How to Plan a Route by Car

How to Plan a Route by Car
With extra fees on luggage, security hassles and general anxiety when it comes to flying, many families opt to travel by car instead of plane. Planning a successful car trip requires knowing where you're going and how to get there. Take the steps to plan your route before you get in the car, and you'll find that you won't have as much hassle down the road.


Difficulty: Moderate


Things You’ll Need:
  • GPS 
  • A road map
Step 1
Map your route with current maps and GPS. 
Step 2
Map out your destination and print at least two mapped routes using sites such as Google or Yahoo Maps. Store the maps in a dry, safe place within your vehicle.
Step 3
Research the route once you have mapped it. Check with state transportation departments for potential construction, detours and other situations that can slow you down.
Step 4
Plan for inclement weather by researching the areas you'll drive through. If you determine you'll be driving through area with conditions that could be hazardous or slow you down, make adjustments to your route. For instance, if you're driving through an area that is potentially icy, modify your route to ensure you're traveling through the safest areas possible and adjust your schedule for delays.
Step 5
Ensure that your car is equipped with everything you may need on your trip and is ready for a long journey. Check air pressure, ensure that all lights are working and all turn signals are operational. Equip your car with everything you may need for your trip such as an emergency kit, registration, insurance information and spare tire kit.
Step 6
Save time for stops. When taking a road trip, the journey has the potential to be every bit as enjoyable as the destination. Make provisions within your schedule for taking the time to enjoy the scenery, make comfort stops and see the sights.

Tips & Warnings

Plan a fallback route in the event of construction or traffic congestion. Print out any secondary routes and place in your glove compartment or a safe place within your car before you begin your trip. When using GPS, save your secondary routes to your GPS' memory.
When mapping by a GPS unit that's installed on your vehicle's dash, be sure to plan your route a few days before your trip. This will ensure that you don't have to rush to route your plan right before your trip or, worse, attempt to plan the route while the car is in motion.
When traveling with pets, ensure that you pack their vaccination information and veterinary records.

Article Written By Kylie Keeler

Kylie Keeler has been freelance writing for more than 12 years. She has consulted and written for a number of publications and websites on Walt Disney World travel and Florida travel in general. Some of her former clients include Gannett Publications, and various private clients.

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