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How to plan for your European road trip

Disclaimer: This is a PR collaboration post 

The weather is absolutely dismal so if you’re thinking ahead to sunny foreign holidays now’s the time to start thinking about taking some time out in the new year. Taking a road trip is a great way to take a break from the norm and see a range of places all on one holiday. It’s also a good way to spend time as a family from planning your route and playing games in the car during your journey to experiencing new places together.

One of the best routes to take for a road trip in Europe starts in the beautiful French Riviera, where you’ll see how the other half live as it’s a place largely frequented by the rich and famous. Here you’ll begin your road trip, taking in the glorious views of stunning French countryside along gorgeous mountain roads.

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Planning your route

This circular route will begin by taking you north towards Embrun – a medieval French town close to two impressive national parks. Take some time to explore the natural landscapes and stunning mountain passes.

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The next destination en route is the picturesque village of Samoens located on the French/Swiss border. This is a popular ski resort – especially in the winter. You’ll then cross the border into Switzerland and enjoy the sights and sounds of bustling Geneva.

Head to the peaceful city of Lucerne to discover the rich history and culture or for a more active stay, plan a stay in Interlaken – considered a hive of activity for adrenaline junkies. Once you’ve ended your stay in Switzerland, you’ll head south to Italy and admire the stunning views of Lake Como for a taste of peace and tranquillity (and fabulous Italian cuisine).

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The city of Turin has a livelier atmosphere as it’s a much larger city – this will be the last destination during your trip before heading back to the French Riviera.

Italian tolls are levied on the majority of motorways. Payment is made either in cash or via debit/credit cards from Visa, Eurocard and MasterCard. Car Hire Expert Mike Callaghan for Argus Car Hire commented: “Only one in four petrol stations are open 24 hours a day on Sundays and public holidays. On roads in built-up areas, parking is only allowed on the right-hand side if there is two-way traffic. On one-way streets, you can park on either side providing a space of at least 10ft is left”.

How to plan

If you’re not the planning type, you might prefer to just get in the car and go – staying wherever you like, when the moment takes you. Alternatively, you might like to plan your trip before you go, preparing an itinerary ensuring you have adequate time to enjoy your road trip at your own pace.

There’s a misconception that road trips are a cheap way to holiday, and while this might be true in comparison with more resort-based holidays, you’ll be spending a lot of cash on fuel and hotels. It’s worth putting together a budget to make sure you’re not stressing about cash while you’re away, accounting for food and meals as well as emergency cash in case you get lost.

Even if you’ve planned your route, it’s worth taking a map or GPS with you just in case you do get lost, or fancy taking a more scenic route rather than the autoroutes and motorways.

Make sure you’ve got plenty of in car entertainment, including great tunes and audiobooks as well as games you and the family can play together. If you’re planning an itinerary, make sure you include plenty of rest-breaks so that you see plenty of the countryside en route and aren’t limited to ten hour car journeys every day.

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