The Most-Driver Friendly States for Road Trips

Each state has its pluses and minuses.

Unless you have visited or lived in several different states in the U.S., it can be really hard to tell which is the best for driving. Alarms.org, the official site of the National Council for Home Safety and Security, highlighted some of the most important factors for drivers and compiled a list to that helps narrow it down. 

The website organized lists with the top five states for each category, such as best gas prices and most scenic driving roads. Many drivers who face lengthy commutes each day know of our states' shortcomings and also where it shines. For those of us who may not travel much, these listings help when planning travel, especially during the holiday season. 

Having to constantly fill your vehicle's tank with expensive gas is probably the biggest annoyance for drivers no matter where they live. Alarms.org reports that southerners, on average, experience a lot less pain at the pump than northern drivers. GasBuddy.com's list of the top five states with the lowest average gas prices supports this claim as they are all located below the Mason-Dixon. In the top spot is Alabama with $2.26, followed by Mississippi and South Carolina both at $2.27, then Texas with $2.29 and Oklahoma at $2.296. 

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If you are looking to experience a more scenic route for your holiday road trip, Fodor's Travel has got you covered. Of course, the website's list of the most beautiful roads is subjective but nonetheless helpful. At the top of Fodor's list is the world-famous Blue Ridge Parkway, a 400-plus mile stretch of highway that passes through the southern Appalachians. Following that renown landscape, in second place, is Cades Core Drive, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee. The Kancamagus Highway, New Hampshire follows suit in third place as yet another mountainous, scenic ride. The Road to Hana, Hawaii is a great way to experience the Maui area with an estimated 600 curves and 54 bridges. Last, but not least, is the San Juan Skyway in Colorado that loops around the heart of the San Juan Mountains. 

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Cars.com determined that the Northeast has the lowest vehicle theft rates, taking up four of the top five spots on that list. Vermont took first place with 38.9 thefts (per 100,000), followed by Maine with 60.1 and New Hampshire with 64.6. It is no surprise here, especially since Maine and New Hampshire took two of the top three spots on the U.S. News & World Report's 10 Safetst Cities in America list. New York placed in fourth with 79.7 stolen cars and Virginia took fifth place with 92.1. 

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When it comes to states with the best driving records, it mostly comes down to which ones have the least dangerous roadways. Geotab factored in the number of road fatalities and crashes for average daily traffic to determine the top five states with the best driving. Rhode Island placed in first with a fatal crash rate of 0.1 (39 crashes, 40 fatalities). New Hampshire gets listed again in second place with the same 0.1 rate (57 crashes, 60 fatalities). Third, fourth and fifth place saw a three-way tie between Minnesota, Massachusetts and Wisconsin with a 0.2 fatal crash rate. 

It may be nearly impossible to say which states are the best to drive in, because each has its positives and negatives. One state might have better gas prices, but be categorized as having more accident-prone roads. Just remember, the grass isn't always greener on the other side.