A road trip is the ideal way to travel the country while enjoying a few adventurous side stops along the way. On long road trips, getting adequate rest is not only critical for safe driving, but it will also provide you with the energy you need to truly enjoy your adventure. As you know, cars packed for traveling can be cramped spaces, yet these tips will help you enjoy a peaceful snooze anywhere you rest your head.
Elevate the Floor
Depending upon how many people are accompanying you on your adventure, it may not be possible to stretch out in the back seat. For sleeping in a sitting position, the ideal place is the front passenger seat since it has the most leg room. Once you have claimed your space, add stuffed duffel bags, sleeping sacks or any other cushion you can find to bring the floor up to a comfortable resting place for your feet.
Recreate Your Bedtime Routine
It may be next to impossible to fully recreate your bedtime ritual on the road, but even brushing your teeth or washing your face can cue your body that it is time to rest. If you find it hard to relax, try reading a book or turning on your favorite music to put your mind at ease.
Bring Comfortable Bedding
Space may be tight in a car, yet a few comfort items are essential for getting adequate rest. A lightweight blanket can help to ease the chill on winter trips, or serve as a source of privacy for covering your head. Pillows are also essential, and a travel-sized one can be used to support your head on the window or provide a space-saving solution for avoiding neck cramps in the back seat. Just make sure that the pillow you bring along (see this Pillow Guru guide for some good advice) supports your neck while adding a touch of cushion that can recreate the feeling of your personal bedroom.
Cover the Windows
Whether you are sleeping while someone else drives or you pull over to a rest area, you will need a way to block out the sun and ensure privacy. Roll your window down slightly and tuck a towel or blanket into the space so that it hangs down. Sunglasses and a hat can also help you to create a darker environment during daytime naps.
Practice Safe Parking
If you will be spending the night in your car alone, then one of the most important things you can do for peaceful sleep is to find a safe place to park. Designated overnight parking spaces are located along many major highways; however, they may not always be possible to access. If you must sleep in a parking lot or other public space, check for signs prohibiting overnight parking. Then, make sure to lock your doors and roll the window down a half-inch for ventilation. Always make sure to turn your car off, and use blankets for warmth if it is necessary.
With these strategies in place, enjoying a few minutes or hours of restful sleep will be a breeze. When you wake up, try to perform a few of your normal morning rituals to help revive your energy. Stretch, enjoy your favorite morning beverage and get ready to greet the day with newfound energy that will refresh the next leg of your road trip adventure.