If you’re figuring out ways to burn through your student loan even quicker, what better way than buying a car, packing it full of friends (Inbetweeners style) and going on a road trip adventure.  

This time of year is the perfect time to head off on a road trip, as whilst the majority of people feel road trips are more for Spring and Summer, there’s a lot of natural beauty to be found in Autumn and it’s this time of year when a car really makes sense.  The cold, dark mornings, the rain, snow, frost and ice – now is the time that we really appreciate the comfort and convenience of jumping in a car, putting the heaters on, and driving to where we need to go rather than waiting for an inevitably delayed bus or train.

That said, cars aren’t just functional to get us from A to B.  They are an incredible social instrument that can help us explore the world, have great times, and facilitate trips that couldn’t otherwise be taken.  Admittedly, if you’re planning a foodie weekend to a cool city like Liverpool or Manchester then the train is likely to be the most efficient way of getting there.

It’s interesting to note, however, that whilst car ownership tends to be considered a reasonably large expense – particularly for student’s on a budget, as even specialist student car insurance comes at a premium due to the risk associated with inexperienced drivers… but, you do benefit from the economies of scale, meaning, if you have four people travelling from London to Liverpool, the fuel is likely to be in the region of £60 return; when divided by four that’s only £15 each.  Comparatively, if you were to get a train, it’s likely to be in the region of £60 each!

The other aspect about driving, rather than getting a train is that you have complete flexibility – you go and come back when you want.  If there are traffic jams, you can find an alternative route, and you don’t run the risk of missing a particular timed train, thus having to pay for a new ticket.  You also get to explore much more remote and interesting places than you would if you relied on public transport.

With that in mind, and staying within the theme of the North of England let’s take a look at three places you might want to consider taking an autumnal road trip to:

EDALE

Edale is in the Peak District, about thirty minutes away from Sheffield.  It’s a great place to go walking and then cosy down next to a log fire in a traditional, dog friendly, pub.  The brilliant thing about Edale, is that it’s so close to Sheffield you can be active during the day and then party at night.

LYTHAM ST ANNES

Often in the shadow of its noisy neighbour, Blackpool, Lytham and St Annes offers a more gentile alternative where the beach stretches for miles and miles.  It’s a sleepy little place where you’ll find friendly folk, classic arcades and piers, cheap fish and chips… all a stone’s throw from the bright lights of Blackpool.

KNARESBOROUGH

Just thirty minutes away from Leeds, Knaresborough is next to Harrogate in a beautiful gorge like valley.  Again, expect a gentle pace of life, with plenty of nature around – perfect in the autumn months; close enough to the party scene of York and Leeds.

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