A family vacation can be a great experience and how you travel is a crucial factor. Previously, travelling by flight was popular among most families. However, present figures show otherwise. According to statistics, New Zealanders spend 1,175 million hours yearly travelling in motor vehicles. Road trips are becoming more popular as most millennials seek convenience and adventure. Due to the benefits, it makes sense to hit the road with your family. But it is not problem-free. Below are four safety tips to consider for your next family road trip.
Prepare your car
Your car should function well before embarking on a family road trip. Imagine stopping in the middle of nowhere to change your tires and dealing with fussy kids alongside. That can be overwhelming. Therefore, it is advisable to perform some maintenance and fine-tune your vehicle, including changing your oil, rotating your tires, and checking your batteries. It is also a good idea to check the brand and model of your automobile for safety recalls and rectify any concerns that arise before the journey. Research the weather conditions for the destinations you will travel through so you can buy new tires, snow chains, or a snowbrush if necessary. You can also check garages like the Edmunds if you think it’s time to replace your auto before the trip.
Stock up on emergency supplies
It’s a good idea to keep some emergency supplies in your trunk in case of car issues. The NHTSA recommends carrying items such as a portable cell phone charger, jumper cables, flashlights, blankets, tire pressure gauges, additional windshield wiper fluid, and flares. If you’re travelling in the colder months, remember to carry some additional clothing and nonperishable food. Having some extra bottles of water can come in handy if you are stranded for an extended time. It’s also a good idea to keep a first-aid kit in case somebody gets hurt.
Plan your route in advance
Planning your itinerary allows you to prepare for necessary stops along the way to avoid driving tired. Include at least two hours of rest stops in your road trip itinerary. And, between stretches, you should freshen yourself, stretch your legs, eat well, and hydrate to prepare for the next. Driving fatigue is a prominent cause of traffic accidents globally, and you risk dozing off behind the wheel and putting your family in harm’s way if you fail to make sufficient stops to rest and refuel.
Pay attention to basic road safety protocols
Getting careless about obeying every safety regulation is easy as you gain more confidence behind the wheel. Before you travel anywhere, ensure all passengers are fastened into their seats. According to the CDC, seat belts are one of the greatest strategies to decrease injuries in automobile accidents, but millions of individuals forget to wear them on every journey.
There is also the possibility of driving distracted when you are having a lot of fun. Try to avoid this at all costs and take extra precautions to keep your attention on the road. Pull over to the side of the road if you have to check your phone or attend to something that may take your eyes away from the road.