The best cars for a road trip aren’t just the most comfortable, the best organized, or those that get-up-and-go faster than anyone else on the highway. They’re also accessible. Not every family can afford to buy a new vehicle before heading out on a weeklong drive. Not every family can afford a weeklong rental either, so let’s take a look at the best card for a road trip that might be available to you.
Should You Rent a Car for a Road Trip?
If possible, you should absolutely rent the best car for a road trip available in your area. Be sure to check out rental deals, like Enterprise’s weekend rental program. To rent a car, you’ll need a credit card (or a cash deposit and references). If you don’t have a credit card already, it’s worth it to put a few hundred down on a secure card. Most rental companies place a hold worth 2x the amount of your rental on your account and then settle it once you bring the car back.
Do You Need Car Rental Insurance and Other Extras?
Travel insurance often covers any issues you’ll have with a rental on-the-road. Many credit cards, roadside assistance memberships, bank memberships, and the like offer travel insurance as a free bonus. Some traditional car insurance plans have a free or cheap rental add-on as well. Before you opt into a car rental company’s expensive daily plan, check out your other options. Also make sure you take before and after pics of your rental to avoid any bogus damage claims.
Which Types of Cars Are Best for a Road Trip?
The type of road trip you’re taking will have a big impact on which vehicle is best for you. Traveling in a big group? You’ll want the space of a minivan or larger SUV. A sporty drop-top might be a better option for a girl trip or day trip for your anniversary. For long-haul trips across several states, a hybrid could wind up paying for itself.
What if Renting a Car Doesn’t Work for Your Road Trip?
That’s fine. You can use the following tips to make sure you’re taking the best options available to you.
What Are the Best New Cars to Buy for Road Trip Fans?
Unless you already have a road tripping habit, don’t base your car buying decisions on that possibility. Road trips are like writing books–everyone plans to have one someday, but few people make good on it. Buy a car based on the needs you already have to get the most value.
That said, if you already travel a lot in the car, here are the top options for different types of road trippers:
Cars for 6+ People
Toyota Highlander hybrid
Cars for 3+ People
Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
Cars for 2 People
These cars are comfortable, roomy, safe, and perform well on the road and at the gas tank. Those are the features to look for in any road tripping wagon though, so you can apply it to your purchases in the future regardless of which makes and models are available.
What are your favorite cars for a road trip?