Reunions are exciting opportunities to reconnect with family, friends, and old acquaintances. But this still requires travel. One of the most affordable forms of reunion travel is on the road. If you’re traveling alone or with your whole family, a long-distance road trip can make a destination out of the journey itself while keeping money where it belongs: in your pocket. Here are a few of the most economical tips for long-distance road trips.

Pack Your Own Snacks

Meals, food, and snacks are items that quickly hike up the price of long-distance road travel. If you want to think about your reunion economically, you should consider packing your own food. Grab a cooler and a bag of ice and fill it with water bottles, sandwiches, veggie bags, and more healthy, invigorating foods. Don’t let fast food stops drain you of money and energy—pack your own snacks before hitting the road.

Try These Healthy Snacks for Family Road Trips (

Rethink Your Driving Style

Whether you’re driving the family sedan or renting an extra-large RV, long-distance driving requires laser-focused attentiveness to the road and your vehicle metrics. While safety is a major concern for drivers with loved ones in tow, so is the cost of gas and wear on the engine.

Don’t forget to adjust your driving style to long-distance highway travel. Instead of engaging and releasing the gas pedal over and over again until your ankle gives out, consider using cruise control and maintaining a steady speed. You should also learn what you need to know about overdrive so you can turn it on while driving at a consistently high speed—using this feature correctly will improve your fuel economy.

Plan Overnight Stays in Advance

If you’re traveling far by road, you’ll need to spend the night somewhere. Some travelers might prefer a laissez-faire approach to overnight accommodations thinking, “I’ll just drive as far as I can and grab a motel when I’m tired.” Though this strategy keeps safety in mind by getting off the road once tired, it doesn’t factor in road trip costs.

You have no bargaining power when you grab any old motel or hotel room and must pay the cost the concierge requests at check-in. Instead, you should plan your travel in advance and book hotel rooms at anticipated stopping points. This way, you’re not beholden to limited availability and jacked-up nighttime prices, and you can book with points at trusted hotels.

With these economical tips for long-distance road trips in mind, you can make the most of your time on the road. Though you can’t anticipate last-minute food or accommodation-related changes, you can make the most budget-friendly reunion travel plans by anticipating your needs every step of the way.