Summer time just screams road trip, doesn’t it?  Twizzlers, nuts, jelly beans, candy bars, chocolate rocks, lemon drops, mint melties, taffy…what’s your favorite road trippin’ treat!?  (We’re partial to licorice and Jelly Belly’s. :) )  Whether it’s a two hour trip to the cabin, or a twelve hour trip cross country, candy just makes it more fun.  If you’re heading out this summer–whether solo, with friends, family and/or the kids–stop in before you hit the road.  We have a great selection of the good, old, retro favorites and so many fun, new, items that you may have never tried before.  We also have a cooler full of drinks–both caffeinated, and not. :)

If you are headed out, in the car, this summer…here’s a little road trip trivia to think about, or to start a conversation with, while you’re drivin’.  (Because, let’s face it–as fun as the whole road trip idea sounds, there is some crazy boredom that takes over when you’re driving though farm country up here in the Midwest–or, when you’re driving through North Dakota, in general.)

So…the numbers varied a bit, but both Hertz and Bridgestone concluded that anywhere from 75-85% of adults were planning a road trip over the summer months.  (We’re one of them!)

Despite what the media makes it look like–the most enthusiastic road trippers are in the 30-39 year old age group.  The folks surveyed by Jiffylube, overwhelmingly, agreed that road trips make the best vacations.  (We agree.  We also agree that we’re in the 30-39 year old age group. ;) )

When Bridgestone asked road trippers about their top summer travel destinations, “family and friends” topped the list at 50 percent.  The “beach/ocean” came in a distant second at 38 percent.  (We vote for making it the best of both worlds–pick up Auntie LouLou and Nanna Pea and head to the beach together!  Don’t forget the big, floppy hats and sunscreen!)

Waze, a social GPS app from Google, asked users which city was “the most difficult, challenging and confusing city to drive through in the U.S.”  The winner?  New York City at 38.8 percent.  The remaining 61.2 percent of poll respondents have never driven in New York City.  (We’re in the 61.2% group.  We haven’t.  Nor do we plan on it.  It sounds more stressful than that dream we randomly have where we can’t remember our locker combination or remember where our classroom is.)

It’s totally normal to blow right past that road trip budget you drew up before leaving.  95 percent of Americans believe that people spend far more during road trips than they originally planned, with food/restaurants and gas topping the list of expenditures.  It also found that parents were more likely to spend more on vacations than road trippers without kids (47 percent vs. 27 percent, respectively).  (We know all of this to be true.  Between the rabbit’s foot key chains from Jackson Hole, Wyoming, some roadside Huckleberries from the middle of Montana, a new bottle of water from the gas station because the other one got spilled all over by little Mikey, another bottle of sunscreen because yours got left at the last beach, something a little stronger to knock out the headache you’ve, somehow, just developed, or another bottle of wine because the first one disappeared much quicker than expected–yes, the budget usually gets blown over. ;) )

In its survey, Bridgestone asked respondents to name the best part of a summer road trip.  The No. 1 response was “the company” at 34 percent.  (Well, that and the candy you stopped by Sweet River to pick up before you left–right!?)

Bridgestone asked parents the most common phrases they hear from their kids during those long summer drives.  The top five answers play like a familiar Greatest Hits collection from our childhood road trip soundtrack: #5 is the perennial hit “My brother/sister isn’t sharing”; #4 is the classic “I’m Bored”; #3 is that classic summer jam “Are we there yet?”; sneaking in at #2 is the old standby “I’m hungry”; and the #1 thing parents hear on summer road trips is the popular summer singalong, “I have to go to the bathroom.”  (Our answers to all of the above phrases also sound like the familiar, Greatest Hits collection, from our childhood: [Answers in the same order as above.] “Give it to your brother/sister, right now, or we’ll pull this car over right now.”; “Only boring people get bored.”; “No.  We’re not there yet, the sooner you stop asking, the sooner, we’ll get there.”; “Didn’t you just eat?  Want some carrot sticks?  We’ll eat when we get there.  No.  You can’t have any more candy.”; “AGAIN!?  We just stopped!?  It looks like the next rest stop is 116 miles away–you’ll have to hold it.”)

Bridgestone also asked parents what travel games they play with their kids (presumably to keep them from uttering their top five common phrases).  “I Spy” was the top choice at 39 percent, followed by “License Plate” at 25 percent. “20 Questions” polled, appropriately enough, at 20 percent.  And 18 percent played “Punch Bug,” the game in which you punch someone’s arm every time you see a Volkswagen Beetle before they do.  (That game was scary to me as a child.  I was always the one zoned out in a book–only to be scared to death by my sister, who was like a hawk when it came to spotting Volkswagen’s.  It was terrible.)

The biggest bummer on a road trip?   That would be fender-benders, say 74 percent of respondents in Bridgestone’s survey. Coming in at a distant second, 49 percent, was “flat tire.”  (Those are big bummers when just driving home from work.  Five miles.)

The Waze survey found that 83 percent of road trippers have spent six hours or more in a car, stopping only for gas or restroom breaks.  (By hour three you’re both so bored, and so determined to get there, it would have to take something really, REALLY, cool to make you stop.  Something like the worlds biggest ball of twine, maybe?  That’d make me stop, anyway.)

All of these pieces of trivia came from: Yahoo Travel.  The random commentary though…well, that came from us.  :)

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Salt Water Taffy