Why Music Makes Road Trips Even Better

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A couple enjoying music while on a road trip

Road trips. We all love them. 

The call of the open road, the excitement of the destination and the opportunity to spend some quality time with our friends or relatives…not to mention the immense sense of adventure. Picture the perfect road trip and you probably imagine stunning scenery, open roads and gentle hum of the engine. 

But what about all these hours spent in the car? Does the excitement give way to boredom and fatigue after some time? Or maybe there is music playing to keep your spirits up?

Why is music important

All great road trips have a sound track. If you have ever been on a great and memorable road trip, you probably have a song, album or artist which brings it all flooding back. Just a few notes can conjure up the sights, the smells and the memories of that special time in your life. 

In fact, science proves that music which is playing during special events in our lives helps us recollect those images more vividly. As experts explain, “music helps because it provides a rhythm and rhyme and sometimes alliteration which helps to unlock that information with cues. It is the structure of the song that helps us to remember it, as well as the melody and the images the words provoke.”

So, music isn’t just about entertainment when it comes to long road trips. It also helps you cement the valuable memories for years to come. Another study on listening music in carsalso highlighted that many people love listening to music while driving just because it makes the journey feel shorter, or helps to keep the kids busy.

How to prepare your road trip music 

Once you’ve decided to prepare your music to listen to during a journey, you have a number of options to consider. However, car safety should also play an important role when it comes to preparing music in the car. You should always ensure that you are not distracted by devices such as your phone when driving. 

Make sure you prepare your playlist for the car ahead of time and set it up to play before you are moving in the vehicle. When creating your playlist, consider your tastes as well as the landscape you are driving through, and the final destination. For example, epic tunes are perfect when driving through breathtaking scenery.

Others may choose to listen to the radio during their journey. Again, ensure that you set it to your chosen station and adjust volume levels before setting off to limit distraction during your journey. Although safety is a concern when it comes to preparing music for a drive, the act of listening to music appears to have little or no impact on safety levels. In fact, nearly 80% of drivers claimed they’d never got lost or missed a turn or green light while listening to music.

Other worthwhile past times 

Music is a great way to pass the time during long and occasionally monotonous road trips. However, you can also take the opportunity to undertake other (non-distracting) activities to pass the time. Some of these include:

  • Talking to a passenger 
  • Talking to friends and family on the phone (via a safe hands free kit)
  • Listening to an audiobook or podcast
  • Simply enjoying the scenery.

Did you know…

If you’re not sure what to add to your next road trip playlist, you can consult numerous playlists available online. Also check what other car goers chose as their most loved tracks listened to during road trips. In a recent UK-based survey these turned out to be the top 3:

Bohemian Rhapsodyby Queen

Shape of Youby Ed Sheeran

I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers

The most hated tracks to listen to during a road trip included:

Babyby Justin Bieber

Gangnam Styleby PSY

Baby One More Timeby Britney Spears

It is clear that music is an important, if not crucial part of any road trip. The power of music will help you concentrate and then recall some of the best memories from the trip. Keep safety in mind when picking what music to listen to and how to listen to it. And don’t get carried away singing – in this way, music will be both a safe and enjoyable element of your road trip. 


Contributor: Giles Kirkland

Giles Kirkland is a car mechanic at Oponeo with a great passion for anything automotive. When he’s not busy tinkering with cars, he likes to hit the road on his old Yamaha and explore the countryside. Also, he is keen on blogging and sharing ideas with auto and motorcycle enthusiasts across the globe.

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