As a child, I remember trekking everywhere in my mom’s mini-van. We’d go to Kings Dominion, an amusement park in Northern Virginia, or Baltimore to buy lottery tickets, because back then the lotto wasn’t in our state. Once, we drove 16 hours to Disney World with the cooler packed with goodies that held up well overnight, like chicken adobo. (Not a predictable on-the-goal meal, but the vinegar prevented it from spoiling.)
That said, as long as I had plenty of pillows and blankets and rest stop breaks, I loved taking those road trips.
Mom was lucky; the road trips were doable because gas wasn’t $2.79 a gallon, the average cost at the pump today, according to AAA, Wright Express and Oil Price Information Service. Still, considering where it was two years ago, that’s reasonable, especially if you happen to have a larger family. Anyone who has priced flights for a family of five is in for a shocker when all the fees add up.
So there’s no time to hesitate: Pack up the Ford Escape Hybrid (or convertible if you’re planning a romantic summer getaway) for a week at a Cape Cod vacation rental.
You won’t be sorry, or even necessarily drive your vehicle that much while there. The compound of three homes pictured, for example, beckons bikers and hikers thanks to its proximity to trails and the Cape Cod National Seashore. And the kid-friendly Bay–where waters are warmer, the tide is low and the crowds are few–is within strolling distance.
See, it doesn’t have to be stressful. The only thing to worry about is buying that perfect pair of shades for riding with the top down.