Safety Tips for Your Next Road Trip

We’re all itching to travel again. But even after stay-at-home orders are lifted, you might be reluctant to hop on a plane. Car travel can be just as exciting. Bonus, gas prices are at notable lows.

So, are you ready to plan an epic road trip you can look forward to? Rest assured, the day you can hit the pavement will come soon enough.

Here are tips on not only how to plan your next vacation, but how to travel safely.

Choose Spread-out Locations

It might be a while before we’re able to visit, or feel comfortable with, crowded festivals or dense cities. Instead, choose hiking, waterfront and outdoorsy trips that will allow you to distance yourself from others while still fulfilling your itch to explore.

Check out this guide to the ultimate National Park road trip. Or visit our Road Trip Planning Page to get ideas on where to go.

Plan Your Route

With select businesses opening in waves, it’s essential to plan ahead and know the best road trip routes and places to stop (or not stop). Check out AAA’s map of COVID-19 travel restrictions for U.S. and Canada. And if you need maps or a TourBook, order online and we’ll mail them to you directly.

Not sure how to plan a route? Let a AAA Travel Professional create a TripTik routing guide for you with comprehensive directions. Just fill out our simple form, calling out where you want to go and if there are specific things you want to avoid or include along your drive. Our auto travel experts will mail out customized routing materials in 7-10 days.

Wear Protective Gear, Follow Guidelines

It’s smart to continue following social distancing guidelines and use protective gear. That means maintaining the recommended six feet of distance between yourself and others, wearing a face mask in public and washing your hands regularly.

Stay Safe at the Gas Station

Gas stations are high-risk areas due to the nature of rotating customers. But following basic safety guidelines can keep you safe. Don’t touch your face, wash your hands immediately after filling up and pay at the pump to avoid unnecessary interaction.

Pack Appropriately

Many families choose road trips because of their affordability. Rather than going out to every meal, you can pack a cooler for the car and bring your favorite snacks. This is a particularly smart choice when trying to maintain social distance. Restaurants may be part of the first wave of businesses to reopen, but they will still have distance and capacity rules to help keep patrons safe.

Stop for food where you feel comfortable, following guidelines, but pack the majority of your food for convenience and safety purposes. Here are simple food ideas for the car:

  • Chopped veggies with hummus
  • Sandwiches and wraps
  • Pasta salads
  • Fruit
  • Beef jerky
  • Chips, crackers or pretzels
  • Granola bars
  • Assorted nuts

And don’t forget to pack napkins, paper towels, toilet paper, wet wipes, soap, hand sanitizer and garbage bags. These items are in short supply and it is wise to travel with extra to take into rest stops – just in case.

Give Your Vehicle a Tune Up

For uninterrupted and safe travel, make sure your vehicle is in good working order. Bring it to a AAA Car Care Plus for a quick maintenance appointment. Check tire pressure, tread levels, oil levels, wiper blades, and fluid levels. Ensure you have any necessary repairs completed before you hit the road.

And don’t forget to carry your AAA card with you and/or download the AAA mobile app just in case you need emergency roadside assistance.

Consider Renting or Buying an RV

Recreational vehicles (RVs) are popular for family vacations and long road trips. If stay-at-home orders lift, but you are still wary of public hotels (or simply want to save money or experience camping) then RVs may be the perfect choice. Self-contained, they offer unexposed travel with comfortable sleep and living accommodations.

Read more about our RV coverage options.

Start Planning Your Dream Road Trip Now

Reach out to our travel agents for guidance on building the road trip of your dreams. We can assist you with choosing a destination and building your route, and help you find potential savings.