Anonymous asked in TravelUnited StatesOther - United States · 1 decade ago

Planning a Road Trip?

Me and about four or five of my friends [2 guys and 3 or 4 girls] plan on going across America in a little over a year.

here is what I need answered:

how much money should we take per person and should we use debit cards?

what are some awesome places to visit? Monuments, national parks, small towns etc.

what types of hotels should we stay at? or should we go camping?

how many sets of clothes would we need? and how would we wash?

what type of vehicle should we take?

if you have been on a road trip before what was it like?

and any other advice you got I will take it.

we are leaving from the Carolinas to California and back.

Thanks in advance the best answer to all these questions or the majority gets the ten points!!

3 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    I'm not going to answer all of those questions because i'll be writhing forever if i do

    The Basics

    Vehicle : A Chrysler /Dodge mini van

    Why ?

    Big enough for your purposes

    Readily available at a good price used

    Parts are also readily available

    Basically invisible to the the local cops

    Second Choice :

    A full sized Ford 12 Passenger Van w/ the 4.9 L straight 6 in it

    Any seats other than the drivers and the shot gun persons are mediocre at best however the vehicle does have some huge advantages over the mini van

    *It's a full sized van built on a truck chassis ,and it will easily haul every thing that you and your friends need

    *The 4.9 L 6 is probably one of the best engines that Ford has ever made .The engines are beyond reliable .Because it is a Straight 6 the engine is easy to work on and everything around it is is easily accessible.The same can't be said for the tight engine compartments of the fwd mini-vans.

    *It's a rear will drive vehicle which makes it vastly superior to front wheel drive for long distance high speed driving.

    * While they may be hard to find w/ the 6's in them

    Ford did make some of them with twin gas tanks -very nice find cheaper gas and fill them both up.

    Vehicle mantainance :

    Carry a 2 ton floor jack and a 4 way tire wrench -check Sears for their combo packages.

    Carry a full sized spare.The roads of the West are simply to empty to go driving around with a "doughnut for a tire

    Carry a tire pressure guage and check both tires and air pressure in the AM

    carry all your fuses

    carry a fuse puller

    carry a 12v voltage tester

    Know how to locate and use all the above

    Spend fifteen bucks and get a Haynes or a Chiltons repair manual for your vehicle

    Carry a half a set of every exterior light bulb that your vehicle uses and get into the habit of doing a regular once around the vehicle to see what works and what doesn't. Replace a needed Toss the correct flasher units into your light bulb collection .

    Why ?

    Because you're kids on the road in America and since you are you may be doing some of the possibly illegal things that kids on the road in America have always done

    All a cop needs to pull you over and really ruin your day is a reason and a blown license plate light more than qualifies as a reason



    Over time all vehicle will become crowded

    Because vehicles do quickly become crowded it's really important that you limit the amount of luggage that people can have on board . Try limiting it to the airline carry-on luggage standard

    Important Stuff

    Everybody with you has to be over 18 and be able to prove it- especially the girls

    Make sure that you have all the proper paper work for yourselves and your vehicle readily available

    Do not scrimp on the insurance , while carrying collision may be a coin toss, carrying the max for personal injury is not.

    Join AAA and get the most expensive plan that they have.In addition to road service AAA will also get you 10-15% discounts at hotels and many other places -read up on what they offer when you join. If you do enough traveling and take advantage of all the discounts that AAA offers in a short period of time the membership fee is basically paid for.


    Carry a little cash at all times and then use debit/atm /credit cards

    If need be,change your bank to one with branches all over the US so that you don't get hit w/ atm fees

    If a motel asks for a deposit , pay for it in cash because paying by credit card can tie up your available credit for a week or more

    I may or may not continue this .

    Leave it open I'll stop back and add to it periodically

    Edit :

    I've updated some stuff -see above -and I'm going to add to this list

    One of the first thngs that you realize when you do your first cross country- [mine was in 1970-] trip is that America is really big ...........and basically really empty. Because the interstates allow you to do so ,you should just haul -ashes straight west until you get west of the 100th meridian and then start check out the world .Use US 83 as the100th meridian


    Source(s): me
  • 4 years ago

    Generally speaking a long trip in a car is better than the same distance in short runs. The engine is always up to temperature so less wear and the fuel economy will be better. Get the car to a reasonable cruising speed and ease the throttle off very slowly on level going till it just starts to loose road speed and hold it there; that is called throttle feathering and can save you heaps of fuel. Have a complete check over of the car for anything and everything that might go wrong for a distance of the trip. Ask for a prioritized list and if it seems a bit over the top get a second opinion. If you eliminate an item on both lists as needing to be fixed then there is no reason you could not do the trip much cheaper than using a rental. Take your lists with you in the glove box; if you have a problem in route get it fixed as soon as possible. Have a good trip and enjoy it, take your time and regular breaks Hope that helps

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    - Debit cards or not I money's money I guess... As for how much it's really a matter of how long will it last. You'll need enough for gas, food, buying random stuff, and emergencies.

    - I've never quite been anywhere east of Arizona, but Sedona is a nice place if you're anywhere in Northern Arizona, likewise Tombstone is a nice place to see if you're anywhere down South. Obviously the Grand Canyon if you've never been.

    - Any hotel will work as long as it's cheap I guess. Although if you take a van it doesn't hurt to spend a night in that.

    - The amount of clothes really depends on how long you'll be going. I generally look at is as 1 pair of pants and socks for 2-3 days and a shirt and underwear for each day, then again you could push that out more if you don't mid the smell. But just make sure to bring a jacket for emergency purposes plus it makes a great substitute for a blanket. That and you never know how cold it will get in other states.

    - If you're going with 4 people, take a van or suv. It's alot roomier and works best if you plan on rotating drivers. I don't recommend a car unless you have one of those cargo things you can attach to the roof, since you probably be brining a ton of stuff. Actually it would good if you have one of those cargo things at the top especially if you have around 5 people going in a van. I wouldn't suggest a car for anymore than 5 people for obvious reasons. However if you're looking at around 5 people, another alternative is to take 2 cars (better gas efficiency and extra cargo space). This would also help if get a 6th person just because it would help if you're rotating drivers. Also it works great in case you run into car troubles.

    From past experience, BRING A SPARE TIRE!!! Especially if you're in the SOUTH WEST!!! The heat is known to blow up your tires so keep your tire pressure in check. Make sure you're car has an oil change before going. Bring some coolant, rotate your tires and make sure the tire pressure is proper. These are crucial so just do it or you'll end up regretting it. Always bring a sweater and water. Snacks are good. Alot of stuff can happen so just prepare for it. When you get ready to go home, it doesn't hurt to check your tire pressure and coolant levels. Remember if your car messes up you're screwed so take care of it and keep it in proper maintenance. ALSO!!! for cross country purposes, if you're driving up a mountain or an incline, turn off the AC and open the windows!!! This keeps some stress off you engine from overheating (that's the last thing you would want happening).

    Source(s): I've done this before...
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