Florida Road Trip Tips: 25 Things You Should Know

All the things you need to know to have a great Florida road trip:

#1 If you are traveling in and around Orlando or central Florida, purchasing a Sun-Pass for tolls may be advantageous. You can buy them at over 3,100 retail locations including Walmarts, CVS stores, and Publix Markets.

Update: Life just got brighter for travelers heading down to Florida: As of 2021, I-PASS and EZpass are now accepted on all toll roads in the Sunshine State.

#2 Florida drivers are a bit crazy. Be extra careful if you rent a car when you visit.

#3 Freshness makes all the difference so try seafood even if you do not typically eat it: yellowfin tuna, mahi-mahi, snapper, lobster, scallops, redfish, shrimp, crappie, and catfish.

#4 Cigar City Brewing in Tampa was named the #1 craft brewery in Florida by Thrillist.

#5 Snowbirds are people, not birds and they make Florida an extra busy place in the winter months. If will be visiting during the holidays read our favorite post, Festive Things to Do Near Orlando. 

#6 Pollo Tropical is a Caribbean-themed fast-food chain restaurant. It’s cheap, quick and good.

#7 The Everglades National Park is the only place in the world that alligators and crocodiles live together. Take a thrilling Airboat Tour through the beautiful marshes of the glades.

#8 Slow takes on a whole new meaning. No one is in a hurry. Island attitude is a real phenomenon and everyone has caught it.

#9 Try the baby back ribs at Flanigan’s Seafood Bar and Grill restaurant. There are 23 locations in south Florida’s east coast.

#10 St. Augustine, the oldest city in the country, is outstanding. It is a charming town with the oldest fort in the United States and is home to the Fountain of Youth.

#11 Florida is the largest citrus producer in the US, mainly orange juice and grapefruit. Stop at a citrus grove to pick your own fruit.

#12 Coral Castle is the most unique attraction to see in the state.

#13 Key West has the highest average temperature of any city in the United States.

#14 Disney World is roughly the same size as San Francisco with four theme parks, two water parks, 32 on-site hotels, five golf courses, two shopping districts and a sports complex. If you are planning a trip to the area start planning now. No matter when your future trip may be. It takes extensive research to make the most of your time there!

#15 Bring bug spray. There are numerous bugs that can affect your vacation: no-see-ums, mosquitoes, and love bugs are a few pesky critters.

#16 You can drink avocado-based wine in southern Florida at Schnebly Redland’s Winery. No grapes, just exotic fruits! They also make wine from mango, lychee, guava and passion fruit.

#17 Travel smarter and cheaper by downloading helpful apps to make your Florida road trip run smooth. See this list of Best Free Apps for a U.S. Road Trip for ideas.

#18 Weather forecasts mean nothing. Most days it calls for rain which might be true, but it may rain for thirty minutes and not rain for the rest of the day.

#19 Sanibel Island tops many lists as the world’s best place for shelling and is one of the most beautiful islands in the United States.

#20 Florida is one of the only places in the world you can swim with manatees. These gentle giants are adorable and swimming with them is a one-of-a-kind experience.

#21 It is a sanctuary for the One Percenter club. Get a taste of the extravagant lifestyles of the rich in Palm Beach, Sanibel, Boca Grande, Naples, or Jupiter Island.

#22 Florida Stone Crab Claw season is mid-October to mid-May. The crusty crustacean is a Florida delicacy, served hot and cold.

#23 Florida has 9 out of the best 25 beaches in the United States according to TripAdvisor: Siesta, Saint Pete, Pensacola, Clearwater, St. Augustine, Panama City, Fort Myers, Hollywood, and South Beach. Since you’re driving, make sure to bring a lightweight and easy-to-carry lounge chair. 

#24 Most people know what red flags stand for on the beach, but for some reason, the blue and purple flags are ignored. They mean dangerous marine life has been spotted. Before jumping in the ocean make sure there are no jellyfish or sharks in the area!

#25 You will never get sick of palm trees, sunny days or the beach so make sure to bring plenty of sunscreen.

Looking for more tips for your Florida road trip?

Check out these posts:

Other Things To Do in Florida


Websites to Help Plan Your Florida Road Trip

We have been budget traveling for over ten years and love finding deals. Here are a few websites that we use consistently to save money and time booking accommodations, flights and car rental.


      • Hotels.com has a best rate guarantee program that allows you to price match up until 24 hours prior to arrival and its rewards program gives one free night for every 10 nights collected.


      • Airfarewatchdog.com is a comparison website that searches through tons of flights. It compares airline pricing up to three times a day, having up to date information and also includes airlines such as Southwest and Allegiant that other websites do not include.

Car Rental

      • Priceline is usually the cheapest for car rentals and has a best rate guarantee program as well.

Do you have any other additional Florida road trip tips? Tell us in the comments section below!

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Florida Road Trip

Follow Angela:

Angela E. is a travel writer from the Chicagoland area who has visited all 50 states in the US and has traveled extensively around the world. She is passionate about exploring the great outdoors and hiking in particular. Her love for nature has taken her to some of the most beautiful locations on the planet. She has written extensively about her travels on her own website, Dang Travelers, and has been published in collaboration with other travel websites and multiple visitor bureaus around the country.

6 Responses

  1. Jaimee Nicole Bell

    “Snowbirds are people, not birds.” I died. My sister has a vacay home in Florida which we sometimes drive to (from Canada) and I literally agree with every single one of these tips.
    We visited Siesta Keys beach (it has the whitest sand in America!) last February and it was lovely!

    • Dang Travelers

      Bahahaha, I was giggling to myself when I wrote that line! Florida does have beautiful beaches. Now we just have to get to them all & experience the soft sand between our toes!

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