How to plan the perfect road trip!

Joshua GraceNews

Itching to get back out on or off-road? Perhaps you are new to 4WD’ing! That’s ok, we have you covered with our eight-step guide on how to plan the perfect road trip every time regardless of whether its your first or one hundredth trip!

1. Decide on the destination

Choosing a destination can be done simply through a friend’s story that intrigued you or perhaps you have done a little research and have found a new hot spot that everyone is raving about. It is best to choose a destination that fits the needs and time frame of you and those accompanying you, factor in the travel time and where you can stop when finalising your destination!

2. Research the location you are visiting

After the final decision has been made on where you are travelling to, begin researching the location and its surroundings. Is there anything that interests you and could be newly experienced to enhance your trip? Are there amenities to use while on your trip or will you need take these things with you? There is nothing worse than being caught out and underprepared, so make sure that you put in the time and do your research to ensure you have the best trip possible.

3. Consider your vehicle

Now you have put in the time to see what you have available to you at your destination, does your vehicle have the capacity to take everything you will need that you do not have access to? Some vehicles are not made for long trips. Make sure your vehicle has plenty of storage capacity, especially for those longer road trips and also make sure that there is plenty of room for your passengers since you will be spending a long time in the vehicle. The best way to add carrying space outside of your boot is by installing a roof rack on your car. A roof rack is extremely useful since all the bulky and awkward objects you may be taking can be carried on the roof, allowing extra space in the boot to be better used for things that may need to be accessed quicker and more frequently.

When selecting a roof rack, it is extremely important to consider the weight rating both on-road and off-road. Again, do your research at this point as most roof racks have one weight rating for on-road and then a completely different weight rating when you go off-road. Tradesman Roof Racks however are one brand that have a universal weight rating regardless of whether your trip includes on-road or off-road. This sure saves a headache and is much easier to pack what you need without having to hinder your experience by choosing on-road or off-road, you can do both!

4. Get a tune up

It is always a good idea to make sure that your vehicle is 100% ready for your trip. Getting it serviced will ensure peace of mind for you knowing that it has been meticulously checked for problems and fixed. If you have just had a service not long ago, a simple check of things such as windshield wiper fluids, oil levels, air pressure in your wheels and battery charge can all go a long way to making sure your trip goes well.

5. Plan stops

All good trips need to have stops. Whether it is to get food, see something on the way through or to just simply stretch your legs. It is also important to stop every couple of hours to make sure you stay alert by doing something to break up the constant drive. Again, this comes with research to find out what is along the way, where you can stop and when are the best times. It all adds to the experience of the road trip and keeps the travel time entertaining and exciting.

6. Plan for things that could go wrong

No one wants to think poorly of their trips and experiences, so the best way to avoid this is to plan for things that could go wrong. Planning allows you to take safety precautions and gain awareness of what could go wrong and make sure you have all the answers. For example, if you are going off-road, make sure you have a spare tyre for your spare tyre. One flat is not unusual, but what happens if you have two? Make sure your first aid kit is up to date and that there is plenty of food and water packed. It is always better to expect the unexpected and be prepared, you do not want to have the trip completely ruined from lack of preparation and awareness. Always acknowledge that things can go wrong.

7. Don’t race the clock

Allow plenty of time to travel and do the things you have planned. It is better to leave some activities and sights for the next trip then to be on a time crunch all trip and not experience things for what they are. No one wants to be rushed and it is also a great excuse to go do another trip!

8. Stay up to date

Always make sure that you are up to date with any weather reports and developments and any travel delays or stoppages that could impact your travel time, safety or need for emergency services. Do not travel on assumption, always know what is coming and happening. Be aware.