Featured photo by Matty Teague.
Road trips are a great way to see and do what you want at your own pace. Perfect for small groups and even better as a caravanning party, road trips are complete freedom. However, because we drive so often at home, we might forget that overseas, the process of getting on the road is a little different. Here’s a quick travel checklist for your road trip abroad:
Renting a Car
- Many car rental places book up early and cost more if you book at the airport, so, plan ahead (you can’t always just wing it — car rentals do sell out!). Compare several car services using Skyscanner’s “car hire” feature.
- Extra costs usually apply if you’re under 25.
- Many countries offer bargain rental cars (i.e. Wicked in Australia), but you have to book these ahead of time.
Always get insurance.
- Check for damages and report any damages before taking the car out of the lot.
- Make sure your seat belts work.
- Is there enough space for everyone’s luggage?
Determine how any parking & speeding tickets will be paid:
Will the driver pay or will your group be splitting the cost? What are the conditions of this agreement?
Pack a car charger for your iPhone.
Confirm your driver’s license is valid overseas.
Instead of renting out navigation, split the cost of a data plan with a phone service provider of the country you are visiting. You can then use Google Maps and Google Translate on your phone.
Check weather conditions as road are often closed due to bad weather.
Check local laws (German Autobahn = No speed limit. You’re welcome).
Make several music playlists, and bring the appropriate wires to hook up your smartphone to the radio. You will get sick of listening to the same music over and over, and you will be disappointed in the lack of radio or service in certain locations.
PLAN your drive time around arriving to catch the sunset!
If possible, avoid driving late into the night in unknown areas – street lights may not be as common as in your hometown.
Fill up the tank!
You may not see as many gas stations as you’d anticipate. You’d be surprised how often the cost of gas or petro is raised in remote areas or near tourist attractions.
Invite friends! Strangers work too :)
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