I am leaving in a month to drive from tacoma washington to Columbia South carolina to meet up with my husband. I will be driving a 2004 kia optima with my dog, cat, and ferret...none of which get along...and I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. I know nothing about cars and I have only had my drivers license for less then a year. I have a few questions and I was hoping to find some help here.
I need to map out a route but not sure if I should head north through the mountains where it will be cooler or if I should go south where the mountains arnt as bad but it will be hotter. Or if I should just cut straight across...>.< Does anyone know of a good route for this time of year or where I could find one??
I have a cage for my ferret that will fit in my backseat but my cat freaks out whenever I put him in a crate and I am thinking that after 1 day of listening to him howl I am going to want to toss him out the window. Does anyone have any suggestions on keeping my pets from eating eachother?
How long should I be able to drive a day? I don't have a clue how long this trip is going to take. I am short on cash too so is sleeping at rest stops actually safe or should I try to scrape up enough to stay at motels? My dog makes a good watch dog and he is pretty scary lookin when he is on alert so I don't think anyone could sneak up on me or anything....still would like to hear I will be safe from someone that has made the trip before....
About how much money am I going to need for gas and food? Would it just be cheaper to take a cooler of food? Like sandwhich stuff and fruit?
I am not even sure what all I need to know....so pretty much any tips and help would be great. Thank you for your help