How To Plan the Perfect Road Trip

February 29, 2024


Tips on How to Plan a Road Trip 

Gearing up for the perfect road trip near Denver? Find out how to make the most of your vacation with this how-to guide. Whether you’re heading to Steamboat Springs, the Grand Canyon, or a cross-country destination, explore key planning and auto maintenance steps to take before putting your car in gear. Use a cross-country trip planner and professional auto maintenance services for worry-free adventures.

Plan Your Route Well in Advance

It all starts with a clear route. A cross-country route is going to take some serious planning, but even a three-day trip to the Grand Canyon is better with proper planning. Most journeys pass by other iconic sights, so it’s worth taking your time and finding out what there is to do in the local area.

Do you want to travel on highways to get there as soon as possible, or does a two-lane adventure sound more your style? Planning the right route can dramatically change a road trip, so it’s worth spending some time considering.

A cross-country trip to the east coast is a great way to explore your nation. Choose a highway that takes you straight to New England or take a round-about way to explore areas of the Midwest and South.

A West Coast trip is another popular route to explore a wide range of climates and iconic cities. Venture from Olympic National Park all the way to Joshua Tree National Park to enjoy all that the Pacific Coast has to offer.

Choose Some Memorable Stops

If you only stop at fast-food restaurants and gas stations as you head out of Denver, you’re going to miss out. Off-the-beaten-path stops can add character and memories to your trip. While you can cruise to Moab, Utah, and the surrounding national parks in just under six hours, why not take even longer? A few pit stops allow you to enjoy the ride and take in some new sites and hidden gems.

Check the route to your stops to see if there are any steep grades, seasonal roads, or other issues. These may not stop you from traveling on your chosen route, but you’ll want to have your vehicle inspected to ensure you’re capable of handling a little off-road or steep incline driving

Change Your Oil

When was the last time you checked the oil? An oil change is an essential auto maintenance task that’s easy to forget about. There’s nothing worse than engine issues while you’re trying to make up miles on the highway, so be sure to schedule a service at a local auto shop.

Pack an Emergency Kit

Don’t let an accident or emergency situation ruin your road trip. Leaving home and heading to new territory can bring up new risks if you’re not prepared, so be sure you have a car emergency kit packed and easily accessible.

The most important item to pack is a standard emergency medical kit. Bandages, pain medication, and antiseptic wipes are important to always have on hand. Here are some other car safety items to pack before your next road trip:

  • Phone charger
  • Jumper cables
  • Ice scraper
  • Map
  • Sand or cat litter
  • Blanket
  • Reflective triangles or flares

Driving through the mountains in Colorado could leave you exposed to the elements, so be sure to pack clothes for cold temperatures. You may never use your emergency kit, but it’s always better to be prepared.

Have Your Car Inspected

An oil change is a common auto maintenance task, but there are many others that help your car continue to drive safely. Schedule an inspection at your local auto shop for full-service maintenance and repairs. If you’re planning a summer road trip, find out what summertime maintenance you should have completed before you head to the highways.

An inspection service covers your engine, brakes, lights, exhaust, key fluids, tires, and other areas of your vehicle. An affordable maintenance inspection is far more affordable than an emergency auto repair. Schedule maintenance before you leave Denver to prevent a failed component from ruining your road trip.

Prepare for the Weather

You never know how the weather will change. A few days’ drive can take you into scorching deserts or freezing, mountainous terrain. It’s important to do your research and understand the weather at your location and your route. Packing the wrong gear and clothing can prevent you from enjoying your trip. Proper protection and gear keep you comfortable and safe as you venture from warm beaches to chilly mountain trails.

While you’re packing and preparing, schedule an inspection to have your heater and air conditioner inspected. An inefficient or damaged air conditioner can make a desert drive uncomfortable or even dangerous. Your local auto shop can quickly repair your climate control systems for a refreshing ride wherever the road takes you.

Bring Along Friends and Family

Road trips are best experienced with loved ones. Clean out your backseat and invite a few friends or family members along. Traveling with more people requires some more planning, but it’s a great way to share your experiences with the people you love.

A popular way to add room for the extra cargo is with a trailer, cargo carrier, or rooftop carrier. Ask a local auto technician for more information about the towing capacity of your vehicle. Don’t overload your ride with friends and belongings, or you may damage your suspension.

Need to Get Road Trip Ready? Stop By Paddock Imports Today!

Prepare for an unforgettable road trip today by finding road trip planner attractions and scheduling an inspection at Paddock Imports in Denver, CO. As your leading auto shop in Denver for imported cars, we’re confident we can repair and maintain your vehicle in time for your next road trip. Contact us today to schedule an inspection or emergency repair service before you take off on your next adventure.

Image Credit: Shutterstock/Romvy