This post is in partnership with Phillips 66 ®. All opinions are my own.
Our new normal is here to stay, and as much as I love staying home with my little family, I’m also ready to get back to a few of our summertime traditions. One of those is getting back out on the road with a road trip! One trip that we always take is a visit to 30A in Florida. Last week we went on our first road trip of the year and while it was much needed, we also were smart about safety and security with our trip. Today, I wanted to share 10 tips that we implemented to road trip as safely as possible. With a little planning and some help from our friends at Phillips 66, we had the best vacation ever!
Before we head out, we like to stop at Phillips 66 and fill up the tank for our trip. Sometimes, I may need a fountain soda or maybe a bingo lottery ticket. (It’s a road trip tradition!) Make sure your windshield is clean, tires have air and you’re set to go! We also like to remain consistent and stop at Phillips 66 locations along the way on our trips. I’ve also added the My Phillips 66 App to my phone for mobile payments. Not only does this limit my contact with external surfaces in-store and at the pump, but it also provides a discount on my gas*.
*15 cents off per gallon (up to 30 gallons) per fill-up at participating Phillips 66 locations through 9/30/2020.
Pack a Cooler
Depending on where you are traveling, your typical locations may not be open or available for meals. We also noticed that drive-thru lines were incredibly long. You don’t want to add an extra 30 minutes to your drive just sitting to eat. To combat that, and to save time and money, pack a cooler of all of your favorites. We focused on items we could easily take and toss for easy cleanup. Don’t forget to pack some wipes to clean fingers and you are back on the road in no time.
Planning your stops can be incredibly helpful. If you’re needing a gas fill up, you can use the My Phillips 66 App to search for the nearest gas station on your route. Planning your route will also ensure you’re not stuck in the middle of nowhere without an option. I always know that stopping at a Phillips 66 will have a clean restroom if we need a quick break. Did I mention that Phillips 66 has hand sanitizer at the pump? What a great service!
Find Rest Areas
For us, Rest Areas are our favorite places to stop. The restrooms are cleaned regularly and generally, there is outdoor space to stretch your legs and some have playgrounds that may open depending on your current state and local ordinances. These are also great places to stop for a picnic lunch. Be sure to research the Department of Transportation in your area for the latest updates on rest area closures.
Drive Straight Through
If you have the capability of doing so, drive straight through to your destination. Historically, we like to stop on our trips for a rest and to enjoy a few of our favorite cities on our way to and from our vacation destination. If you can, take turns with others driving to ensure you do not have burnout and take plenty of rest breaks. Never a good idea to drive overly tired.
Pack Kid Activities
For every road trip we take, I always pack a goodie basket of activities for Hattie. We typically allow screen time for rides, but for long trips, we do need some breaks. I spend $20 and fill the bucket with goodies I find from the Dollar Store. Be sure to hide some activities away for the ride back home. This trip included Sticker Books, Doodle Pads, Books, Coloring Pages, favorite treats that won’t melt (Like Sweettarts), and small crafts that she would enjoy doing and not make a big mess. I found a cute bracelet making kit that was a huge hit!
Understand State & Local Requirements for Masks and Social Distancing
With our new normal, it seems like information is changing on a daily basis in some areas. Wherever you are headed, be sure to check out the local requirements for masks, social distancing, capacity requirements, and curfews. Knowing those expectations upfront will save you time and energy from planning an activity that you can’t do, or are uncomfortable with.
Pack Extra – Wipes, Masks, Hand Sanitizer
I feel like I have a newborn all over again, but I also want to feel prepared. Packing antibacterial wipes and hand sanitizer is a great way to wipe down surfaces that are new to you and even your vehicle. We wiped down the picnic benches for lunch, doorknobs and car doors, and even added an extra barrier of security with hand sanitizer after restroom breaks. Be sure to pack masks and maybe a few extra. You never know when you may need an extra. I like to keep the masks in small plastic bags and use them to store the dirty masks. Don’t forget if you’re gone for a while to bring detergent to wash your masks, or plan on disposable options.
Identify Local Hospital or Urgent Care
In the event you would get sick while you are on your trip, it’s a great idea to identify local hospitals, urgent care clinics in case you’ll need assistance. I would even go a step further and investigate testing facilities if you are concerned with exposure on your trip. Reach out to your insurance provider to see if they can assist with locations and recommendations.
Quarantine If Necessary
Depending on where you live, your state may require you to quarantine depending on where you went on your trip. Be sure to check your state and local requirements as well as your employer for actionable items. In our case, we were not required to quarantine, but are making smart choices and limiting our contact post-trip for safety.
Overall, I believe that you can still find a little summer fun this summer and do it in a safe and smart way. With these tips and some help from Phillips 66, I felt confident in heading back out on the road again.
Have you traveled this summer?