A Road Trip may be just what the doctor ordered.
US travel information is important to note when you are getting ready for a road trip through the United States. Let’s go over some of these helpful trip lessons and the information we’ve learned during our two trips from California to New York and back.
Our first trip across the United States was 30 days long, we planned our entire trip, to include hotels, excursions, time of arrival at certain points of interest and of course, letting friends and family know we will be visiting, which turned into some free stays at their homes. This trip was in 2010.
Our second road trip across the United States was in 2012, and was 21 days long, and we decided to wing it, and just get in the SUV and roll out.
Both trips had their good and bad experiences.
We did find 3 very helpful lessons while traveling across the United States that would have made the trips almost flawless, and we are going to share those 3 road trip lessons with you.
3 Road Trip Lessons While We Planned Our Family Vacation
On our first planned trip, we bought along a chest full of ice, which needed to be refilled often, and in that chest, was sandwich meat, cheeses, and of course in a basket we carried bread and all the condiments needed to make a sandwich while stopping at a picnic area to have lunch. What we noticed was that we only wanted to stop in historic landmarks or parks off the highways . Stopping at a rest stop along the major highways was, let’s just say, blah. I mean, we are on a trip of a lifetime, who wants to eat near a restroom off the freeways and highways.
We ended up eating at a good park in a town called Custer South Dakota, and it was a neat western town and the park was nice. But that was the extent of our dining out at a picnic area.
We also noticed on the way back, we really didn’t want to stop and eat at parks, we were over it, so we ventured into some “hole in wall” cafes and restaurants and it was worth the money.
So, our first lesson is if you are planning to pack food for a long road trip, take into consideration that it may be wiser just to pack some munchies until you find a cool, local, restaurant or cafe, after all, isn’t that one reason for a road trip – to eat local food?
Next, we found that over-packing is going to happen, no matter what, but why? Think about this for a minute, taking a few clothes, and cleaning them 2 or 3 times on your trip is a lot easier than packing 7 shirts, 12 pants and so on.
On our 2nd trip in 2012, we added a lot less weight to our trip, not on purpose, as we went from a Tahoe to an Equinox, but we found, by accident, that doing laundry on a stay over is easy to accomplish. We designated 2 people (out of 4) every 3 days to do laundry, and that amounted to 4 to 5 times during the trip, and it wasn’t that bad. In fact, I found some of my best conversations with locals was at a laundry mat in South Dakota.
So Our 2nd lesson we learned is that laundry easy to do, much easier than you think , and it will cut back on clutter and weight on your trip. Don’t think of laundry as something you do at home, during your daily grind, it’s different when you are away from home, its vacation laundry.
One of the biggest lessons we learned was to “slow down” and soak in the sites. At some destinations, it seemed like we were in a rush. Yellowstone was a good example. It’s a beautiful place just to stop by the road side and soak in the beauty. With the fast pace of today, this was probably the hardest part of our venture. SLOW DOWN! We had to remind ourselves that we are on vacation and we need to enjoy places we’ve never been, and a good chance you will never be seeing again.
Our 3rd and last lesson is simply slow down, enjoy the area you are visiting and don’t be afraid to find brochures and ask questions from the locals. There is no rush!
If you have any comments on our ideas , or lessons you learned on your road trip or trips please send us a comment and we will add them to this article. These are Helpful Road Trip Lessons that we found.
If you want to learn how to plan a family vacation you need to start with how much you really want do, and if you need structure. This article covered the pros and cons of our two separate trips, one totally planned, and one not planned at all , we just left the driveway and drove across country.
US Travel Information along the way on both trips was very helpful. We noted all road closures, weather problems, and we used “Waze” to note any upcoming slowdowns, police, road way hazards and most importantly, time to a certain destination.
If you choose to do your road trip without planning or you choose to plan it all out ahead of time, these 3 road trip lessons will help. We hope you find them useful and informative and these Helpful Road Trip Lessons will guide you during your trip.