Tech Essentials to Plan a Memorable Road Trip

There is a well formed plan, behind every unforgettable road-trip 

Planning for that perfect road trip could get overwhelming and daunting. Sharing my tried-and-tested recipe after distilling down my learnings of more than 50 road trips in the last few years.

Step 1 – Choose the right destination

Enroute to Hot Springs Mountain Tower, AR

This seemingly trivial step could be the most time consuming. First, find your reasons to travel and the capacity to drive to whittle it down to the right options. I go for following attributes for any place – nature, adventure and touristy features and always keep my drives limited to a single day.  Check below for getting more ideas:

Step 2 – Find the right accommodation

View from the backyard of the cottage I stayed at Hot Springs, AR

I go for cottages from Airbnb or Vrbo, period. If you value experiences more than the opulence of a x-star hotel, look no further than the vacation homes. I would stay at a hotel only if it is an emergency.

Tip: Pay a lot of emphasis on liberal cancelation policies during the bookings, in respect of Murphy’s law.

Our “backyard” at Smokey Mountains National Park

Southern wit at full throttle, at a Chattanooga cottage

I almost always plan a road-trip with multiple other families so here’s my cheatsheet when it comes to technology-

•  I use shared Google Docs to collaborate with other trip members to split the work and efficiently share the progress with all.

•  I use Google Maps Timeline feature to automatically log my travel times, places I visited and the like. 

•  Check TollGuru and make sure you have the right car tag (I-Pass/EZ Pass etc.) to breeze through the tollways without worrying about the fines.

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•  If you are going in multiple cars, enable Location sharing between friends, to efficiently share your road trip progress. I use Google Maps for the same and find it the most reliable.

•  If you are doing trails/hikes, I would highly recommend AllTrails. Losing your way during a trail could be very harrowing/frustrating experience. I have been using AllTrails Pro (which gives you ability to download offline maps) for many years now and would call it an indispensable tool. It helped me immensely in places such as the Endless Wall trail in WV, Cherokee Falls trail in TN, Lover’s Leap trail in AR, Wanatee Park trail in IA, Trail of the old Oaks in IL when I was looking for directions and there was no one to ask.

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Step 3 – For emergency

Last and the most important, run through this checklist and prepare your self for the unknown.

Did this help you to plan your own perfect road trip? If yes, please share about your feedback in the comments section or shoot an email to me at

Happy Road-tripping!

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