Fun on the Run
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With these tips for a successful summer road trip you will be able to eliminate whining, boredom, hunger, cabin fever, and actually enjoy your vacation.
This summer take a trip that brings the family together and instills good values in your children. Here are our Top Ten Tips for a Successful Road Trip.
Finance the trip. Start a vacation savings account well ahead of time and create a detailed budget with about 10 percent over that amount for unexpected expenses.
Prepare your car. Clean your car inside and out, check the tires and if necessary rotate or replace them, make sure all indicators are working and all fluids are at the right levels. Consider renting a car if your trip takes you especially far from home.
Pack right! You’ll need maps, flashlights, an emergency blanket, rain ponchos, something to entertain the kids, a GPS system, hand warmers and three days' worth of water and food. You’ll also want an emergency kit that includes bandages, gauze, ointment for cuts, aspirin, children’s medicine and a thermometer.
Map it out. Plot your course in detail, decide on your final destination, plan out how many miles you’ll cover each day, and consult AAA or state transportation sites to avoid construction and traffic. You may want to take a different route home to experience different sites and people.
Take turns driving. Driving tired is not safe for anyone involved.
Prepare playlists. Pack headphones and portable music playing devices for the kids and make sure each of the drivers has a way to play their favorite songs/music genres.
Know local traffic laws. Laws vary by state so check out the rules beforehand.
Find Deals. Check hotels.com for cheaper rates in the areas you plan to stop, look for coupons in local papers for restaurant deals, and use Google to find discounts on local attractions.
Save on gas. Visit gasbuddy.com to find the cheapest gas near you. To get the best gas mileage, pack light, go the speed limit, use maps so you don’t get lost, and/or rent a fuel-efficient car.
- Secure your home. Ask a friend or family member to remove fliers and pamphlets on your porch or in your driveway. Place a hold on your newspaper and your mail. Leave a light on inside the house. Set your alarm system and turn off the gas. Switch off water in rooms that could potentially flood your home. Make sure all the windows are locked and store valuables in a secure location. Don't change your answering machine message to one saying you're on vacation.