CB Radios: The Ideal Traveling Companion
A traveling companion can either make or break a trip, so it's important to be discriminating when selecting one. What do perfect road companions look like? They're top-notch navigators who possess the uncanny ability to direct you away from accidents, traffic congestion and road-construction delays. They're local connoisseurs, who can suggest the best nearby restaurants, hotels and hidden attractions. And while the perfect companion is always happy to converse, he never spoils a stunning sunset or tranquil stretch of open road with tedious chatter. Finding it difficult to locate such an ideal companion? You don't need to -- just pick up a CB radio.
Introduced in the 1940s, CB radios peaked in popularity in the 1970s, largely due to the 55 mph national speed limit and the radios' use on popular television series such as "The Dukes of Hazzard" and "Smokey and the Bandit." While no longer as popular in mainstream culture, the CB radio is still an incredibly valuable tool for travelers and remains the most common form of vehicle-to-vehicle communication on America's roadways. CB radios allow travelers to tap into an extensive network of real-time information about their surroundings, which provides numerous benefits.
Real-time road and traffic updates
Ever been stuck in slow-moving traffic, wondering when you'd finally pass the problem-causing bottleneck? CB radio owners, by communicating with drivers miles ahead, can quickly ascertain the source and location of the problem. Access to this valuable information allows you to plot alternate routes, helping you avoid hours of unnecessary delays. Additionally, CB operators are extremely diligent about reporting accidents and road obstructions. As a CB owner, you'll know about dangerous wrecks or objects in the road miles before they have the potential to cause a deadly accident. No other device provides the type of timesaving, accident-preventing information that a CB radio can deliver.
Wouldn't it be great to have your own local guide everywhere you traveled? As a CB owner, you're able to get detailed local information wherever you happen to be. If you're passing through an unfamiliar town, one quick request over the CB radio is all that's needed to get accurate directions from other drivers familiar with the area. Or, if you're looking for a quality meal, someone on the CB will likely be able to recommend the best local diner. CB radios provide a gateway to similar information about other local businesses, sights and activities.
Many CB radios include special channels that provide real-time weather and storm information for your specific region from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. A number of models include a function that alerts you to severe incoming weather even when your CB radio isn't turned on. These real-time weather updates can be extremely helpful in avoiding dangerous storms, selecting routes and staying safe during winter driving.
Conversation and camaraderie
As a CB radio owner, you'll seldom travel in isolation. The CB serves as a wonderful medium to strike up a conversation with other drivers, an especially nice benefit on long, solo road trips. CB users are a diverse bunch, and it's possible to meet and talk to people from all walks of life. When you grow tired of the chatter, simply flip the "off" switch and return to the peaceful solitude of your own vehicle.
The CB radio is perhaps the most overlooked tool available to today's road traveler. It is unmatched at providing pertinent information with useful benefits, including fewer hours spent in traffic, greater navigational accuracy, more enjoyable local interactions, on-demand conversation and camaraderie, and an overall increase in road and driving safety. CB radios are affordable, too: You can buy a complete radio and antenna package for well under $100. With the many benefits associated with CB ownership, you should strongly consider taking this "ideal traveling companion" along on your next road trip.
|Andrew Youderian is the founder and manager of Right Channel CB Radios, an online store specializing in CB equipment for vehicles. Right Channel CB Radios carries a large selection of CB radios and antennas, and hosts a CB Radio Resources Library, containing numerous CB-related articles and guides. Youderian lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, and has traveled extensively throughout the American West. His most recent excursion was a 10,000-mile, five-week road trip across the United States.|