How To Stay Entertained On A Road Trip
It’s hour 10 and you’re seriously thinking about jumping from your moving vehicle. You’ve spent 4 hours sleeping, 2 hours chatting about the weather, 2 hours listening to your iPod on repeat, and the remainder of the time wishing the scenery would change. There’s no radio and no cell signal because you’re out of range. The only worse thing would be breaking down here, in the middle of no-where.
Road trips remain a classic international pastime – there is no better way to experience rugged coastlines, iconic highways, charming sea-side towns or even exotic locations like Iceland than from behind the wheel of an automobile. Flying means you miss the breathtaking scenery and premiere attractions along the way, and it’s an opportunity to spend quality time with family or friends.
But what about those endless hours on the road? What about when the conversation dries up and the scenery turns grey? A road-trip shouldn’t have to be a bore! Our recent US road-trip saw us criss-cross through the country for two weeks, some days spending 16 hours on the road to get to our destinations by nightfall.
Here are some tips we used for how to minimize monotony while on the road!
Pack your laptop.
If possible, opt for a car hire which has a power outlet or a/c adapter, and let your laptop entertain you for hours. Watch a movie, organize your pictures, write a short story, hell, write your life story!
Most smartphones now have the ability to create a wifi hotspot, so if traveling within your own country (don’t turn on data roaming if traveling internationally), you’ll have internet access…in the car. A wireless mouse is a great purchase in this instance as they work on virtually any surface!
Choose an interesting route
Plan to take the scenic route – that’s the point of a road-trip! This may not be the fastest or most direct means for reaching your final destination, however odds are it will be far more interesting, far more entertaining, and you won’t even notice the extra time it took.
Everyone has to eat – consider planning your road trip around food – for instance the South Florida Burger Road Trip. Why stop at a gas station for snacks when you can plan ahead and include a lunch stop at a gorgeous picnic pull off, or a fabulous fish & chips shop by the sea?
When choosing your route be aware of car hire small print – during a recent road trip along the US/Mexican border our rental agreement prohibited us from taking the car into Mexico.
Bring your iPod.
Depending on your route, you may not be able to pick up a radio signal during certain portions of your trip. Listening to music is uplifting and entertaining – reflect on your life, dreams and passions, daydream to the songs, scream the lyrics to Katy Perry’s “Roar”. Adding a soundtrack to your travels makes a road-trip entertaining and keeps spirits high!
If money is no obstacle, buy a satellite radio package.
Car games are not restricted to children. They are an incredibly entertaining way to pass the time for both adults and adults who think they are children!
The Number Plate Game
This game is best suited to a road trip throughout the US – photograph/spot as many different state number plates as possible. Of the 50 States in the United States we currently have photographs of 48…we became so addicted to this game that we may have tailed a car from Oregon for half hour in our opposite direction just to get close enough to snap a shot!
But remember – don’t tailgate!
The Yellow Car Game
The rules are simple – every time you see a yellow car you have permission to punch another person while proclaiming “yellow car!” Potentially put this game on pause when traveling through New York City for the sake of intense bruising!
A road-trip is a fantastic opportunity to catch up on reading. Fully stock your kindle before your trip, or bring along those dusty novels you’ve been telling yourself you’ll eventually get to. Books are a fantastic way to pass the time – just don’t get car sick and throw up everywhere!
Choose your travel companion wisely
Taking a road trip with someone will be the ultimate test to your relationship. If possible, travel with someone you get along with. What sounds like incredibly straight forward advice is often overlooked, and can make or break what should be a fantastic and stress-free holiday.
Can you put up with the person in question for 16 hours in a confined space? Do you fear for your life every time they’re seated behind the wheel? Do you have similar music tastes? Do you want to hit them every time they open their mouth? These are questions you should ask yourself before agreeing to a road trip with them!