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The Dos and Don't of Summer Road Trips

The Dos and Don't of Summer Road Trips DO DON'T Make a plan. Schedule down to the last minute. But keep it flexible. You need to have a rough idea of where you're going and the progress you'll make each day. But beyond that, keep it loose. When traveling with kids there are bound to be delays, so make sure you keep that in mind when you set the schedule. This is always a recipe for disaster since delays are bound to pop up. By keeping the schedule loose (more like a guideline than a rule), you'll have time for both unexpected catastrophes (a kid with a fever) and fun departures from your course (World's Largest Ball of String, here we come!). Travel during the summer. Travel during peak dates. There's no better time to hit the road than when the sun is bright and the birds are singing. So get out there and enjoy the balmy weather while you can - this is also a great reason to load up the camping gear and save on the It's great to get out on the road when the weather is fantastic, but if you decide to do it on 4th of July weekend, you're going to hit nothing but headaches (read: traffic). Instead, opt for off-days that won't present problems; you're bound to have a better time (and waste less on the road). cost of hotels. Provide snacks and entertainment for kids. Bring sugary snacks. There's nothing worse than hearing "I'm hungry!" and "Are we there yet?" every five minutes. So bring along plenty of snacks and a variety of games (board games like Battleship, mind games like Mad Libs, and portable video games like those for the Nintendo DS). You'l keep the kids happy and entertained and create a peaceful environment for you and your spouse to interact. Unless you want your kids bouncing off the walls and professing tummy aches, skip the sugary sodas and preservative-laden snacks. By giving them crunchy fruits and veggies, all-natural granola bars, and juice boxes, you'll keep them satisfied without sending them into the atmosphere. Pack appropriate clothing. Pack for every climate. If you're heading to an area where the weather fluctuates frequently, be sure to pack appropriately (rain gear and so on). But if you're on your way to the beaches of southern California, you probably don't need much more than a swimsuit and flip flops. You're going to have limited space in the car and it's better to let the kids stretch their legs than fill every available nook with clothing for weather conditions that are unlikely to occur. If the weather is warm, plan for that temperature. If it ends up getting chilly you can always buy a sweatshirt. Bring a GPS. Rely on one method of mapping. This modern tech gadget will not only get you where you're going (with a charming female voice); it will also show gas stations, rest stops, hotels, and eateries along the way. In short, it provides a lot of added value over the old- school map. Just in case your GPS craps out, be sure to have a paper map on hand. It may seem redundant, but you'll be glad you have it when your GPS is on the fritz in the middle of the desert. How to Save Money on Gas? 1 Gas up outside the city. Gas stations in towns far away from major cities are usually cheaper than in city gas stations by far. 2 Don't use premium gas... .if you don't really need it. Your owner's manual will tell you if you need premium gas. 3 Use a rewards credit card. if they don't charge more for using credit. Car Rental Tips Shop around online first. You rarely need that extra insurance. You can often find deals and coupons online. Review your auto insurance policy and credit-card agreements; you're almost certainly covered already. Gas up. Do the math. Clarify which taxes, surcharges and other fees you'll be expected Check for restrictions on Don't prepay for gasoline - (it's rarely the best deal for you) - and then don't forget to fill the tank back up before you return the car. Be on time. to pay. Opt for a smaller car. where you can take the car. Here's a little secret: Rental car companies often run out of economy models because they're the most popular. You stand to get the upgrade anyway for the economy price. Some rental car companies' "unlimited mileage" rates don't include certain If you return your car late, the rental agency may charge you as much as a full day's rental, sometimes at a rate higher than before. states. Finding the Cheapest Hotels Roadside Assistance Having roadside assistance is having peace of mind. Go Online! Find the cheapest hotels on a road trip by visiting án online travel company and searching on price. Go Out! - Towing - Flat Tire Service - Jump Start Conversely, some of the cheapest hotels can be found by going a little way outside of a metro area. Go for rewards! - Lockout Service - Fuel and fluid delivery Save money on travel by signing up for the hotel's customer reward program before leaving on the trip. Check with your auto insurance agent and credit card company! A lot of auto insurance and credit card companies offer great roadside assistance programs. CALICO CHOST TOWN ENTRANB 1 Grand Canyon Ghost Town 5 Henry FordMuseum 8 Houdini Museum Museum 10 The Coronado Trail 4 Hoover Dam 2 National Parks 7 Cave City Niagara Fails Top 10 Greatest Road Trip Destinations Traveling in the company of those we love is home in motion. The Coronado Trail 10 5 Henry Ford Museum Calico Ghost Town 9 4 Hoover Dam - Leigh Hunt The Famous Houdini Museum 8 3 Niagara Falls Cave City 7 2 State and National Parks 1 Grand Canyon Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum 6 Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel from coast to coast without seeing anything. Oh highway! You express me better than I can express myself! - Walt Whitman - Charles Kuralt Sources: roadtripamerica.com, Squidoo, wahmresourcesite.com, roadtripwise.com, MSN CreditDonkey

The Dos and Don't of Summer Road Trips

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Summer road trips can go from fun-in-the-sun to major burn quite fast if you aren’t smart with your traveling expenses. Hidden fees and expenses are waiting to bite you around each curve. But you ca...

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