• How to road trip—A survival guide

    For an easier time on your next family trip, be sure to take along plenty of smart snacks and amusements.

    For an easier time on your next family trip, be sure to take along plenty of smart snacks and amusements.

    With the holidays in full swing, now is a perfect time for a vacation. If you’re planning to be among the one in four people expecting to take a road trip this year according to AAA, there are a few steps you can take to prepare for your trip to ensure it goes off without a hitch. Whether you are traveling near or far this holiday season, these five tips will keep your car and travel companions in good spirits from point A to point B and everywhere in between.

    1. Plan ahead and include all your travel companions. Be sure everyone in the car will have a special destination or point of interest to look forward to during the trip. Gather ideas of potential pit stops along your route in advance and let your group weigh in to chart the course. There are a variety of online trip planning tools that make it easy for everyone to offer suggestions and rank their choices.

    2. Road trip activities. Good playlists and great conversations are the cornerstone for all memorable road trips. The games you played on road trips during your childhood are still fun and entertaining. Eye Spy, the license plate game and 20 questions are all good, low-tech ways to engage all your travel companions who are along for the ride. Try a seated “scavenger hunt.” Write out a list of likely items to spot along the route or at the sites you visit and the first one to check off the whole list gets to choose the next rest stop.

    3. Keep the car comfy. Anticipate the various needs and comfort of your travel companions by stashing a few pillows and blankets in the car. Having a pillow will allow your passengers to take a quick nap before it’s their turn to drive. And keeping an extra blanket or two in the car will eliminate the battle over the air conditioning. Bring along cookie sheets or cutting boards for the kids to have on their laps so they can write, draw or do small puzzles in the car.

    4. Pack smart snacks. Keep your body fueled while you’re on the road with portable and shareable snacks. Granola bars, fruit and crackers are easy options for snacking in the car. If you can’t decide between sweet and savory, try COMBOS Sweet & Salty Caramel Crème Pretzel and Combos Sweet & Salty Vanilla Frosting Pretzel. The new snack is perfect for road trip noshing and satisfies both sweet and salty cravings! For more information visit www.Facebook.com/COMBOS and www.COMBOS.com.

    5. Prepare for the unexpected. Even the best-laid plans can hit a bump in the road. Road construction, flat tires and traffic can all put a damper on your road trip causing delays and frustration. Make sure your car is road ready before you head out—check the oil and wiper fluid levels and make sure all the tires, including the spare, are properly inflated. And as a precaution, program the number of a nationwide emergency automobile service in your phone.

    North American Precis Syndicate


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