5 tips for a successful road trip November 14th, 2014

Kia is no stranger to exciting road trips. Just recently, we launched the Father and Son Road Trip project to encourage fathers and sons to share their stories with us and win a special overnight road trip. Today, we are putting together a list of tips for a great road trip for our fans. If you are planning a road trip in the near future or if you’ve always wanted to go on a road trip but were unsure where to begin, here are some tips to help you get started.

 Think about whether you want to travel alone or with others

If you plan to travel alone, prepare a set of CD’s or a playlist to keep yourself entertained. Even better, you can prepare some playlists with certain themes.

The company of a friend can be delightful, but just make sure you remember a couple of things. You and your travel companion will be captive for long periods of time. Before you make a commitment, consider how well you get along. Also, it may be a good idea to divide the work between you and your travel mates. Who will be navigating, who’s planning meals, and who’s driving when?

If you are planning to travel with kids, be sure to check out your car seats. Car seats can occasionally loosen or even become unsecured since you last buckled it in. And you’re going to need to pack some  snacks, drinks, garbage bags, baby wipes, paper towels and other necessities for kids.

Pack lightly, but smartly

You’re going to want a car charger for your phone so that you always have access to GPS and an easy way to look up hotspots wherever you are. Don’t get over reliant on GPS though; you never know about reception so it’s a good idea to have an old-fashioned paper map on standby. An emergency repair kit is also a good idea. You should have some reflectors or flares, jumper cables, and a tire iron in case of an emergency. A set of spare car keys will keep you from locking yourself out, which is sure to put a damper on the trip. For the extra cautious, it might be a good idea to bring a gallon of water and a gallon of fuel. Still, when you’re packing all your stuff, be mindful of how much you are loading down your car. The heavier your car, the more you’re going to have to gas up.

Set a budget for your trip 

Although road trips may seem like a cheaper alternative to pricey plane tickets, you may end up spending more than you expected if you don’t set a budget ahead of time. The price of fuel will be proportional to how far you plan to travel. Plan in advance for parking and remember that it’s not always free. Rest stops can quickly become pricey if you don’t plan ahead for meals. Packing some sandwiches can really save you in the long run.

 Save gas by utilizing these gas saving tips

Driving habits such as abruptly accelerating and braking is never good for fuel efficiency. Slow and steady is the best policy. Make sure your GPS is up to date with the most recent version. Old versions may drive you in circles, which is just a waste of gas and time. You can also use gas-saving apps on your smartphones. Check out more tips on staying fuel-efficient from our: 5 green driving tips: staying fuel-efficient post.

Get your car checked out before any long trips

Last but not least, your beloved car must be in its best condition before going on a special road trip. It’s recommended that you get your car checked two weeks in advance of your trip just in case there are some parts that need to be replaced. Here is a quick list of the most essential parts that should be in tip-top condition. Hoses and belts are crucial for your engine to perform properly. Your tires should be inspected for any damage or bulges. Under-inflated tires are not only extremely dangerous but they can also affect your fuel economy. Last, there are the brakes, lights, wipers, wiper fluid, battery, and air conditioning. Checking these are a must for any long voyage.

 

(Eat your Kimchi team on a road trip with customized Kia Soul)

 So pack these tips away, and if you and your car are ready…it’s time to get on the road! Kia already set out on a road trip with the Eat your Kimchi team in Korea earlier this year. If you are interested in their story, you can follow up on their blog. We would also love to hear about your own road trip stories and pictures with Kia. Please share them with us on our SNS channels.