How to plan the ultimate road trip across the USA

A road trip through the US is a fun experience. This guide provides practical tips for planning the ultimate holiday to the USA.
A road trip through the US is a fun experience. This guide provides practical tips for planning the ultimate holiday to the USA.


A road trip through the US is a fun experience. Whether you want to explore nature or man-made wonders, there is much to see. But if you choose to travel to the USA with your partner, it is essential to be well prepared. You don’t want to get stuck in the snow or miss the best stops to align the way. This guide provides practical tips for planning the ultimate holiday to the USA, so do not miss them!

Gather the needed documents

Before you hit the road, ensure you have all the necessary documents. While your driving license is needed, things are different if you aren’t an American citizen.

Most states will accept driving licenses from most countries. However, some might require an international driving license. Check the specific laws for the countries you will be going through. While insurance is also a must, you must have a valid passport. Citizens of some countries will be required to get a visa, so check if yours is on the list. 

Get a suitable vehicle

The vehicle choice depends on the length of your road trip. The US highways are well-maintained, so you are good to go. But make sure to have the right vehicle for your destination.

Cruising along the coast would be ideal in a convertible sports car. However, this isn’t a suitable choice for driving along the mountains. A car or an SUV would be a better pick, but you can also go with a small truck.

How long does a cross-country road trip take?

The length of your voyage depends on how many stops you take. The shortest itinerary ranges from four to six days, which includes about eight to ten hours of driving per day. Therefore, you will be obligated to make fewer stops along the way.

If you aren’t limited with time, you can drive only a few hours per day. Also, you can stay for a couple of days to explore one location. Your road trip would take a couple of weeks in such a case.

Accommodation options

Many might believe that a road trip through the US means staying in small motels. However, this isn’t the most feasible option of them all. 

The accommodation choice depends on your preferences. Campsites are perfect for travelers who want to explore nature and national parks. In such cases, make sure to check the local rules since roadside camping isn’t legal everywhere. 

Small hotels are affordable and comfortable if you prefer to explore the cities. Look for a location that allows you to take different day trips.

When is the best time for a cross-country road trip?

The US is huge, so that you can encounter different weather conditions on your way. For example, let’s say you’re traveling in December. Idaho and New York might not be the perfect destinations since you can encounter icy roads. However, Arizona and Hawaii don’t have that problem.

If you’re driving through the Gulf Coast, remember that the heavy summer rains can be a problem. A road trip through the Rocky Mountains in May can surprise you with snow since spring snow is frequent. 

Spring and fall are excellent choices for a road trip across the US. Nevertheless, research and learn more about the specific weather conditions in the areas you plan to visit. 

Be mindful of the network

Some parts of the US are out of network coverage. Some deserts in the southwest, Utah or Mexico, won’t have signals so you will be unreachable. Make sure to plan this and notify your family and friends. Also, you can rent an additional GPS navigation system since phones won’t work. 

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