Going on road trips has been an American tradition for a long time - whether it's a couple hours to a big city, or a cross country road trip with no destination. This article will show you how you can take a road trip with all of your friends.
This article presumes you're taking a road trip in the USA, but some of the aspects could be applicable to other countries where road trips are also a tradition.
Part 1 of 4:Basic Planning
1Figure out why you want to go on a road trip, and make sure it's a good reason. Road trips take a lot of planning, time, and money. But, with a good reason to go, nothing is stopping you!
If you're taking a big road trip, it could be around 1 to 3 months. Reasons people go on these long trips include trying to find yourself, getting out of your comfort zone, having fun with your friends, or just traveling the USA before you can't. All are very good reasons.
2Decide who's coming. Make a list of people who are eligible to you to come on the road trip. Ask those people about the trip once you're done. (Hint: it's easier to do this at least a year ahead of time so they have time to respond). However, there are things you will want to keep in mind:
Can you trust the people you want to come with? Furthermore, make sure you know these people and know them. It might not be good to invite strangers.
Will these people be able to contribute anything on the road trip?
Will they want to do anything? Chances are, you're going to be driving a long time, then walking around, visiting the sights to see. If they can't handle that, they might be dead weight on the trip.
Do these people have money they can contribute for gas, food, hotels, and things for themselves?
Will they be able to handle the time they'll be away from home?
Will they complain a lot like children when in the car for hours at a time? (To make sure this isn't an issue, see if they have experience being in a car for hours at a time.)
If they are underage, will they have permission from parents or guardian?
3Plan your destinations, if you have any. Sometimes you go on a road trip without destinations. But if you like to plan things, list all the places in your country that you want to drive to. Do you want to go to Chicago? New York City? Las Vegas? Write down these places somewhere. You can even mark them on a map.
4Cut places if you need to. You need to consider how long your trip is going to be, and if you really need to go to some places you write down. To do this, consider all the things you can do there. If there's tons of things to do and everyone wants to go, don't cut that place. However, if there's not much to do there, and nobody really wants to go, take it out of your road trip.
Almost every city you go to will have museums, art galleries, and gardens. Consider places with national memorials (like the 9/11 memorial in New York), natural phenomenon (Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, etc), or iconic monuments (Space Needle in Seattle).
Also consider the places your friends want to go, so they can be happy too.
Spend only 2 to 4 days at each destination, so you can keep the trip going and make it short as possible.
5Think of the type of transportation you'll take. Will you take someone's car? Will you pay for other transportation? Are you going to take a bus? Whatever you take, be sure it has enough room for everyone coming. Also keep in mind how much gas you'll be using.
If you take a car, make sure you have enough room for luggage and everyone coming. Figure out who's you're going to take as well.
If you pay for city buses or taxis, know where they are taking you and how much it will cost to ride. Although you might think you're saving money on gas, you might not be.
If you decide to buy a bus, consider remodeling in it and putting furniture in it. You can also put entertainment in it of some sort. A bus might be your best option, since they have lots of room ad people won't feel so cramped. You can even buy some with TVs, tables, passenger seats, and a back luggage area. You can also decorate the inside of the bus to make it pretty.
6Know where you're going to sleep. Make sure you have enough money for hotels and motels, but there are other options.
Find campsites along the way. You can pull out sleeping bags and tents and sleep under the stars, or sleep in your vehicle. (There's more room in a bus to do that).
Find a Walmart parking lot to sleep in. They don't make you leave, and there's bathrooms and restaurants inside.
Find Hostels. People prefer these because they feel homier and cost less.
If you're still doing hotels, try to find a branch that has a point system. When you stay at their hotels long enough, you can earn enough points to earn a free night.
7Plan what you'll do for food. It's bad to eat out all the way, because it's unhealthy and pricey. Instead, pack food or things to make food. This will keep everyone happy, and the trip shorter from not having to stop as much.
8Make sure there's as stations where you're going. If there's not going to be gas stations when you need them, then consider taking gas with you.
Make sure everyone chips in for gas.
9Plan out who's gonna be driving when. Take turns driving so you can sleep, socialize, etc. It's also unhealthy to drive the whole way without getting any rest.
10Raise money. Get a job or two to raise money for you trip. Get others to do the same.
Try to raise $200-$300 for every destination. You may not need that much, but it's better to have too much than too little.
11Make sure you're allowed to go on the trip. If you're underage, get permission from your parents/guardians. If you have a job, get permission from your boss. If he/she says no, you may have to quit your job entirely. Make sure you're dedicated to this trip enough to do that.
To convince them, make sure you have enough money, know where you're going, and who's coming. This will make you seem more responsible.
Part 2 of 4:Before the trip
1Make sure you've booked everything you need to book. Be prepared.
2Pack the bare essentials. You may not have enough room to pack everything, but pack everything that you'll need.
3Plan a meet at someone's house. Have parents or others drop off your friends at whatever house has the mode of transportation. You can pack up the vehicle and leave the next morning.
4Get a backpack or small bag to put stuff you'll use along the trip in, so you're not bored. Things you can put in the backpack include:
Brush (if you feel the need to brush your hair along the way or the morning of the trip)
Snacks for yourself.
5Fill a cooler with food that needs to be kept cold, and a box for pantry items. That way, you'll be able to snack anytime on the road.
6Put out the outfit you're going to wear the morning of the trip, or sleep in it.
7Make a giant playlist of songs to listen on the road. You can put them on CDs, or make a playlist on an electronic. Get your friends to make them too.
8Double-check to make sure everything is in order. Make sure you didn't forget anything important! This can affect your road trip negatively.
9Go to bed at a decent hour the night before the trip. You'll be excited and it'll be hard to fall asleep, but you need to be well-rested in order to enjoy the ride and the destinations.
Part 3 of 4:The Morning of the Trip
1Wake up early at about 5 or 6 AM so you can get to your first destination sooner, and do more things. It sounds too early, but you'll be so excited to get up and head on your journey, and won't be so bad.
2Pack your vehicle of everything it needs. But put your backpack on your seat. If you have a pillow or a blanket, put it on your seat as well.
3Triple-check everything. Did you pack everything you needed? Is the food in the cooler and box? Is everyone here and ready to go? Do you have money? Your music? If yes, then you're ready to head off!
Part 4 of 4:On the Road
1Engage in conversation. Road trips are when you really get to know people, so talk! come up with ice breakers and would you rather questions. Talk about deep topics and memories you've had, and the road trip!
2Play lots of music. If you're not talking, play music and sing or dance along. It's fun, and you get to know what kind of music people like.
3Watch a movie if your vehicle has a TV. It kills time and makes the hours fly by. But don't watch movies the entire trip. Talk to your friends. It's also not fair to the driver.
4Make memories. Have lots of fun, and remember them forever. Bring a camera to capture these memories.