Planning on packing the boot, buckling in, and hitting the road for a holiday getaway? Here are six ways to prepare for a safe road trip.
The holidays usually mean spending quality time with family and friends, eating delicious food, and taking spontaneous or planned road trips. But with this sometimes comes congested traffic and busy shop fronts and streets.
To help you navigate these obstacles, we’ve put together a checklist of valuable tips to ensure you and your family have a safe and happy holiday before you even hit the road.
Rest and recharge
Before you embark on a long drive, a good night’s rest is essential. Try to get eight hours or more of sleep so you can be fresh and energised for the long-haul drive ahead. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids, take regular breaks and stay nourished with regular meals and nutritious snacks. Keep in mind the only real solution to combat fatigue is quality sleep.
Prepare your car for the trip
It will not be a happy holiday if your car breaks down halfway to your destination. So before your big trip, be sure to get it serviced. Pump your tyres, fill your fuel tank, top up your engine oil and coolant, and check that your brakes and lights are in good working order.
Pack an emergency kit including a spare tyre, jack, tyre lever, pump, tyre gauge, jumper cables and a large bottle of water. That way, if something goes wrong, you have the tools to fix it. And, of course, having a first aid kit is also essential.
Check the weather forecast
The holidays fall in some of our hottest and wettest months. And with that comes the threat of bushfires, rain, storms and floods. Severe weather conditions often have a negative impact on driving conditions, making the roads a more dangerous place for drivers.
For example, bush and grass fires can leap over roads and even main highways. They generate enormous amounts of smoke and can often reduce visibility to almost zero, resulting in road closures. Heavy winds and rain can make seeing the road difficult, resulting in the need for reduced driving speeds. So, before you set off, check the weather forecast and follow the road rules.
Pack all the essential items
Travelling on Australian roads often means driving under fierce sunlight for at least part of your journey. So, it pays to invest in a pair of polarised sunglasses to avoid harsh sun glare and possibly getting into a dangerous situation. Ensure you stay hydrated and nourished by packing plenty of water and snacks.
Take care of your most precious cargo
Click, clack, front and back and double-check that any children or pets are properly restrained for the drive. And then check again. You can’t be too careful when it comes to your precious cargo. Adult passengers, including yourself, should also be appropriately restrained via a seatbelt.
Select the safest route
A safe drive makes a good drive. So, before you hit the road, check for any road closures, and based on your findings, select the safest route. Most of the time, new highways and well-designed roads make the smoothest and safest drives.
The old road atlas and printed maps are things of the past, so instead, try and use your car’s GPS so that you aren’t reaching for your phone or wasting time getting lost.
If you need to use a navigational app or map on your phone, always make sure it’s plugged into your car’s hands free system or secure your mobile in a phone mount towards the centre of the windscreen to avoid obstructing your view of the road.
Chat to one of our local insurance specialists about motor vehicle insurance to help suit your needs today.
Car Insurance issued by Insurance Australia Limited ABN 11 000 016 722 AFSL 227681 trading as CGU Insurance. The advice on this page is general advice only and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs (“your personal circumstances”). Before using this advice to decide whether to purchase the insurance policy, you should consider your personal circumstances and the relevant Product Disclosure Statement available from cgu.com.au
The Capricornian Ltd | ABN 54 087 650 940 | AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 246780 acts under its own AFSL and under an agreement with the issuer Insurance Australia Limited trading as CGU Insurance ABN 11 000 016 722, AFSL 227681. Any advice provided is general advice only and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs (“your personal circumstances”). Before using this advice to decide whether to purchase a product, you should consider your personal circumstances, the relevant the Product Disclosure Statement and Target Market Determination.