Don’t Let These 5 Habits Ruin Your Roadtrip

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Roadtrip season might be coming to an end, but that doesn’t mean your last few trips have to be tainted by poor habits. Everything from smoking to unchecked spending can make your road trip into a living hell; far from the simple, relaxing experience it’s supposed to be. Whether you’re traveling alone or with loved ones, these five habits can easily ruin the experience.

1. Complaining

Ah yes, the complainer. Surely we’ve all had an experience with a complainer during a road trip. It’s quite obnoxious, and can really take the fun out of any activities you’re doing along the way. Complainers find a way to complain about anything and everything, from the accidental flat tire to the weather to the state of the roads in whatever state you’re driving through. How can you possibly enjoy yourself when you’re surrounded by negativity?

Are you the complainer in the group? If so, maybe it’s time to take a closer look at what’s going on behind the scenes. Do you complain because you’re upset, bored, or just looking to stir the pot (yes, these types do exist)? Getting to the root of the problem can help you stop complaining and enjoy the trip.

Complaints usually stem from a misunderstanding, frustration, or even judgment. Once you address these things and understand their role in how you think, you can effectively address the complaining problem. Think about what it must be like for your fellow travelers to listen to complaining all day. It’s probably exhausting!

2. Smoking

Being in a car with a smoker when you’re a non-smoker can feel like an eternity. It seems like they need to light up every 45 minutes, and the car and everything in it slowly begins to take on the smell of the cigarette, even with the windows down!

Are you the smoker? Have you considered the health impacts of your habit on your fellow travelers? That’s right—you aren’t just putting your own health at risk by smoking inside a vehicle. Even with the windows down, everyone inside is breathing in the toxic fumes from your cigarette.

Cigarettes contain over 7,000 chemicals, many of which are known carcinogens, poisons, or are otherwise toxic to humans. Smoking is the number one risk factor for developing lung disease, and second-hand smoke can play a similar role in non-smokers. The bottom line? You’re endangering everyone in the car when you light up, and you’re reducing the owner’s overall value by damaging the interior.

It’s time to leave cigarettes behind if you want to have better road trips. Opt for an alternative like Black Buffalo chew, nicotine gum, or an e-cigarette.

3. Poor Car Maintenance

If you’re someone who’s always slacking on car maintenance, you’re likely going to pay for it during your road trip. A neglected vehicle is much more likely to break down when it’s being overworked, like it will be when you take that 1,000-mile trip to the Rockies later this Fall.

Maintaining your vehicle’s moving parts ensures that everything runs smoothly and that you’re getting the maximum value out of your investment. You have to remember that owning a vehicle is nothing less than an investment, and, since vehicles start losing value as soon as they leave the lot, it’s crucial that you take care of them. The better the condition of the vehicle, the higher the resale value will be.

Not to mention, vehicles aren’t cheap (or, at least not the good ones). You’ll be spending thousands of dollars in repairs if you don’t take care of the vehicle with regular maintenance. An oil change here, a tire rotation there, and a regular inspection can mean the difference between a costly, miserable trip, and an amazing experience.

4. Trust Your Very Soul To Technology

Remember when we had to use maps to navigate road trips? Neither do I, but there was a time before GPS, and while it may have been inconvenient, the skill of knowing how to effectively read a map is still useful today. You should always keep a roadmap in your car, even if you don’t take frequent road trips, and learn to read it.

Your GPS signal can be lost. Your phone can die. The reptilian overlords could suddenly shut off all technology. The point is that you can’t trust your entire trip to technology, because technology has the potential to fail.

5. I Don’t Need Research

A good way to get lost is to not research where you’re going beforehand. Some people like more spontaneous road trips, and while that’s all fine, it’s still a good idea to at least have a general idea of where you’re going. After all, if you become lost, how will anyone know where to look?

You should also tell someone where you’re going and when you’re expecting to return. This person should (obviously) be someone who isn’t coming with you. Make sure they know as many details as possible, so if something happens, they’ll know what to do.

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