The ultimate road trip can be stressful when you’re on a budget, but nothing beats an extended weekend mission with your best friends. There are a few easy tricks of the trade that will make for epic road trips without draining your wallet.
Toss your tent in the back of the car and all you have to worry about is finding flat ground to pitch it on. Most state parks have inexpensive campgrounds, so just be sure to check your route in advance to determine the best spots.
Bring a Cooler Full of Food
Eating out is expensive, especially when it’s three meals a day. Plan a trip to the co-op or grocery store before you leave and pack your cooler full of all the necessities—PB&J, hamburgers and hotdogs, oatmeal, coffee, and your favorite snacks.
Bar-hopping can be a blast, but save it for one night only, and spend the others around a campfire swapping stories and playing games with your pals.
Don’t Be Afraid of Last Minute Adjustments
Weather going south? Feeling like staying in one place a little longer? Don’t worry about it! Flexibility is key and spontaneity usually leads to great new adventures. Don’t be afraid to change your plans at the last minute to take an extra day somewhere you’re really stoked about. Just be sure the whole crew is on board.
Bring an Atlas
This might seem a little 20th century, but an atlas is the best way to perfect your navigating skills without being completely dependent on your iPhone. Using an atlas also prevents potentially incurring expensive data overage charges from too much GPS usage.
Pack the Car Full
Five people are better than two, and you know that random last minute friend-of-a-friend addition will always bring the trip to the next level. More people to make memories with, not to mention splitting the gas money five ways can be a huge relief on your bank account.
Have fun, be safe, and happy road tripping!