According to a recent Lottoland study of bucket lists, going on a road trip is one of the most popular activities around, with many people dreaming of setting off to see the world with just a car and a suitcase.
For many people driving across America is the dream, while others set off across continental Europe. If you are planning to undertake a road trip, what are the pros and cons of this?
Pro: Freedom To Explore
One of the great advantages of travelling by car is the freedom to pick where you go next. You can turn off whenever you want to admire a vista, change course suddenly on a whim, or just make the most of cheap accommodation by stopping off in a cheap campsite, or simply pitching a tent by the side of the road.
When driving across Europe you’ll often stumble across picturesque little towns or amazing scenery that would never be seen by someone going inter-railing for example.
Breaking down abroad is a miserable experience, and after a few weeks of hard driving any car is going to be at risk of a malfunction.
Being stuck by the side of the road back home is difficult enough, but thousands of miles from home is ever trickier, especially if there is a language barrier.
This means you need to prepare your route and organize foreign breakdown cover, it’s expensive but well worth it.
Pro: No Baggage Restrictions
Want to pack a tent? Take your whole wardrobe? With your own transport you’re not limited to aeroplane luggage restrictions, or what you can carry on your back.
A lot of road trippers opt to pack a tent, so they can be flexible with accommodation, while others, particularly those travelling with kids, might want to take activities such as sports gear or bikes, which would be impossible without your own mode of transport.
Ever tried to park your car in a capital city? Yeah, it’s not fun. You’re liable to pay extortionate fees for a spot, if you can find a parking space at all. What’s more, if you’re planning to stay a few nights the cost of parking could be as much as your hotel. No jokes.
While it’s possible to dump your car in a park and ride, it’s not always easy to find one, and if you have a long way to travel from your car to your accommodation, you may regret having brought a car full of items.