I like road trips, I also kind of like long road trips, but anything above 10 hours, I get very uncomfortable and bored. Unless the views are breathtaking and you set the right mood in the car, as we did on our road trip from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. That was the best!
The worst journey I ever did was driving from Slovakia to England in September, and that was without any hotels or overnight stops. How many hours did it take exactly? 28. We left my little village on Friday night at 10pm, and we arrived in Derby at 1am on Sunday morning. The worst 28 hours ever. To be honest with you, I did not enjoy it. Four adults, over 40 bottles of wine in the car, a mini-fridge and one Peugeot 206. Not fun.
So, I’m here today, talking about Best Road Trip Tips For a Comfortable Drive, enjoy!
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Best Road Trip Tips For Comfortable Drive
Get enough sleep before you start
This must be number one, no matter what. You can’t drive if you don’t get enough sleep, your brain and reflexes aren’t as quick as when we’re fresh and full of energy and will make driving through unknown roads or countries for 10+ hours hell, even if we shine like sunshine. Plan your sleep accordingly before your journey starts and the number of hours you will be driving. For example, we left on Friday night at 10pm, so I made sure that I went to bed a little later on Thursday night, so I’d sleep until 11am and I napped for about two hours before the drive. Then I jump into the driver seat at 3am and drove all the way till noon.
Wear comfortable clothes and shoes, pack an extra pair of socks
Driving for long hours is all about comfort. I personally hate long-drives in jeans, I prefer leggings or lazy joggings, gym shoes, sports bra (if any bra) and a jumper. Plus, I promise you that on any long journey you’ll meet so many idiot drivers that your heart rate will rise, so sweatproof clothes are even better! I also recommend bringing a spare pair of socks if you know that you will be driving for more than a day. Clean socks – the best feeling ever!
Leave early and plan your stops ahead
It helps to plan your journey and stops ahead of time. It depends on who will be driving and who has energy in the morning and who is a night owl. Take plenty of breaks and don’t push yourself too much. We tried to stop every three hours, but as we were travelling through countries under lockdown, we couldn’t risk it because of the quarantine rules (Covid-19). Some parts of the journey took us about three and a half hours maximum. Plus, leave early or later in the day to avoid rush-hours, especially near city centres.
Bring a travel pillow, blanket and eye mask
If you are travelling with others and you know that you won’t be making any hotel or motel stops, bring a travel pillow, blanket and eye mask. Make your journey as comfortable as you can. Trust me, that eye mask will be handy if you’re driving in the night and then you have to catch up on sleep during the day, especially when the sun is beaming. Or the lights at night are too bright.
Bring healthy snacks and plenty of water
I love snacking when driving, but there is a difference between a melted chocolate bar and grapes, which are easy to grab and won’t leave a mess! Pack a variety of snacks, fruit, vegetables and sandwiches. Plus, doing so you will save yourself a lot of money. When I saw the prices in Germany for hot baguettes and sandwiches, I quickly changed my mind and stuck to the bacon sandwich I’d packed the day before. Also, make sure that you pack plenty of water in a reusable water bottle to refill whenever you can. Staying hydrated is essential. Plus, try not to eat everything while driving, stop, stretch and let the food digest.
Bring an extra pair of contact lenses, eye drops for dry eyes and sunglasses
If you wear contact lenses, make sure you have spares to hand. You will be surprised, but focusing on the road in any weather dries your eyes faster, and contact lenses will become uncomfortable after a few hours. I went through two pair of lenses during our 28 hours journey, and for the last four hours, I was driving from Dover to Derby, I had to switch to glasses. My eyes were dry and sore, and the only thing I wish I’d packed and didn’t were eye drops. Even if you don’t wear contacts, eye drops still help hydrate your eyes. After this road trip, my eyes were so sore, and I had to use warm pressure to make it go away.
Download happy, energetic songs, audiobooks or podcasts
Some people, like my grandparents, like silence while driving. I prefer music. Loud, happy music so I had to stick to my headphones and Spotify. I’m not a big fan of wearing headphones whilst driving because it blocks out too much, so I only had one earpiece in and had it quiet to be able to react in case of an emergency. Happy, energetic songs make the journey fun. You all can sing along and do car-aoke, or in this case, just sing to yourself quietly to keeping yourself awake and sane. Audiobooks and podcasts keep the brain active and engaged, so if you’re not a fan of listening to music while driving, maybe those might be for you?
Would I drive from Slovakia to England again?
Nope. I wouldn’t. I did it once and didn’t enjoy it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I did it but driving in a small car, packed in like sardines isn’t my kind of fun. I only did it because my grandad turned 70 and he really wanted to make this his last long journey by car.
And boy, it was long. I was broken three days after, mentally and physically. I had swollen glands on my eyelid, and my back was killing me (I’m only 170cm tall, yet was still squished). I couldn’t even sleep right for a few days after because every time I closed my eyes, I saw that never-ending road and a steering wheel.
Plus, driving on the motorway and through cities, Brussell especially, isn’t even fun, because there’s hardly anything to look at!
I tried to compile all the best tips I could think of to make your journey more comfortable, but hands down to everybody who does it for a living.
Until next time,
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