Exploring Road Trip Experiences: US vs. European Adventures
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The ongoing battle between Europe and the USA concerning trip destinations continues with a comparison of where road trips are better. We already know the deal of too many cars and roads in the country of freedom. At the same time, the European Union has one of the most walkable cities, where you can actually rely on public transportation, such as trains and buses, to get to your destination. However, if we look deeper into it, we can see how the problem is more complex, so we can offer a more thorough idea of the best place to have the best trip of your life.

Depending on where you live, you might acknowledge these issues as more or less upsetting. You may take into consideration gas prices, road bathrooms and traffic congestion, but these also depend on the period you choose to travel. For instance, if you’re traveling during holidays, you can expect the worst of the worst regardless of the area.

Anyway, without further ado, let’s get into it!

cars on road in sunset
Image source: https://unsplash.com/photos/cars-on-road-in-sunset-CT_8qZeXx78

Europe has excellent rest stops

If you plan on visiting Europe on the road, rest assured because most countries have great rest stops, which sometimes include motels, restaurants, campsites and playgrounds. For instance, in France or Spain, these rest stops will look like tiny villages, where there are numerous people coming in and out, having barbecues, gathering for a good time and enjoying their families’ company.

Such spaces allow you to get a breather and rest to withstand the long roads ahead and the possible unpleasant weather and get some local food. However, suppose you are in need of a constant internet connection. In that case, we recommend you get an eSIM for Europe, which allows you to use WhatsApp for communication and access the internet for maps.

European bathrooms might not be the greatest

Unfortunately, besides all the great things about rest stops, European bathrooms seem not always prepared with everything you need. Sometimes, you’ll find old bathrooms where you must be careful where you sit or move due to the lack of hygiene or space. Latvia, Spain, and Malta are the leading countries with the dirtiest bathrooms, while the UK, Italy and Slovakia are on the other side of the list.

Regardless, always be prepared with your own toiletries when entering such bathrooms so you won’t get disappointed and need to find another one. The US is indeed better in this category, but finding gas stations with bathrooms might seem challenging, too, so get unlimited US data for proper road guidance.

Road rage is less common in Europe

Unfortunately, road rage is a serious matter, and it should be treated more gravely because it’s the leading cause of road accidents. And it seems like American drivers are prone to having exaggerated rage issues while driving, with states like Arizona, Rhode Island and West Virginia being some of the most dangerous to move around since you’ll indeed get yelled at.

On the other hand, driving around Europe is less agitated, so you should expect people to be more chill. For instance, if you go to Italy, you’ll notice how people are unbothered while driving, so they won’t have the energy to yell or tease you in traffic. Moreover, many drivers there are elderly since Italian people are self-reliant and pretty dope overall, so they’ll face anyone on the road with politeness.

Traffic roundabouts are everywhere in Europe

While driving in Europe is not that complex, you might have some issues with roundabouts with no traffic lights, which is considerably difficult to handle during bad weather or at night. Overall, roundabouts here are a little bit unnerving, and sometimes you might experience taking the wrong path and having to turn around, which is always a hassle, especially since the roads are not that massive.

On the other hand, American roads tend to be straighter, which is easier to drive on, especially if you’re hurrying. But if you drive around the UK, it’s known that the roads are unique because they follow the old Roman roads that are surely not prepared for today’s traffic. Therefore, you must pay more attention to your driving.

Snack options are varied and more delicious in Europe

Besides finding great rest stops, Europe has some of the most delicious, healthy snacks. Imagine stopping somewhere in France and tasting the best homemade cheese with freshly baked bread and fruits and vegetables for snacks. Oh, and the coffee here is impressive, although nothing beats the Italian coffee.

On the other hand, the USA tends to provide mostly junk food, which is a common problem in the country that leads to obesity more than anywhere else. Ultra-processed foods are definitely not healthy, but they tend to be the perfect solution for cravings, which happen while driving long roads where you don’t have the possibility to eat fresh meals.

Gas prices are more expensive in Europe

If you’re traveling to Europe and expect similar gas prices, then be prepared to exceed your travel budget because the gas in Europe is sometimes even double the price compared to the US. In countries like Germany, France and Italy (so the best and most tourist countries), you may pay more than $7 per gallon.

Hence, you either limit your car rides and switch to public transport if you stay in one country for some time or spend more money on the trip. It can get more expensive if you take the wrong turn multiple times and waste gas because you’ll have to fill the tank again and lose money, so be careful on the roads and the prices.

Navigating the Roads

Both Europe and the US are great travel destinations because they offer unique experiences. However, each has pros and cons, from expensive gas prices to complex roads. Therefore, the conclusion is that European drivers are more chill, and the food is absolutely delicious, but you should expect to get lost from time to time, and the roads aren’t exactly great compared to the US.