Road Tripping with the Pets Covid Style
When I was a kid, my dear old Pop used to say to me “When life serves you lemons … go make some Lemonade”. Sadly he is no longer with us so he isn’t able to see the mounds and mounds of lemons left from all the Covid-19 Lemon trees around the world.
For travelling types like myself and my family, these lemons are a particularly sour variety as our annual overseas holiday that we live and breathe for is sadly not happening.
So this winter, instead of packing suitcases full of swimming costumes, board shorts, flip flops and sunscreen and throwing them in the airport transfer bus. We were instead forced to pack jumpers, beanies and gumboots and strategically place them in the family truckster so our two dogs could also fit in.
That’s right … A road trip was going to be our holiday for Winter 2020, but not to Sunny Queensland as the borders were shut, this road trip was going to be around our home state of NSW.
I am aware that my intro to this road trip article sounds super sarcastic like you would expect from an overworked writer due for a holiday. But to be brutally honest, it was one of the best holidays we have had as a family, mostly due to the fact that our two rescue dogs came along for the ride.
So let’s start at the beginning, which for me is the most enjoyable part of holidaying and that is in the planning. I did think that it would be harder to find accommodation options given we had the dogs, but was pleasantly surprised to find websites like Holidaying with Dogs that did a lot of the painful research for me.
I also found that my preconceived idea of what Dog friendly accommodation was going to look like was wrong … way wrong!! I thought we were going to be limited to only van parks or lower end home stays that didn't care if Pets affected their property, but the amount of luxurious accommodation options that allowed our Dogs was truly amazing, and once I discovered how much we were saving on International flights, boarding kennel fees and airport parking, I set the accommodation search results to show highest prices at the top of the list, I had money burning a hole in my pocket so we are living large kids!!
I booked a bunch of amazing homes to stay in, at areas that we have never been and most likely may have never visited if not for Covid. Some of these areas have had some real bad luck in 2020 too. From Fires to Floods and everything in between, they really needed the support which we didn't know when planning, but soon realised when we arrived.
Staying in houses was a good fit for the current situation too. Even though restrictions were being relaxed, following lockdown, I did not want to be in highly populated areas that we might normally visit like Byron Bay. I also didn't want to be in a hotel or a resort where it would be hard to social distance and being in a house was a far easier and controlled way to keep the family safe.
One of the more surprising elements of the road trip was having our first ever holiday with our two fur buddies. Today it is way more acceptable to have your dogs with you in most situations, which makes travelling with them way easier than ever before.
Visiting dog friendly beaches, cafes, national parks or state forests good for dog hikes, so you can find things that keep them busy (and wear them out) made the holiday super unique but kept us a lot more active than our traditional holiday.
We found ourselves doing way more walking and going on adventures we never would have if it wasn't for the pooches and we got to see way more every region than just it’s bars and eateries. And the dogs were a great conversation starter and we met a lot of other Hooman’s just by having them with us.
So all in all it was a fantastic trip, we saved a bunch of money, we saw places that we never would have plus helped them financially, did a lot more family orientated things that saw me lose weight versus putting a stack on. The only thing I didn't get was my winter tan, which even if I did I didn’t have any co-workers to make jealous anyways.
My advice … Just Do It!! You still get out of the house, you can't do anything else given the restrictions and you know what? You will have the time of your lives.
There are some tips we want to share regarding the essentials to pack for your Dogs.
- Obviously a Personalised Pet Collar for ID (they are in unfamiliar territory)
- Harness, Lead, Poop Bags and Collapsible Water Bowl
- Bedding, Favourite Toys, Dog Towel
- Food, snacks, food & water bowls and a can opener if you need it.
Now go and book yourself a road trip.