Traveling with family and loved ones is a great way to explore the world around you while making memories that are sure to last a lifetime. As the family travel planner, there are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind, whether you’re visiting historical sites in your home state or if you’re venturing to the other side of the country. When you are the designated family travel planner, knowing how to prepare for any type of trip ahead of time is the key to ensuring the best outcome possible.
Ensure Good Cell Service
If you are the deemed family travel planner in your household, you will need to take the time to ensure good cellphone reception and service wherever you are planning to travel to and visit. Research local wireless infrastructure development if you are planning to visit rural areas that are not rife with wireless connections and providers in the area. In some cases, you may need to seek a hotspot or an alternative method to connect to wireless internet or to your cell service depending on where you are traveling.
You can find more information on local cell service quality by conducting a bit of research online. Searching different zip codes and regions to compare cell service, wireless providers, and alternative connection solutions will help you maintain your peace of mind, especially if you are planning to head into the desert or into another remote area. Knowing your way around the areas you intend to visit will also come in handy if you are no longer able to use your phone to dial out or even connect with local emergency services.
Keep a Physical Map
When you are acting as the family travel planner and you are planning your next trip, it’s highly advisable to invest in physical maps that are relevant to your intended destinations. While you may be tempted to solely rely on Topcon GPS systems or even your smartphone with Google Maps or applications such as Waze, these are not always reliable, especially in dead zones or anytime you find yourself in a location where it is nearly impossible to connect to the internet or surrounding satellites. Familiarizing yourself with traditional physical maps will not only help you navigate while you are traveling to somewhere new and exciting, but it will also help you to do so confidently.
Benefits of Keeping Physical Maps Handy
Whether you are visiting a local campsite or if you are traveling across state lines, maintaining a physical map at all times is recommended in case you find yourself lost or on the wrong path. If you wind up in a rural area or in a location that is devoid of internet connections, it may be difficult to use your classic GPS systems or navigational applications. With a physical map, you are able to navigate using traditional highways and freeways and with the use of back roads, depending on where you are traveling at the time.
Have Spare Fuel Ready
Anytime you are planning to take a trip with your entire family, you will need to consider the amount of fuel you are likely to require in order to arrive at your intended final destination. Investing in spare fuel is essential whether you are using a traditional engine or if you are traveling in vehicles with diesel engines. Stocking up on spare fuel is possible by investing in spare fuel cans and jugs that can be transported while you are driving from one destination to the next.
Tips on Stocking Fuel
Before heading out on your next road trip, you may want to stock up on fuel while doing so at the most affordable price possible. To do so, you can take time to research local fuel locations and gas stations near you and along your planned trip ahead of time. This will help you avoid overpriced gas stations while finding the stops that offer the best deals before you even begin your trip.
Find a Great Place to Stay
When you are the designated family travel planner, you will want to take your time while researching hotels, homes, and other types of rentals to reserve while you are taking your next road trip. When you want to find a great place to stay, such as a five-star hotel or even a luxury apartment for rent, you will want to research options both locally and online. Searching for locations to rent and stay in while planning a trip online is a way to ensure you have made the right decision and that the location you have chosen is optimal for all members of your household and family.
Benefits of Searching for Rentals and Hotels Online
Planning a road trip, long or short, does not have to feel overwhelming or confusing, even if you are new to the prospect with your entire family. Accessing review websites beforehand can help you find suitable hotels and rentals along your way, whether you’re traveling to a new city or planning a cross-country adventure. When you search online for rentals and hotels, you can do so by referencing third-party reviews, testimonials, and uploaded photos from patrons who have stayed in your preferred hotel or rental in the past.
When you are researching hotels and rentals online, you can do so by comparing nightly and weekly rates, fees, and potential charges you may also be responsible for with each establishment. Take the time to compare amenities and features to find rentals that have something to offer for the whole family. Use reviews to feel confident in your choice and reserve your hotel or rental ahead of time when you choose to do so online or with the use of an app such as Airbnb.
Plan Out Rest Stops
Anytime you are assuming the role of the family travel planner and you are planning a trip with children, toddlers, or babies, you will want to plan out rest stops ahead of time. From researching local rest areas in the states you intend to visit to check with nearby portable restroom trailers, knowing where you can stop to take a bathroom break is key to ensuring smoothness at all times during your traveling adventures. When you are familiar with nearby rest stops anywhere you are traveling and exploring, you are less likely to encounter accidents, especially when you are on the road with children or babies of any age.
Tune Up Your Vehicle
Before heading out on a major road trip or a cross-country adventure, you will want to tune up your vehicle as the family travel planner. Tuning up and repairing your vehicle by visiting a traditional mechanic or even a BMW repair shop will ensure that your car or truck is ready for the long haul. When you choose to take your vehicle into the shop, be sure to request a complete inspection and an in-depth tune-up to determine if your vehicle will require any more work or repairs before it is safe to take on your next trip.
Benefits of a Tune-Up Before a Road Trip
Requesting a tune-up for your vehicle before your next road trip is a way to add a layer of protection to your car or truck before hitting the road. When you know that all of your fluids are topped off and that your vehicle is in proper working order, you can maintain your peace of mind regardless of the length of a trip you have in mind. A tune-up can also provide you with valuable insight into the inner workings of your car or truck to determine if you require any additional work before you are ready to go.
Prepare for Emergencies
As a family travel planner, you will need to prepare for potential emergencies that may happen while you’re on the road or somewhere new with your family and loved ones. From researching roadside assistance services to using an app that monitors driving habits, there are many different ways to prepare for emergencies anytime you are planning a major road trip or vacation with the ones who mean the most to you. In addition to enrolling in a roadside assistance service, you can also stock your own first aid kit, kitty litter, flashlights, batteries, and non-perishable food items in your vehicle before heading out on any extended road trip, regardless of where you are starting from and your final intended destination.
Remember Personal Care Items
When you’re in the process of planning for an upcoming road trip or vacation with all the members of your household, you will want to take the time to remember and pack personal care items. Packing personal care items such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash is always advisable for a dentist and any health professional. You may also need to pack undergarments, deodorant, and other personal hygiene care items and products, depending on how long you will be away from the home and where you intend to visit and explore.
Advantages of Packing Personal Care Items Ahead of Time
While you may be tempted to shop for and pick up personal care items along the way while you are traveling somewhere new, this is not always advisable nor is it the most budget-friendly option. When you are investing in personal care items on the road, you may be required to pay significantly more, especially if you choose to shop for the items you need once you arrive at your intended destination, which may be a city or another tourist destination. Preparing the items you need by shopping in bulk or shopping ahead of time will allow you to save more money while you are on the road.
Watch for Interesting Activities
Planning the best and most memorable trip with your loved ones should include exploring fun activities and in some cases, even historical sites, depending on the interests you and your loved ones share. While it is possible to plan for activities and adventures ahead of time when you are going on a trip with your entire family, you can also watch for interesting activities by keeping an eye on the signs you pass while you’re traversing on the highway. Keeping an eye on the signs you pass when you are traveling to a new destination will not only prevent you from missing your intended exits, but it can also help you explore new and exciting areas in the region you are in that you did not know previously existed.
Carry a First Aid Kit
As a family travel planner, you may want to ensure the protection and health of your loved ones at all times, especially when you are traveling on a road trip or taking a vacation together to somewhere new. Before calling on a medical transportation service when you experience an accident or injury, consider investing in your very own first aid kit. Having a first aid kit is also recommended even if you are not going on a trip but want to protect your loved ones on-the-go, regardless of your location.
Benefits of Carrying a First Aid Kit
Carrying a first aid kit is a way for you to add a layer of protection to yourself and your loved ones, even if you are traveling away from home. Most first aid kits include antiseptics, which can stop and prevent infections from spreading. Pain relievers, bandages, gauze, and even anti-inflammatory medications may also come included in a first aid kit, depending on the type of kit you choose to invest in. Before selecting your next first aid kit, be sure to take the time to compare the included components to ensure you are making the right choice.
As the family travel planner, preparing for a trip weeks or even months in advance can come in handy once you are ready to head out on vacation or on your next adventure. When you take your time to prepare as the family travel planner, you are less likely to find yourself caught off guard, stressed out, or confused, even when you are exploring somewhere completely new. The more immersed you become in the culture of traveling with family, the easier it will be for you to get enjoyment out of your trips, big or small.