It's one thing to travel with your iPod, listening to a few songs while the bus takes you home from work. It's another thing to be ready for a road trip, in which you and a few friends pop away in a car and head somewhere far away. How exactly can you use your iPod to escape the inevitable boredom that comes from being forced to stay in one spot for so long? Hopefully, after reading this article, you'll be much clearer about how to do it.
Before we start, it's important to note that you'll never want to use your iPod headphones when you're driving - you need to pay attention to the road and any other potential car horns that could be warning you about impending danger. This article is not advocating that, so make sure you never do it.
As a passenger
If you're a passenger on this road trip, then you'll want to make sure you follow a few rules.
First, you'll want to be courteous to the other people in the car. If everyone is talking and having a good time, but you're the one on his iPod, shuffling through albums titles and searching for the next song to play, that will come across as rude. You're deliberately setting yourself apart from the conversation, and if you're in someone else's car, there's a good chance they'd prefer the pleasure of your company. An exception, of course, is when no one in the same car particularly likes you. In that case, our iPod tips are probably the least of your problems.
But when there are major lulls, it couldn't hurt to be ready for the trip with your iPod. We recommend setting up an iPod "play list" ahead of time so that you can simply turn it on and start listening without having to worry about pressing any buttons or shuffling tracks around. If you want to make your play list solely music, make sure you pick songs you really enjoy - and try to get creative with it, creating a flow to the songs that will maintain your interest.
It's also a good idea to have some extra audio - such as a book on tape that you've been listening to. Whether you prefer fiction or non-fiction is up to you. We also might recommend videos and movies for some people, but for many people, this can simply make them carsick. If you want to have an hour and a half of nausea-free entertainment, you might even try simply listening to the audio of a specific movie. You might be tempted to watch the movie, but if you keep your iPod tucked away you should be content to simply listen to the audio.
As a driver
If you're driving, you'll want to focus on a couple of things, including safety. You want to keep your iPod hands-free, so let someone else choose the play list or set a few ahead of time. Ask your passengers if they mind what you're going to play: be courteous. But if they don't care what you play, use a product like the RoadTrip from Griffin Technology, which provides a dock for your iPhone or iPod.
If you want to, go ahead and set a playlist ahead of time, but there's a good chance your friends will like to "mess with" your iPod to see what else they can play. Even if you've heard a particular song of their favorite album already, let it play for them. It might be tempting to say "my car, my rules," and you can always play that card, but be willing to share the wealth as well.