With summer comes road trip season. Whether you’re going across the country or a few hours across the state, there’s something so iconic and nostalgic about traveling via car versus plane. Not to mention the fact, that when it comes to cost your road trip tends to be significantly less. Even so, between gas and food road trips might not cost as little as you’d expect.
In spite of rising gas prices, there are still ways to eliminate some of the costs on any road trip. Here are five ways to save on road trips, so you can put more money towards your vacation.
1. Bring Your Own Snacks & Meals
One of the biggest expenses of any trip is food. While fast food stops and small snacks here and there don’t seem expensive, their cost can rack up quickly. Instead of blowing your budget on McDonald’s and junk food, opt to bring your own cheaper and healthier snacks and meals.
Pack a cooler with water, drinks, and stock it with fruit, veggies, and sandwiches. Moreover, stop at your local grocery or superstore for family size bags of your favorite store-bought goodies, as they’re bound to be more inexpensive than individual servings.
2. Map Out Your Route
To make the most of your trip and gas supply map out your trip beforehand to ensure you’re taking the most efficient and costly route.
Find the shortest path to your destination and steer clear of too many local streets and roads that’ll cause you to either stop more frequently or run into rush hour traffic; all obstacles that serve to use up excess gas. Planning out your route can also help you avoid going through too many toll roads, an added expense that can cost more than you realize.
3. Use Your Cruise
Truly get the most out of your gas tank by utilizing your cruise control. Not only does it tend to ease the trip for the driver, but ensures the most efficient use of your gas. Turn on cruise control and go the speed limit or hover at a steady 65 to 70 mph pace.
Apart from economizing gas, your cruise will also ensure you don’t go over the speed limit, a practice that could lead to a hefty ticket.
4. Find the Cheapest Gas with an App
Not all gas is created equal, and depending on the state and location, you’ll find the price fluctuates. That being said, driving around to find the cheapest gas won’t save you money and defeats the purpose entirely.
Before heading out on the road download the Gasbuddy app to your phone. Gasbuddy can help you find the station that’s the cheapest in every town you stop in.
5. Find Alternative Accommodations
Most road trips span multiple days, which means you’ll need to find accommodations throughout. While that might be the case, a hotel each night, especially for multiple people, gets expensive quickly.
Instead of opting for the usual hotel stays, get a little creative to save money. Seek out family and friends along the way, bring along a tent if you’re the outdoorsy type, or find inexpensive Airbnbs to save hotel money for once you reach your destination.
Road trips may take a little longer in the long run, but they’re a great way to go on vacation without spending thousands on flights. And apart from finances, there’s no greater way to see the country and spend quality time with family or friends than taking a car across the nation. Nonetheless, even with money saved on flights, there are no doubt ways to save even more on your next car ride. Put to practice some of these surefire ways to save on road trips and you’ll be able to truly enjoy the destination once you reach it.
How far do you usually go on a road trip? What are some of your favorite inexpensive snacks to bring along?