How much would a road trip cost?

I Stock 1371555639

Although road trips are often a much cheaper option compared to flying, it is very easy to overspend on a road trip vacation. Expenses can add up quickly with all the costs of gas, food, and motels. There are many interesting attractions to consider and in consequence, the costs can easily get out of hand. To make sure you travel within budget, you may consider creating a road trip budget. Let’s explain how to calculate the cost of a road trip and how to calculate the cost of tolls.

Road trip costs

The typical road trip costs are:

  • Food. Here you shouldn’t come across any surprises as food prices don’t vary much across the country. However, don’t forget that being on the road usually makes people hungrier than normal. Also, you will probably want to splurge on a really good meal or two. It’s your vacation, after all.

  • Accommodation. You may stay in hotels, stay with relatives if possible, or even hit a campground. Booking hotels in advance may help you stick with the budget. Camping is a great way to keep the price low.

  • Gas. It’s a simple calculation. You just figure out your mileage and divide it by your miles per gallon. Then, you multiply it by the price per gallon. The total cost depends on the route, the weight of your vehicle, as well as gas price.

  • Entertainment and souvenirs.

  • Tolls. It’s important to identify toll costs on the way and ensure they are accounted for on your budget sheet.

  • Parking. The cost is usually highest around inner-city areas.

How to create a road trip budget?

If you want to properly calculate the cost of your road trip, you need to consider all the factors listed above. Don’t forget to also budget for the unexpected where on the road – it may be a car breakdown or getting stuck in the middle of nowhere with no signal. It’s always good to have approximately $200 extra budgeted for the trip for any unexpected costs that might arise. Creating a road trip budget will probably take around two hours but it’s definitely worth the time and effort. The final product should be a document with your spending limit split into different types of expenses.

Road trip gas and toll calculator – how to calculate expenses on gas?

The best way to calculate the total cost of your road trip is to use a road trip cost calculator. In order to calculate the cost, you need to select the type of your vehicle and the start/exit points of your trip. Remember that gas prices fluctuate in different areas. Using a toll calculator provides you with estimated gas costs and a map of the cheapest gas stations on your route.

How to calculate the cost of tolls on a road trip manually?

The very first step to calculate the cost is finding out the current price of gas. This will help you keep your total numbers as accurate as possible. Of course, prices vary in different states but knowing the current price will give you a dependable approximation of the total fuel cost. Government intervention, financial markets, politics, geographic area, and natural disasters or weather determines the fuel price.

When you know the current price of gas, calculating costs is simple. You should divide the total mileage for the trip by the vehicle’s miles per gallon to calculate the total gallons you need. Then, multiply that by fuel cost per gallon to get the total cost of gas for your trip. There is one more thing to keep in mind – the toll rates. The best road trip calculators can provide you with both the fuel cost and total toll rates you have to pay.

How to keep your road trip cost to a minimum?

Do you want to minimize the total cost of your road trip? Follow our tips and advice!

  1. Go easy on the skinny pedal. Consider driving at a reduced speed to keep your road trip as cheap as possible. Most cars get the greatest fuel economy at 55 mph – try to stay at this speed. Also, avoiding routes with a lot of stops or traffic congestion may be helpful.

  2. Use fuel discounts, rewards, and credit cards. There are some discounts on fuel at Walmart when you pay with Walmart Gift Cards and Walmart Credit Cards. Also, there are some cashback offers e.g., at Costco.

  3. Use public transit whenever possible. Sometimes, parking on the outskirts of the city is cheaper or even free.

  4. Use Airbnb instead of hotels. Sure, hotels are more convenient in most cases but staying at hotels may come at a high price. If you want to reduce accommodation costs without sacrificing too much comfort, consider using Airbnb and choose a private room, private home, or entire apartment.

  5. Be careful with rental cars. Some car rental companies are expensive and some charge additionally for using toll roads. Make sure you read an agreement carefully and use a car rental comparison website to get an idea of prices.

Jun 12, 2023


Ready to pay tolls with your phone?

We thought you might be. Download the app today and enjoy your drive. Stress-free toll payment awaits!

Get the app

Recommended articles

By continuing to use our site, you agree to our privacy policy. Learn more about how we use cookies by reviewing our privacy policy


Scan QR code to
download Uproad!

Open phone camera and scan
Fleet Toll Managment