Why a Road Trip is the Perfect Way to Travel, even if you Don’t Think So

Staff Writer

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Most people love to travel. The adventure of seeing a new place, meeting new people, and trying new food is always an alluring idea. There are so many people in this world who have such a passionate sense of wanderlust, and are constantly itching to see more of this amazing world. Of course, for most people, travel means planes, and that can be a hassle.

You don’t always have to travel by plane, unless you really want to or you’re trying to cross the ocean in a timely manner. If you’re not interested in flying, then you should seriously consider the benefits of a road trip. It really allows you to experience the travelling aspect of a trip, instead of just the destination.

Go Sightseeing

The view from a plane seat can be pretty neat, so long as it’s a clear day and you’re sitting in the window seat! Even then, you see the ground laid out like a bird would. That’s pretty neat, but you miss a lot of the details. When you drive, however, you get the opposite experience. You can watch the scenery go by and take in the views. You can choose where to stop and take pictures, or simply choose a more scenic route than the one you had originally planned. After all, there are scenic routes all over the country, and with so much to see, there’s no sense in skipping over all that beautiful land.

Save Some Cash

Compared to a flight, filling up your tank is significantly cheaper! Think about it – most airline tickets are going to cost anywhere from $200-$400 each. For a family of four, that’s $800-$1,600 just for traveling! Think about how much gas you could buy with that money! If the average fill-up costs about $40, then you could fill up five times (that’s assuming an average cost of $2.22 per gallon, and an 18 gallon tank). And the average tank of gas will take you around 200 -- 400 miles, so you can travel for 1,000 miles for the price of one cheap ticket! Keep in mind, that’s on the low end. If your car gets better gas mileage, you’ll get much farther.

There are a few areas where you have to be a bit careful, like getting caught on turnpikes or ending up needing to feed a meter, but a little bit of planning can save all that hassle. Knowing which areas have the most turnpikes or taking the time to find a parking garage can both be lifesavers if you’re low on cash! Then you can take all that money you’re saving and use on your actual vacation, not the travel.

Have an Adventure

Part of the fun of driving is that you really do get to have an adventure! When you travel by plane, there’s a certain expectation that everything will go smoothly. Part of that is because we’re constantly having to go through security, and part of it is that we’re paying for a service – someone else is a professional at this, so it really should go well. When you’re diving, well, things can get a little more interesting.

Wrong turns can take you down backcountry roads you never knew existed, and getting lost can make you new friends if you do manage to stop and ask directions. This is especially fun if you’re really out in the country and you don’t have any cell service, and it’s a great time to practice your people skills! Plus, you really never know what you’ll see when you drive. Santa riding a motorcycle, 12 dogs in a van with their heads out the window, or maybe a sudden onslaught of nude cyclists are all possibilities! Some are a bit more welcome than others, but that’s part of the adventure!

Eat All the Food!

This is easily one of the biggest bonuses over flying – you can choose where to eat! You’re not stuck with microwaved airplane food or a refrigerated sub from a vending machine. There’s a reason that famous joke starts off with “So, what’s the deal with airplane food?”

But if you’re driving, you can roll down the windows and follow the smells. You can try the local food areas are famous for – a deep dish pizza, philly cheesesteaks, fusion cuisine, New England clam chowder, or even bagels in NYC! Sometimes you get especially lucky and you discover a little hidden gem in the middle of nowhere, with the best something-or-other you’ve ever had (bonus points if it’s waffles)!

Save the Planet

Really, there are few things everyone does on a regular basis that hurts the planet more than flying. Rocket launches probably do some damage, but they aren’t exactly an every day occurrence. Now, driving still isn’t the greenest option since public transit still wins in the locomotion category, but especially if you drive a hybrid car, you’ll be putting less out into the environment than a huge 747.

So next time you’re planning your vacation, try working out the details of driving instead of flying. You might be surprised at just how much fun it can be to make the travel part of your trip, instead of just a hurdle.

Kacey Mya Bradley is a lifestyle blogger for "The Drifter Collective."  Throughout her life, she has found excitement in the world around her.  Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations, cultures, and styles, while communicating these endeavors through her passion for writing and expression. Her love for the world around her is portrayed through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.

More readings: 

The 16 Best Winter Drives in the U.S.

The Best States to See on Your Summer Road Trip and the Ones to Avoid

30 Adventure Destinations for 2016

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