How to Plan a Safe, Comfortable Road Trip for an Unforgettable Summer
Are you making plans for an epic road trip this summer? Exploring the open road by truck can make for an exciting vacation. Before you start packing those bags, though, you need to take care of a few essential tasks to keep yourself safe and stress-free along the way. From maintenance for your vehicle to keeping your trip legal, here’s what you need to check off your summer road trip prep list.
Decide Whether You’re Taking a Car or a Truck
Do you have a truck and think that will short-change your road trip experience? You may want to think again. If it’s just you (or even you and a friend) hitting the road, a truck can offer some major road trip perks. For those who want to explore nature, a truck makes car camping so much easier. You can build a tent right in the bed of your truck to give yourself plenty of room to stretch out and get comfy. With a ground-attachment tent, you can even fit up to four people inside, which makes this a viable option for families. You’ll want to pack light no matter what, but minimizing your packing can be extra handy when you’re road tripping in a truck with limited space.
Not up for a camping adventure and need a little more space? If you own a truck, you can look into renting a vehicle for your big road trip. In addition to freeing up some cargo and passenger room, renting a car for a road trip also helps cut down on wear and tear on your own vehicle.
Double Check Your Insurance Coverage
An accident is the last thing you want slowing you down during your vacation, but accidents do happen. It’s best to be prepared for them with current, complete insurance coverage that fits your needs. Check your policy to see if it’s current, and if you need to renew, be sure to do your homework before opting for auto-renew. Auto Insurance explains that you may find a better deal by doing a little research: “If you want the best deal on car insurance, you need to comparison shop. Different insurers charge very different prices for basically the same product. The only way to make sure you have the best price is to get quotes from multiple companies.” Compare those against your current company’s rate, and don’t be afraid to call to ask for discounts that will save you even more.
You shouldn’t have to pay an arm and a leg to get the best car insurance deal, but you do need to have the minimum coverage required by law in your state. While these are the minimum amounts you can get away with and still have legal insurance coverage, it may be best to go with higher liability limits to better protect yourself and others in the event of an accident during your trip.
Schedule a Tune-Up if You’re Taking Your Vehicle
Spending some time in your own truck or car can be half the fun of a road trip. To prevent any problems from popping up along the way, though, you will need to perform some maintenance. If it’s been a while since your last maintenance appointment, set aside some time to have your truck’s fluids, brakes and air filters checked and serviced if necessary. Your tires are also important for keeping you safe and stress-free on the road, so double check the tread on yours, and also make sure the pressure is correct. Driving on improperly inflated or worn tires can not only leave you driving on a spare if there’s a blowout, it can actually be a danger to your life and the lives of others on the road. Driving during a blowout takes some knowledge and practice, so maintaining your tires is a much safer way to prepare for your road trip.
A summer road trip is as American as apple pie, so make sure you and your truck are up for the adventure. Check off those essential maintenance tasks to keep your vehicle safe, consider renting a car if you need more space, and invest in the right insurance so that you won’t have to worry if an accident does happen. Finally, don’t forget to have fun out on the road!
Keith Jacobs, a certified gearhead, is passionate about sharing his knowledge and experience to help keep others safer on the roads.
Photo Credit: Pixabay