Don't Make These Massive Travel Mistakes When Traveling in the U.S.

by Maurie Backman | Updated July 25, 2021 - First published on May 30, 2021

Many or all of the products here are from our partners that pay us a commission. It’s how we make money. But our editorial integrity ensures our experts’ opinions aren’t influenced by compensation. Terms may apply to offers listed on this page.
Masked woman with luggage waiting in a busy airport.

Image source: Getty Images

Traveling domestically? Be sure to avoid these pitfalls.

Though more and more countries are opening to American tourists, right now, a lot of people are still planning to travel within the U.S. when they take vacation. Not only could that result in fewer complications, but in some cases, it could produce savings -- in situations, for example, where it's possible to drive to a destination rather than spring for airfare. But if you're going to travel within the U.S., here are a few mistakes you should aim to avoid.

You may live in a state that's completely reopened at this stage of the pandemic and doesn't have any coronavirus-related quarantine restrictions in place. But a different state may be following different rules. Rather than assume, research these requirements before you fly or drive to another state. If you don't, you could wind up with a major hassle on your hands if you have to spend time quarantining, or if you have to take a COVID-19 test and wait for a negative result.

While you're researching quarantine guidelines, also make sure to pay attention to mask mandates. Many states have lifted the masking requirement indoors, but not every state has at this point.

2. Not paying attention to speed limits on the road

You might think that the U.S. has a universal speed limit when it comes to highway travel. It doesn't. In Montana, you can go 80 without getting pulled over. In other states, the highway speed limit can be as low as 50 or 55. And in much of the country, the highway speed limit is somewhere in the middle.

Speed limits can also vary on the same highway, depending on the stretch of road you hit. The point? Pay attention to local limits. The last thing you want to do is get slapped with a hefty fine because you spaced out and didn't notice you were going too fast. While looking out for road signs is always a good bet, you can also use an app like Waze as a backup plan (which will alert you if you're going too fast).

3. Not getting travel insurance

Many people assume that travel insurance is only necessary when going overseas. But having a policy could work to your benefit if you're traveling domestically, too.

A travel policy could provide protection for a host of events -- missed airline connections, weather-related disruptions, and health emergencies, to name a few. And while you may get some amount of coverage if you have a travel rewards credit card, it may be limited, especially when it comes to medical situations. (For example, if you need to be transported back to your home state due to a medical emergency, your credit card may not cover it, whereas a travel insurance policy is more likely to.)

There are plenty of amazing places to visit and things to do within the U.S. But if you're going to travel within the country, be sure to avoid these errors. Not only could they cost you money, but they could ruin an otherwise incredible experience.

Alert: highest cash back card we've seen now has 0% intro APR until nearly 2024

If you're using the wrong credit or debit card, it could be costing you serious money. Our expert loves this top pick, which features a 0% intro APR until nearly 2024, an insane cash back rate of up to 5%, and all somehow for no annual fee. 

In fact, this card is so good that our expert even uses it personally. Click here to read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes. 

Read our free review

About the Author