Tons of Americans every year choose to take to the roads in an attempt to save money during their travels. But if you're not careful, traveling by car can add up very quickly. Here some ideas to keep your costs down.

1. Get a traveling buddy


If you're choosing to drive because it's cheaper than flying, the fastest way to blow your budget is having to stop for the night. But if you are traveling with another potential driver, you can switch off sleeping in the backseat and driving the next shift. If you can pull off driving through the night, you'll not only save time, but those expensive hotel rates as well.

2. Pack your lunch


Food on the road can get tremendously expensive, even if you just stick to the crappy drive-thrus at the rest stops. Not to mention how outrageously unhealthy and unsatisfying a fast food diet can become over the course of just a few meals. But with a little forethought and preparation, you can bring your own sandwiches, snacks and drinks in a portable cooler. Avoiding the drive-thrus also means you can plan your stops around the places you want to see, not around your empty stomach.

3. Plan your route


Tolls can eat up a startling amount of your travel budget. If you plan ahead, you can see if there are other routes you can take that will avoid tolls and possibly provide better scenery at the same time. This is especially true if you drive a gas-efficient car. It might be worth it to take the longer route around NYC than paying the huge tolls to drive through it.