The whole point of a road trip is the driving, right? There's nothing worse than starting a much-awaited (and well-planned) drive, only to have the car break down. This happens more often than you'd think, and you can lose entire days stuck in a small town, waiting for parts to come in so your car can be fixed. Ward against this possibility -- and ensure your safety -- by having your vehicle checked before you head out. The appointment should include an oil change, plus safety checks on:
- Tire tread and pressure
- Windshield wipers
- Headlights and brake lights
- Fluid levels
- Belts and hoses
- Spare tire and jack
Create your own car emergency kit by filling a waterproof container with:
- Jumper cables
- Flashlight and batteries
- First aid kit
- Bottled water and nonperishable snacks
And, make sure someone else on the trip carries a second set of keys in case the driver's set gets lost or locked in the car.
Now that you have these helpful tips for planning your cross-country drive, you just have one thing to do -- hit the road, Jack!