From the very beginning, we have been travelling by car. We had 25 years old Renault that surprised everybody who meets us. From year to year, it broke more and more often. I remember our last journey by Renault very well, even now when I write about this car I feel sadness - this car means a lot for me, it opens a world of travelling, marvellous places and desire to investigate more and more.
We went to Switzerland - country with many mountains. Our Renault was too old to ride those roads. Every half an hour we had to stop and cool the engine. When we finally reached the Dixence Dam - tallest gravity dam in the world we sighed with relief. But after the very interesting excursion inside the Dam and walking around in the area with marvellous views, our car refused to wind up. We didn’t know what to do and it was almost evening, so we decided to spend time in the mountains in the car and solve the problem in the morning.
Of course we were nervous how we will continue travelling on such car, but in the morning we solved the problem (I didn’t want to go into details here as I didn’t understand what was wrong, my friend took two wirings and joined them and after this car started :) But after that trip we decided that we need new car… Now we have Logan MCV where we could sleep and carry a lot of things.
I got used to travelling by car a lot and it was very hard for me to dare to travel without it. But after we did it I realized that travelling without car differs a lot, but had many advantages. This article is about advantages of travelling by car, so let’s start!
- You are free to decide when and where to go
There is no need to hurry up for train or bus. You could wake up whenever you want and drive as much as you want.
- Your travel needs much less planning
Our last trips by car were lack of planning. All we made at home was gathering the places of interest that we want to visit. We made planning only several days in advance and only if we wanted to book the hotel. It gives you the feeling of freedom to stay longer if you like the place and leave earlier if you don’t.
Instead, I prepared for our trip to India for hours and hours. We booked every hotel, bought all tickets for trains and buses, planned every day in details. It is really very time demanding. I remembered it took several months for us to plan that trip carefully.
- You may spend less money for food
As I’ve already wrote in my article about “How to save money on food while travelling” car may save many dollars for you as you could buy food in the supermarkets in the county side where prices are much lower.Our delicious dinner in France. I am afraid to think how much it would cost in restaurant :)
Also travelling by car allows you to cook the food by yourself as you may bring oven and live in campsites. There is no need to go to expensive restaurants; you may cook delicious grilled vegetables and sausages instead!
- You may spend less money for accommodation
When travelling by car you may live in campsites (if you travel in Europe, USA, Australia or some countries in South America). Campsites are at least half much cheaper that the cheapest hotel. If you still want to live in the hotels you may choose cheaper ones (but not worse!) on the country sides.If the weather is nice, campsite is even better than hotel. Do you want to live with sea view under the pine trees?
The only problem with car occurred when you want to visit big city. First of all it is usually problem to park the car, and secondly, if you want to spend the time in that city you will probably want to stay in the hotel in the center of the city where parking places are very expensive and limited.Wild camping in France.
We usually check carefully whether hotel had the parking places if book in the city center. Sometimes we stayed not in the very center but somewhere near the metro station for example.
- You may visit much more places of interest
Many places of interesting (ruins, museums, mountains, etc) are situated far away from roads with frequent public transport and some are even not accessible by public transport at all.Cemetery of old cars in Belgium.
Car allows you to visit as much places of interest as you want and wherever you want. You will spend much less money to visit all you want by car than by public transport.
- You may take much more things with you
When we go travelling by car we take everything we might need. We take our small refrigerator and we have cold beer whenever we want. My friend installed solar battery on the roof of our car – so we could charge laptops and mobile phones if it is sunny, even if we don’t drive the car.
We bring electric oven to cook and all utensils we might need for cooking. By the way, oven warmed us many times. In Iceland we lived in tent and heat inside with oven. In our latest journey we lived in the very-very cold room in the hotel in Bulgaria (it was already cold outside but the heating season has not started yet- so we used our oven to heat the room.
We also take our roller-skates and clothes for mountains trekking.
- You feel much more safer in the car
It may occur than your travelling turns off to the unsafe places with stray dogs or unfriendly people. It was several times when I was really glad to be inside the car.
By the way this was one of the main reasons why we rent a car when we first visited Thailand. That was probably our mistake, but I felt much calmer when think about exploring Asia by car for the first time.
Frankly speaking I was afraid of traveling without car in those days and also I was afraid of Asia too. I am so glad that now I change my mind about both of that aspect, however car gives you the feeling of security.
- Your budget may significantly decrease if divide expenses
Imagine four of you are travelling, you decided to rent a car instead of using public transport. And even if renting car and paying for fuel may turn out into quite much money, if there are four of you and you divide all expenses for four persons – it will be cheaper for sure.Our renting car in Iceland.
However, when travelling around Iceland there were two of us and we rented the cheapest possible car and it was great decision as public transport in Iceland is very expensive.