Holiday Travel Safety Tips for the Road
From celebrating with family to getting together with friends, the holidays are the best time of the year! Keep yuletide spirits high and everybody safe with these road trip safety tips.
Vehicle prep. Any time you have a long drive ahead of you, making sure your car is up-to-date on maintenance and in good working order relieves a lot of potential stress. If your trip may include snow, it’s a great idea to winterize your vehicle. You should also stock your car with a winter car survival kit — just in case something happens. And don’t forget to add snacks!
Plan your trip. Map your route or plan on using GPS so you know what to expect on your trip. If possible, research heavy traffic times for the urban areas you’ll be passing and try to avoid the most congested times.
Pad the travel time. Give yourself ample time to get where you’re going. Rushing in bad weather and heavy traffic is never a good idea. Instead, plan on a longer trip filled with family sing-alongs, road games and treats or small presents along the way.
Stay focused. Distracted driving should always be avoided and when reaction time can be compromised by slippery roads, it becomes even more of a no-no. If you’re the driver, let others deal with the cell phone or wait until you’re stopped. If you’re a passenger, help your driver do their job.
Charged cell phone. While you don’t want to use your phone while driving, you do want it to be working. Bring a charger so you can make sure your phone is charged. Add protection by loading the apps for your car insurance company and roadside assistance.
Practice winter driving. If you haven’t driven in snow for a while, maybe it’s time to give it a whirl — in an empty parking lot. Practice stopping and turning in snow to give your mind and muscles a refresher. It’s also a confidence booster.
Use a designated driver. If your holiday celebrations include some parties, make sure you have a designated driver. Planning ahead makes it easier for everyone to enjoy happy hour and the safe ride home.
Stick to it. If you’ve volunteered to be the designated driver, remember that having even one drink can compromise the safety of your group. Once the plans are made, stick to them and stay sober.
Thank the driver. Designated drivers are the real heroes of the road. Be sure they feel appreciated and thank them for keeping you, your friends and everyone on the roads safe this holiday season.
Use these tips to celebrate safely with friends and family. And remember to carry these habits into the New Year too!