Most of us have dreamed of taking a road trip at some point in our lives, but how many have actually gone through with it? We picture a Thelma and Louise-esque escapade, minus the being-on-the-run part, of course. The witty camaraderie, sleeping in strange motels, seeing the sights, just you and the open road. Of course, life on the road is a little different to what we see in the movies. Road trips are awesome, but they come with some downsides. 

Why Take A Road Trip When Abroad?

If you love to travel and you are planning to visit a country that you have never been to, a road trip is an amazing way to see it. You have an on-the-ground view of life in this new place, and have a first hand view of the landscapes you’ll be driving through. Hiring a car is also a cost-effective way to get around a country, and allows you to take your time, stop as long as you want in each place, and have an overall more personalized experience than if you took a guided tour.

Image credit.

What Are The Risks of Road Tripping Abroad?

Like any abroad trip, there are risks that you should take into account before you go ahead with the trip. Here are the key things you should know about. 

  1. Different laws. Unlike driving in your home country, there will be different laws when it comes to operating a car, crossing borders and driving in general. This could be something as simple as driving on the opposite side of the road, but could also cover differing speed limits, insurance law, licencing and more. When planning a road trip in an unfamiliar place, remember to read up on these points to make sure you are within the law.
  2. Breakdown and maintenance. If the situation arises in which your hired car breaks down or requires maintenance, do you know what to do? Most rental companies cover this kind of thing within the rental agreement, but if you hire from the wrong place without reading the smallprint, you could wind up footing an expensive bill. Make sure to double check that your car rental company covers breakdown and maintenance costs.
  3. Collisions. The worst case scenario when taking a road trip would be if you were involved in a collision of some kind. The procedure for post-collision may be different from your home country, so researching the correct procedure before starting your trip is important. If you are involved in a collision you will need to contact elite car accident lawyers and your insurance company too, so have these phone numbers in your phone before you get going.

Safety. In every country in the world, there are safer places for tourists to visit alone, and places that should probably be avoided if you don’t know the area, or even the language. When planning a roadtrip in a foreign country, pick your route, research it and stick to it like glue. The gung-ho approach might sound like fun, but if you drive into an unsafe area or get completely lost you could be putting your safety at risk. 

Basic language skills. If taking a trip in a foreign country, particularly if you are driving across it, make sure to pick up a phrase book and learn some basic words and phrases of the country’s language. If you need to ask for directions, get gas, or book into a hotel, these will come in handy.

What Are The Best Countries To Drive Across?

You might be thinking, which countries are the best to drive across? Here is a list of suggestions for amazing road trip destinations from around the world!

The USA. If you aren’t from the USA – or even if you are! – this is the perfect place. From the rockies, to the desert, to deep, dense forests, to booming cities, the USA’s landscape is vast and varied. 

Italy. Idyllic and sun-soaked, the landscapes of Italy will take your breath away. Italy is a small country which can be easily driven across; from the Northern mountains to the blistering south coasts, you’ll have the time of your life. 

Ireland. The Irish landscape is nothing short of epic, with staggering cliffs, green as far as the eye can see, with crashing waves to top it all off. There’s no better place to drive across the land, clear your head, and be at one with nature.

Final Thoughts

No matter where you go for your road trip, use this essential guide to combat any risk factors before you set off!

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Tam Warner

Award Winning Travel Journalist and Blogger, writing about Eclectic Travels in the Empty Nest! From scuba to luxury cruises to kayaking to expeditions, Tam is ready to go! Contact me at travelswithtam@gmail.com

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Tam Warner
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