After going on a long road trip holiday, I have collected some tips for you. Let me know if you find it useful.
- Printout all the e-bookings. That way you don’t have to worry about dying batteries and dropping your device.
- Cigarette lighter USB ports. This is a life and ear saver. Keeps whiny passengers quiet. If necessary, there is the cigarette lighter extension cord. Don’t worry the circuit is fused at 16A. You are not going to blow anything.
- Google Waze. Helps you to navigate through traffic when mobile or cell data is available. If you are driving through the mountains, prepare to use alternatives.
- GPS navigators beat smartphone apps when there is poor cell reception.
- Check your smartphone compatibility with the country’s network.
Chances are your phone is not fully compatible, eg XiaoMi may not have all bands. It can take valuable seconds for the phone to cycle through the different communication protocol. If possible just select one protocol, eg WCDMA or LTE, not WCDMA/LTE. Otherwise, the phone will be stuck searching for fastest protocol, LTE. All this is happening while you are blowing past the exit.
- Spare change for tolls. No magic here.
- A 4 door sedan car in Asia can take 2 large suitcases only. If there are 4 large suitcases, consider a bigger vehicle.
- If you intend to tow a trailer or caravan, watch this.
- When first taking over the rental car, take photos of the exterior, license plate and odometer. Do the same before you return. Remember to fill up!
- Check the route between the start and destination before setting off. This will give you a general feel for the route. Prevent freaking out, if you are still on the right road. Some highways have off ramps very far apart, will require additional routing to get to your destination.
- At the various attractions, check in via social media or Google maps. It helps to collect the points of your trip.