Driving to Florida from Canada is not an easy thing to tackle for the first-timer. It is, after all, a 22-hour(+) drive. It isn’t for everyone so, here are points to consider before you decide if you should hit the road or if you are better off taking a 4-hour flight instead.
1. How long can you physically drive?
I’m lucky because my husband loves to drive. His limit is about 16 hours with just a few breaks for gas/restroom and food. Be honest with yourself – are you tired and bored after 4 hours? How about 2 hours? Do the math. The more times you take rest breaks and switch drivers the longer the trip is going to take.
Here is a link to a driving time calculator that you may find useful www.travelmath.com.
It’s also physically tiring driving in the dark of night especially when you are waking up at a strange time that your body isn’t used to. It’s all well and good to say that you are going to wake up at 3 am to hit the road but can you physically do it?
2. Are you on a time constraint?
Can you arrive late to your final destination? If you are driving to Florida to get on a cruise ship, you can’t be late. Make sure that you factor in the driving time plus extra time just in case.
3. What’s the weather forecast for your route?
If it’s winter, is there a blizzard approaching? What about a rainstorm? You may need to find an alternate route that avoids the storm, which may make it a longer drive.
4. Is your car road worthy?
If you have an old beater car that has 200,000 miles on it, will it survive the trip there and back in one piece? Alternatively, is your car brand spanking new and expensive? You may not want to drive that shiny expensive car such a far distance until it’s lost that new car smell. Here’s a helpful checklist to make sure your car is roadworthy before you start on your journey.
5. Know your travelling companions. Will they be a benefit or a burden?
If your road mate says that they are capable of driving for 6 hours at a stretch but once the trip begins they get tired after 1 hour; you may be stuck with picking up the slack! Does your buddy have a loud snore or tell the same tired old joke over and over again? You will be in an enclosed moving box for an extended period make sure that you like your travelling companion. Oh, and make sure everyone is aware of the 10 Road Trip Rules!
As they say, Know your limit and play (or drive) within it!
Once you are down in Florida – you might want to take a detour next and check out New Orleans and Atlanta too! Sharon of Where’s Sharon has shared a great little itinerary of her road trip to the deep South from Orlando.
Need more convincing? Check out our article Road Trip to Florida: Driving is the Affordable Way