How to plan and prepare for a road trip

Most South Africans spend 18 days on holiday each year. While the reasons to travel vary from broadening their horizons to escaping their daily lives, a fun road trip could turn out to be a nightmare if not properly planned. 

If you’re planning a cross-country road trip, there are a few things you need to consider before you head out on the open road. 

Unexpected things happen on road trips all the time. We want to make sure you remember your holiday for the right reasons. Keep reading to learn our six favourite road trip tips. 

Only 44% of the South African adult population travelled last year domestically, which is a shame because there is so much to see and do here from wine country to the abundance of wildlife. 

Planning ahead of time for your cross-country road trip means you can create and stick to a budget. It also means you’ll know exactly what you need to pack depending on the weather you’ll encounter. 

By planning ahead you’ll also be able to plan out where to get petrol, where to find food, and where you can stay. Planning lets you avoid potential trouble spots like construction or unsafe areas as well.

While planning ahead is a good idea, there are times when delays happen. Sometimes no matter how much you plan; things still don’t go your way. 

Allowing for spontaneity helps you keep your stress levels low. You will also find that you’re more likely to enjoy what does show up rather than focusing on what didn’t go right. 

While GPS is a great invention, there are plenty of spots in South Africa where service is either spotty or non-existent. One easy way to ensure you’ll never get lost is to pack a paper road atlas with you. Paper never loses power and your kids may enjoy studying the map or you’ll discover new places. 

While it often seems easier and more fun to eat junk food while on a road trip, it’s not a great idea. You don’t want to get stuck with hyper sugar-loaded kids stuck in a car for hours at a time, nor do you want to deal with potential stomach problems from eating poorly on a road trip, especially if you’re travelling somewhere that doesn’t offer a lot of restrooms to use. 

What to pack

Invest in a cooler to put in your car and stock it with fresh foods such as:

  •  Fruits like apples and tangerines
  • Deli meats
  • Cheese
  • Veggies like carrots and celery

While you don’t have to avoid junk food, everyone on your trip will stay happier and feel better if you minimise them as much as possible. 

No road trip is complete without your automobile. But if it’s not in good working condition, you may spend more time and money getting it fixed than you will on your road trip.

Before you leave, do yourself a favour and schedule a tune-up. Your mechanic will check for potential problems and fix them before your trip.

You should also do the following on your car before you depart:

  • Clean your car
  • Refill windscreen wiper fluid
  • Check lights
  • Get oil changed
  • Check the air in tires

The healthier your car is, the better time you’ll have on your trip. No one wants to spend most of their holiday stranded in the middle of nowhere. 

Investing in a car Service Plan means all your trips will be safe ones because your car will be serviced on time and most of your costs will be budgeted for in an easy monthly payment plan. And the Service Plan comes with standard Free Roadside Assistance in case something does happen. 

Not only can you budget more easily, but you can also enjoy your trip knowing you and your family are safe. Click here to get your car Service Plan today.


Previous Article

Our car enthusiast’s gift guide

Next Article

Mazda CX-30 set to arrive in SA soon

Need more help?

We're here to help.
Your privacy is important to us. To demonstrate our commitment, please refer to the MotorHappy notification which communicates how we process your personal information to comply with legislation.
Related Article