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How to Plan Cross Country Road Trip: Useful Tips to Follow

How to Plan Cross Country Road Trip: Useful Tips to Follow

A cross-country road trip is a great way to experience the beauty of America and reconnect with nature. Whether you’re planning a trip with friends, family, or your significant other, with careful planning, you can make this journey an unforgettable adventure. Here is a step-by-step on how to plan your own cross-country road trip so you can enjoy the journey without worry or stress.

Think About the Time and Budget for the Trip

When planning your cross-country road trip, consider both time and money to decide on the destination and route.


Decide how long you want to be on the road, and account for unexpected delays. Consider work and family situations and think realistically about how much time you can spend on this journey.


Make sure you have enough money not only for gas and lodging but also for food, entertainment, and other expenses. Consider factors such as extra fees associated with different routes, campsites, and admission costs at national parks or attractions; do some research to make sure you’re prepared for all these costs.

Choose the Destination and Stops

Once you have an idea of your budget and timeframe, decide on the destination. Choosing your destination is an important part of planning any road trip.

Decide the Travel Cities or States

Decide which cities or states you'd like to visit during your journey and make a plan for where you'll stay each night. If you’re up for a more spontaneous journey, consider using cross country road trip maps and making stops at interesting places on your best cross country road trip routes.

Do Attractions Research

Research popular attractions or activities at each stop so that you can make the most of your travels. This includes checking out local attractions such as national parks, museums, restaurants, etc., so that you know what activities are available in each place.

Explore the Local Towns

Consider adding some small towns off the beaten path as well - they often offer unique experiences for you to enjoy different customs and cultures!

Try Multiple Routes

You don’t need to stick to one route either; try taking different highways or back roads when exploring new areas. Unplanned attractions make for more interesting memories.

Make a List of Essentials for the Trip

As you plan your epic road trip across the country, create a comprehensive list of all that is required for your journey. There are some cross country road trip essentials as follows:

1. Map of your route – Make sure you have a detailed map of the areas you plan to visit. Sometimes the GPS on the car cannot go deep into the most real road environment, so prepare a paper map for emergencies.

2. Emergency Kit – Put together flashlights, extra batteries, jumper cables, tire repair supplies, and other emergency items in case of an unforeseen incident.

3. Food and drinks – Bring plenty of snacks and drinks (non-alcoholic if you’re driving cross country) to prevent getting hungry or thirsty throughout the trip.

4. Camping Gear – If you plan on camping during your journey, make sure you bring all necessary gear such as tents, sleeping bags, cooking equipment, etc.

5. Appropriate Clothing – Check the weather forecasts for each destination and make sure you have the right clothing items for any season or climate. Besides, Pack clothes appropriate for different weather conditions: raincoats, hats, sunglasses, etc. Being prepared will ensure that your journey is comfortable regardless of the temperature or climate changes during travel cross country.

6. Portable Power Station - Portable power stations are essential for road trips. It can charge your devices at any time like your smartphones, tablets, cameras, etc. A great example of these portable power stations is the Anker 757 PowerHouse. With 13 ports, this power station can meet all your needs to charge your devices and appliances.

7. First-Aid Kit – A first-aid kit should include bandages, antiseptic wipes, antibiotic ointment, pain reliever, etc. Don't forget your daily medications and vitamins for you and your family.


Traveling across the country by car is an amazing experience that everyone should try at least once in their life! With careful planning, it's possible to make this dream come true without breaking the bank or spending too much time away from home. Take into consideration factors such as budget and desired destinations when making plans; create a list of essentials; then hit the open road! There's nothing quite like starting up an engine in anticipation of all that awaits down winding roads – good luck creating memories on your own incredible cross-country road trip!

FAQ about How to Plan a Cross-Country Road Trip

Below are the additional questions that many people have about the topic of how to plan cross country road trips.

How long should a cross country road trip take?

It depends mainly on your starting point and route. For example, taking a trip coast-to-coast takes approximately 45 hours, equal to six 8-hour days. You have the option of choosing one of four interstates or following in the footsteps of those who ventured across America on U.S highways before you.

If you want to visit all 48 states located within the continental US, you may need to spend around three months traveling on the road.

How much money should you have for a cross country road trip?

This depends on how much you plan to spend on food, lodging, and entertainment. A good rule of thumb is to budget a minimum of $100 per day for food and lodging, plus an additional amount for any extra activities or attractions. However, this can vary depending on your personal spending habits.

How many miles a day should I run for cross country?

Generally speaking, it’s best to keep your daily mileage between 200-300 miles. The amount of miles you can drive per day on a cross-country road trip depends on several factors such as the terrain, traffic conditions, and your own physical condition. The most important thing is to avoid fatigue while still making good progress toward your destination.

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