for all sorts of road trips. Mercedes-Benz has released several SUVs that are built with design, versatility, and technology in mind, making them a great choice for those who spend a lot of time driving or taking long road trips throughout the year. Strong and sturdy, these SUVs handle like cars on even the most rugged of roads thanks to refined aerodynamics that only enhances the handling and comfort of the vehicle. Improved technologies such as radar-equipped cruise control and electronic warning systems (for blind spots) help keep passengers safe along the way.
Remember, road trips come in all shapes and sizes, but the secret to a successful one – one that everyone will remember with a smile – is to plan it out before hitting the road. Picking the right car for the trip plays a huge role in setting the tone for the entire trip. Sure, Mom and Dad might love the idea of a red convertible along the scenic coastal roads, but will the toddlers in the back really enjoy that? The trick is to remember who is going on the trip, where the roads will lead, and how much stuff will be packed in the back!