2021 is set to be the year of the road trip and we couldn’t be happier. There’s something to be said for a spontaneous getaway – the open road, the joy of the journey and discovering the road less travelled. What’s more, we’ve seen last-minute trips on the rise in case COVID border closures pop in to interrupt our best laid plans. But spontaneous travel doesn’t need to be a stress. In fact, it can deliver a special kind of holiday freedom. And to make it easy for you, we’ve rounded up the best advice for making your last-minute road trip a success!
The number one rule for spontaneous travel is flexibility! Sometimes you’ll get the best deals, find hidden gems waiting to be discovered, and score last-minute availability if you keep an open mind to your options. Try considering destinations you might not have thought of before, places you’ve never been, or somewhere you have previously overlooked. The trick is going for opportunity without rigid planning, so cast your net wide and get in the adventuring spirit. Our new G’day Parks app is your perfect flexible road trip companion. Not sure where to stay? Just open the app and search for accommodation near you to find availability for you to park up for the night.
Choose your travel pals wisely
Here’s the thing about last minute, spur-of-the-moment travel: it’s not for everyone. To get the most out of a spontaneous holiday, you need to choose travel companions who will match your taste for freedom. It doesn’t require much more than a sense of adventure and an open mind, but choose wisely for last-minute road trips as you’re better off with flexible friends than those who prefer to stick to a structured travel itinerary.
Prep for emergencies
Spontaneity is a wonderful thing but there’s some situations where you just don’t want to be caught out. While we’re all for holidays on the fly, a little planning on safety is a must before hitting the open road. We recommend a tool kit, roadside emergency kit including tow ropes, and a first aid kit at a minimum. It’s also worth checking your phone coverage and upgrading or changing your plan if you know you’re heading into service blackspots and want to stay connected.
A good rule of thumb when it comes to road trips is, of course, making sure you’ve got enough fuel to get where you’re going. When you head out to regional locations petrol stations can get few and far between, so keep an eye on your petrol gauge and take advantage of fuelling up before it becomes an emergency. We know one of the biggest costs for road trip can be fuel, but we’ve got your back: G’day Rewards members can download the G’day Parks app to access fuel savings from Shell Coles Express nation-wide.
Pack water and snacks
Fuel for you is just as important as fuel for your car. It can get pretty hot on our Australian roads so make sure you’re staying hydrated with plenty of water – and it won’t hurt to take more than you think you’ll need, especially if your drive will take more than a couple of hours. Road trip snacks are a must, of course, but be mindful of quarantine rules if you’re crossing state borders, especially with fruit and veg. You’re better off keeping to non-perishable snacks and buying your produce locally when you arrive.
Ask a local
When exploring the great outdoors there’s no one better than a local to get advice on the best activities and attractions. If you’re travelling somewhere new, don’t hesitate to get chatting with our park teams or local business owners to get insider tips. From where to land the catch of the day to finding the best brewed coffee in town, no one knows their slice of Australia better than a local.
No, really! There’s so much to explore in this beautiful country of ours that heading off the beaten track and discovering lesser-known destinations is well worth your time. Get lost in sprawling national parks, sultry rainforests, stretches of bright red earth, secluded beaches, charming river townships… the list goes on. Step outside of your comfort zone and say g’day to more of Australia. You won’t regret it.